Up High Again
This past weekend we packed our bags and headed up to Blowing Rock in the beautiful Blue Ridge mountains for an overnight trip. Normally being a day trip, it amazes me the intense coordination and planning it takes for us to ‘get away’ for just one night. The house sitter for our baby boy Mojo, food and drink shopping for said house sitter, coordinating the alarm system, etc. Of course, it does help knowing the house sitter is non other than my baby girl and her robust boyfriend. So at least there’s no huge guesswork on food choices there.
We stayed in this same place March of last year, a week after Keith proposed – so this return trip was very special to us. Originally built in 1874, the adorable hotel is called The Hemlock Inn. Today, the original inn has been completely refurbished with additional rooms having been added. Each of the beautifully decorated historic rooms offer individual rustic mountain settings complete with hardwood floors and antique decor. Each room having it’s own unique decor, we opt to stay in a different room each time. This was our room last weekend:
Here’s a couple shots from their website showing what’s in store once our beautiful warm summer weather decides to arrive (and stay).
Knowing the shops on Main Street so well, I was surprised we’d never been in the Six Pence Pub. Then I remembered neither of us are bar people, never have been! But since this place came highly recommended, we decided to pop in after we were checked and settled in our room. It did not disappoint. Though I didn’t get them in the picture, I’ll have to admit the fried pickles here are probably the best I’ve ever had.
Of course the trip would not have been complete without a leisurely drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway before we left on Sunday. It’s my dream to someday drive the entire Parkway from start to finish. We always gravitate to ‘our’ overlook… Big Bear overlook. This overlook has 360º scenic views and is very near Price Lake. It was disappointing to see that someone had stolen the rustic sign that’s resided there since we started coming – I guess this tells me it’s not just ‘our’ favorite overlook.
Here’s another panoram of the luxurious mountain laurel.
As usual, I found a t-shirt in a local store that I just couldn’t leave without. This shirt might as well have come preprinted with my name on it…
So I guess I’ll save my story of walking around naked in the dark with a gun for another time.
The Legend of the Blowing Rock
Last weekend we took a day-trip back up to the town of Blowing Rock, NC. With the majestic Blue Ridge Mountain scenic views, the town shops and our favorite barbecue restaurant, it tops our list of favorites. We had never actually been on the Blowing Rock, so we paid admission to see what it was all about.
I admired this little bird who chose to sit atop the Blowing Rock.
This little girl beside me looked lonely. 🙂
I’ve always loved a good legend. Something about them always connects me back to my childhood, where things could instantly turn magical and mystical. This, to me, is one of those tales that takes me back to that time.
It is said that a Chickasaw chieftan, fearful of a white man’s admiration for his lovely daughter, journeyed far from the plains to bring her to The Blowing Rock and the care of a squaw mother. One day the maiden, daydreaming on the craggy cliff, spied a Cherokee brave wandering in the wilderness far below and playfully shot an arrow in his direction. The flirtation worked because soon he appeared before her wigwam, courted her with songs of his land and they became lovers, wandering the pathless woodlands and along the crystal streams.
One day a strange reddening of the sky brought the brave and the maiden to The Blowing Rock. To him it was a sign of trouble commanding his return to his tribe in the plains. With the maiden’s entreaties not to leave her, the brave, torn by conflict of duty and heart, leaped from The Rock into the wilderness far below. The grief-stricken maiden prayed daily to the Great Spirit until one evening with a reddening sky, a gust of wind blew her lover back onto The Rock and into her arms. From that day a perpetual wind has blown up onto The Rock from the valley below. For people of other days, at least, this was explanation enough for The Blowing Rock’s mysterious winds causing even the snow to fall upside down.
I’ve got my own handsome Cherokee brave. 🙂
The Town of Blowing Rock
It’s one of my favorite places. Basically, I love everything associated with the majestic Blue Ridge mountains – the Parkway, the scenic overlooks, the endless trails to choose from, the attractions like Linville Falls and Taverns, Chimney and Blowing Rocks. And I adore all the little towns in between.
They apparently received some more of the white stuff up there on Saturday. We saw a few small piles of snow scattered on the sides of the road as well as leftover brime. It was a perfectly weathered day to walk the town of Blowing Rock, with the afternoon high reaching about 65º. We hit all our favorite shops like Poppy’s and The Last Straw, and even bought a couple of things. Keith bought a couple of the led wax candles, that actually have timers on them! I thought it was so neat that we’ll never have to touch them except to replace the batteries. I bought something I’ve had my eye on now for over a year… those little battery illuminated willow branches that compliment a large vase arrangement.
It’s nice to walk up and down the streets of a quaint little town while holding hands, never being in a hurry. I always find myself wishing we could stay longer. Of course, the trip wouldn’t have been complete without a trip to Kilwin’s for some homemade fudge. Like I really needed another couple pounds! Oh well, maybe I can spread it out a little so that it doesn’t accumulate all at once…