Although I appreciate most genres of music, I’ll admit I’ve grown into a country music kinda girl. My thanks to Keith who keeps me current with other stuff like hip-hop, pop and rock – if it weren’t for him, I’d be stuck on just country for sure.
I love this song. Listening to it puts me in a
car pickup on the way to the beach or mountains for a long four-day weekend. Sun’s high in the sky, and it’s mild enough out to have the windows down blowing my hair everywhere. Instead of a beer beside me, there’s an ice-cold diet Coke or diet Dr. Pepper – no DUI for me, thanks.
But when we arrive at the beach/mountains, I’m poppin’ that top. To whoever made this video, you deserve to be at a million hits by now. I tip my hat to you for a fantastic job…
Yeah, I’m chillin’ on a dirt road…
Laid back swervin’ like I’m George Jones.
I hope all the mothers out there had a fantastic Mother’s Day weekend! Saturday night we took both of our mothers out to eat (they finally got to meet each other, yay!). Sunday, my daughter took me out to lunch then drove me about an hour down the road to Old Stone Winery. There we enjoyed a wine tasting then some down time on the patio which overlooked the vineyards. I fell in love with the peach wine, of which she bought me a bottle to enjoy later. 🙂
Once back in town, Keith met me over at my place and we gave our best attempt at getting my bed to his house. My mattress is one of the heaviest ever made, I’m convinced of it. As far as help goes, unfortunately I was no good to him so we ended up enlisting help from a fellow apartment-dweller. Many thanks again to a good samaritan! Since my bed’s now a permanent resident of a spare room at Keith’s house, I am as well. There’s still much to do before the final move when I rent the truck, but since I pass right by there on the way ‘home’ at least it’s convenient to be there every day to pack.
It’s now nineteen miles one way to work. I realize some people drive much further than that, but it’s still a big difference from what I’m used to. From the angle I’m seeing it, it averages about two gallons of gas per day. Ugh. But, I knew this beforehand.
K’s new pool liner was installed yesterday! It’s gonna be a good summer…
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…
The new season of Survivor is premiering on CBS tonight – I can’t wait!! The show simply never gets old to me. This season is set in Nicaragua and promises to be the most grueling season of earth, wind and fire that we’ve ever had the pleasure of witnessing in any of the past eleven years.
Haters, be gone. Tonight I will have my undisturbed 60 minutes of unparalleled HD reality bliss… bring it!!
And that’s sure what it was. The icing came all during the day yesterday from late afternoon on into the night. When all was said and done, about three-eighths of an inch of bonified icing topped our lovely vanilla snow cake. I am eternally thankful we never lost power.
It’s going on mid-week now, and I have yet to go to work. I realized today that my car wasn’t going to de-ice itself, neither was the driveway going to shovel itself. So we dressed, went outside and made a big show of it, huffing and puffing and sliding/sweating our little buns off – to start and finish a job we didn’t really want to do. Seeing as how the temps aren’t supposed to rise above freezing until Friday-ish, I needed to get my tail in gear and do what I had to do to get home. You see, my little treehouse is situated privately in the very back of a complex that can be tricky at best in ice – but once I get out of there, I’m on a main thoroughfare. In going back to work, there was no way I was getting out of Keith’s neighborhood any time before noon. So, I had to get home.
I really don’t mean to drill this ‘Southern’ thing into the ground when it comes to us driving, but… okay just one more time. Have I told you we just can’t drive in the stuff? Snow is bad enough, but go and add over a quarter-inch of ice over it? Impossible. Through country back-roads that have no hope of ever being scraped/brimed? Inconceivable. But, guess who did it and made the ten-mile trip back home? (And, might I add, *cough-cough* you-tubed a portion of it?)
ME! (If anyone ever had doubt as to my southern-ness before, please refer to that accent – my gosh. I’ve obviously been here awhile now.)
Okay, enough with the bragging. For those who wonder, Keith was insistent on at least following me – I just saw no logic in it. After several failed attempts at convincing me, I finally convinced him that I had a cell phone and that signals had always been plentiful through the area, with the exception of a certain spot. But hey, I also had my new snow boots on! So, Da da da-DAH da-DAH!! It’ssss Super–Bonnnn!!
Well, I hadn’t been at home very long at all when a crave-wave winded it’s way into my head and wafted right down to where I could literally smell it.
Chinese… take-out… mmm, good good… come and get me…
I tried to ignore it, really I tried… to no avail. Moments later I was back on the road on a Chinese food quest. I found it so weird that there was no 5 o’clock rush-hour traffic. I mean NONE. I did mention, didn’t I, that the ice and snow brought this city to a screeching halt?
Guess this whole ‘I can drive now’ thing means one thing – I gotta go back to work tomorrow…
In reverse order.
The Christmas season has officially begun for most, but for some reason my mind seems to remain stuck on a warm, tropical setting. Instead of Christmas shopping this weekend, I’d rather be packing for a several-day stint at the beach for New Years. I can’t get it off my mind, and anxiously await the week before to at least see how the weather’s looking for the New Year.
I’m going to give my best attempt at finishing my Christmas shopping this weekend. I’m sure they’re will be a few extras to get next week, but even getting the majority done will be a huge relief. In the meantime, I’ll catch a few new oceanic documentaries that my love dvr’d recently for our viewing enjoyment. Uh-oh, here comes that tropical feeling creeping ’round again…
The weekend is over, and back to reality we go. I probably haven’t gotten this much rest over a weekend since, well – ever. I forecasted exactly this type of weekend for ole’ Bon, and it’s truly been appreciated.
Saturday night we braved the crowds at Christmastown, USA – aka McAdenville, North Carolina. People come from out of state to see the former little ‘mill-town’ that has been decorating for 55 years now. There’s a certain way visitors need to enter in order not to sit in 2-hour or more traffic – the likes of which our hearts literally broke looking at on the way out. Since so many people do come from abroad, the interstate (I-85) is jammed up way past the Lowell-McAdenville exit. The most efficient route is to turn left from (I-485) Wilkinson Blvd. exit, and enter the Christmas lights to the right.
Later that night, we made our New Year reservations at the beach again. I can only describe last year as magical, and I can’t imagine anything less this year. Fluorescent armbands/headbands and adult beverages shall adorn the balcony, errr beach, whichever mother nature chooses to allow. It’s an awesome hotel, the rates being SO affordable out of season – and only 2 blocks from a very cool pier. I have a genuine feeling that it’s gonna be awesome, no matter what the weather holds.
I decorated a couple of trees at work Friday. Yeah, they’re only about a foot tall each, but they serve the purpose. Gotta usher in the ole’ Christmas spirit to the office one way or the other!
Hope everyone has a happy, warm and blessed week. 🙂
Although my body might be back in the piedmont, my heart and soul is still at the beach.
Figured I’d share a few pictures of where most of me still resides…
of where a large piece of me will likely always reside.
Sunrise on our last day there. The ocean was so calm on this morning,
so different from all the strong waves and currents earlier in the weekend.
I love this picture. Before I slightly enhanced the lighting of it,
this could’ve been either the sun or the moon that lit up the ocean.
K and his newfound little buddies.
They seemed to adore him (almost) as much as I do.
Their colors were so rich and true… couldn’t quite capture it on camera.
The sunshine making water diamonds on the beautiful Atlantic.
Yes, my mindset is most definitely still here.
♥ My Heart. ♥
K helped me gather shells for this little work of art.
Out on Second Avenue Pier.
I could literally camp out at the end of a pier and sleep all night.
We’re taking the poles with us next time!!
Hope everyone has a wonderfully long and blessed weekend.
Sitting in front of the Atlantic ocean writing a blog has just now become one of my favorite things to do. My love is beside me, as well as a cooler full of cold beers… and waves are crashing so rhythmically that it’s a sound finer than that of any music I’ve ever heard.
I stole the idea from Perpetually Peeved to keep track of blog ideas via the ‘notes’ app on my iPhone. Works pretty well… although mine are far less interesting than hers. Here’s what I have so far, in raw form:
• People wading around in the cold ocean, and swimming in the unheated pool.
• Old couple walking the dog with the ball in his mouth the whole time.
• Beautiful bright spinning star that changes colors (Sirius).
• ‘Beetlejuice’ star that is constantly red, part of the constellation ‘Orion’ the Hunter.
• Waiting for a prettier shell to come along.
There’s more that packed this already jumbled head but I’m still trying to get the hang of jotting things down before I forget! It’s not fun maneuvering a blog around via a phone, so I’ll end this with an attempt to load a picture.
Blessings to all for a wonderful weekend!!
I’ve been slammed at work the past couple of days which I know is a good thing – although it’s not so much my normal production work, it’s those challenges that come around every so often that make my head hurt. I know, all the better to keep the old brain sharpened. The icing on the cake just came when our payables person just told us our pay will be deposited a day late, for reason of the Veteran’s Day holiday. Amazing. Some people do actually still live paycheck to paycheck, and what a difference one damn day can make in such a case.
We’re going to try to get to the coast this weekend. It’s still in the dream stages right now as no lodging has been reserved, but a big dream nonetheless. To feel the ocean breeze in my face… well it just sounds heavenly.
Here’s to Wednesdays, and the fact that it’s 5 o’clock somewhere.
Everyone probably knows by now about my acrophobia (fear of heights) as well as my contradictory fascination with extreme-height architectural feats. I’ve written of the Grand Canyon Skywalk, the Alpspix and the Burj Dubai. I’ve heard of viaducts in my life, but I wasn’t aware that’s what the one along the Blue Ridge Parkway on Grandfather Mountain was called. Appropriately named, I think. So what’s a viaduct? Here’s the official info from the visitor’s center:
“A viaduct is a long bridge with a series of spans supported on piers. The Linn Cove Viaduct is 1243 feet long and 35 feet wide. The “S” curve roadbed rests upon seven vertical piers that are spaced about 180 feet apart. The roadbed is made up of 153 precast concrete sections held in place with wire cables and epoxy glue. No two sections are exactly the same and only one section (#93) is straight and square. Each section weighs nearly 100,000 pounds. Linn Cove Viaduct is the first in this country to incorporate progressive placement of sections. What this means is that the bridge is built upon itself. Workmen, materials and machines move back and forth on the completed bridge to place each successive section. Little or no damage is caused to the landscape over which the viaduct is being constructed.”
Ground was broken on the Blue Ridge Parkway on September 11, 1935, and all but 7.5 miles of it’s 469 were constructed by 1967. The parkway was completed in September of 1987. This final section below, around a rugged and rocky perimeter side of Grandfather Mountain, accounted for the twenty-year gap.
There was much controversy and debate over this ‘missing link’ as state and private officials argued over the environmental impact. How would they build a road at an elevation of 4,100 feet without damaging one of the world’s oldest mountains? Finally, NPS landscape architects and FHA engineers agreed the road should be elevated and/or bridged to eliminate the need for massive excavation. The result? The most complicated concrete bridge ever built – the Linn Cove Viaduct. The only trees that were even cut for the construction of this section were those directly beneath the roadway.
The Linn Cove Viaduct Visitor Centre is located at Milepost 304.4, right after you cross the viaduct itself. You really have to look for it because it’s not clearly marked.The area has restrooms and a trail to Linn Cove Viaduct, of which we partook. The trail is less than a mile round trip and is moderate, starting out as an accessible paved trail at the visitor center and leading to a beautiful view of the viaduct from underneath – then finally giving hikers access to the Tanawha Trail. You can continue up the remaining dirt trail and climb by huge boulders for another 1/3 mile to get some views of the surrounding areas – but this personally scares the heck out of me and you won’t catch me doing it. As I watched Keith climb onto a huge boulder, I admit I had to turn my head and got more than a bit upset. The dropoffs are straight down and at that height, well – I shudder to think of the accidents that may have occurred there by persons striving to get a ‘better view’.
I have to say though, the views from this viaduct are the best I’ve ever seen from any of the North Carolina mountains.
Been a beautiful weekend so far. My brother was in town, so yesterday we went over to my Dad’s house to see him. Dad threw some steaks on the grill and we had an awesome dinner… I’d forgotten how good charcoal makes a steak taste. Huge difference.
Along the lines of food, we’re currently driving 100 miles for a BBQ dinner. Not just any BBQ dinner though, this is the place I was talking about the other day (Woodlands) that absolutely rocks. My antibiotic finally kicked in on the offending tooth, and for the first time in over a week, I’m not in any pain.
I have a great deal to be thankful for. Heck just to have the freedom, ability and resources to jump in the car and go somewhere when you want to, well that’s a huge blessing.
Goodbye to the three-day weekend – but oh, how I enjoyed it’s stay! It brought much cooler temps and beautiful skies – a chance to rest as well as the opportunity to get some things done.
A day-trip to the mountains was just what the doctor ordered. The weather couldn’t have been more perfect, and the crowds were even manageable. After miles of hiking on some not-so-desirable terrain, we could both probably use the care of a doctor. The statement “we’re sore” doesn’t quite describe the magnitude of the pain. Until today, I’ve never had trouble at all getting down my stairs. I had to laugh at myself this morning and hope no one was looking as I stepped sideways down the steps in an attempt to minimize the strain.
What amazed me about Sunday was the visibility factor. One worker pointed out two mountains in the distance that are ‘local’ to us – Kings Mountain and Crowders Mountain. Those mountains were now approximately 75 miles away, and we could still make out their silhouettes perfectly. Amazing!
Now if you’ll excuse me… I’m off to see how long I’m able to break the rules by donning my white threads after Labor Day.
On the road early this morning as we decided to take a day-trip to the mountains. It’s cool out, even at 9:30am I can barely have my window cracked while going down the road. I’m loving that!! On the other hand, it’s a stark reminder that I’m in serious need of a new winter jacket.
There’s nothing like the feel of the open road ahead of you and knowing you’re getting out of town, even for a day – makes it even more special when you’re with someone you love. This morning the Carolina Blue sky is enhanced with wispy muted white ‘streaks’, almost as though an artist placed them there with a paintbrush. I see the mountains gaining clarity in the distance, and I continue to be ever-thankful for the ability to get out and move about… freely.
What is it about the mountains? Hmmm…
Ever since K and I started dating, it’s kind of been our forte. For some reason we’ve just always gravitated here. I never was much of a mountain person previously – I mean, I tolerated the area, I just didn’t yearn for it. I guess I didn’t appreciate it. But now… well now, it’s different somehow…
Is it the cleaner air… the clearer views that stretch so very far… the endless abundance of trees, the greenery… the feeling that I’m on ‘top of the world’… or possibly the fact that I don’t have cellphone service…
Whatever the case, once again I yearn for it. The cooler air shall usher in endless possibilities for the area, and my mind is scrambling…
Oh how I’ve missed my little blog! I feel the weight of a thousand plus words just waiting to be written, though I’ll spare you that one today. It really is amazing how dependent I’ve gotten on this ‘release valve’ of mine (I love calling it that) and when I can’t write, or vent, well – it’s like a part of me is missing.
Late last week I graciously acquired a case of the intestinal flu. I have not been this sick in at least twenty years – it literally landed me on my ass. This is something that I would not wish on my very worst enemy. I was more than a little concerned over our beach trip and the fact that my boyfriend would also contract this highly contagious virus, since we’d been together for dinner just the night prior. Amazingly enough, as of right now post-weekend – he’s still virus-free. I thank the Lord for this.
So we had our little beach trip. 🙂 K called it ‘one of the most amazing times he’s ever had’ to which I have to agree. Ironically enough, his sister and her husband were also taking a trip down there, staying 2 blocks up from us! It made for double fun, we got together for a bikini lunch on the beach then had dinner later at Murrell’s Inlet, and barhopped a couple of venues there on the tiki strip.
Saturday night, we went out to the infamous Garden City Pier (I heart this place) where in peak season, a band plays at both ends of the pier. We actually found a table at the end of the pier where the band Coldshot was playing. Keith made a dream of mine come true when he stood and held his hand out to me for our first slow-dance ever on the pier. I can honestly say I have never been more in love with him than at that very moment – and it’s that moment in time I know I’ll remember for the rest of my life.
Another first happened when we were in the ocean – we were about waist-deep (chest-deep with the waves) when he noticed about 100 or so feet out a pack of dolphins gracing us with their presence. As the waves allowed, we watched them move rhythmically in and out for about 8 minutes from one side of the ocean to the other, until they finally faded from our sight. I’ve never physically been in the ocean and privy to dolphin sitings all at once, and we both felt very privileged.
I’ll even go so far as to say it was magical. But then again… so was the dance.
K and I went out for Mexican last night to a fave little hangout, then touched on a few stores looking for a very particular type of lounge-chair. The chairs look something like this…
These chairs just look like us. And yes, there’s a particular reason we need want them. There will be an upcoming beach trip in our future. Not a long one, but one nonetheless. A high-rise oceanfront trip to the beach is very much mandated at this time… as well as a few slow dances on the end of a very long pier, Nights in Rodanthe style.
Our last beach trip was during New Year’s Eve 2010, which was absolutely the coolest New Year’s I’ve ever had – not to mention the most meaningful. I don’t even have words to describe the deep respect he and I have for one another – the things we’ve been through together and how we’ve chosen to deal with them have only served to make each of us a stronger and hopefully wiser individual.
The philosophical tangent is done. Suffice it to say I need a vacation. As for K? Well, put a man on a decade-plus long stretch of no vacations, and believe me when I say he’s ready too.
And I’m more than willing to help entertain. 🙂
There was another shark attack on the SC coastline this past weekend involving a 13-yr old girl, and I just read of another incident yesterday with a 10-year old boy. Though both were injured, they’ll be okay. Are the attacks increasing, or is it just me?
I probably watched a total of several hours combined this weekend of Expedition Great White on Nat Geo channel. These presentations are obviously a very favorite of mine, and anytime one is on (any shark show, for that matter) it never ceases to capture my full attention. Aside from pursuing writing, it would’ve been a lifetime dream to have a career in marine biology. I simply cannot imagine the ability to do that for a living. I’d literally scrub the decks of the vessel just to be there for a couple weeks time, to have that experience. I hope to be able to go down in a cage someday… I know it’s gotta be expensive, but it’s on my bucket-list anyway.
This shark was successfully tagged and released on an episode of Expedition Great White. The scientists, doctors and crew are all super-intricately careful as to how this is accomplished – and the safety of the shark is of utmost importance. I felt the need to explain the purpose of this photo because it almost appears as a hunt-and-capture shot… but it’s not.
We are learning so much more about these magnificent creatures. The research being done on them now has intensified times ten. It amazes me every time I witness a twenty-foot great white be caught, exhausted, and captured temporarily on a custom platform designed specifically for it. This has enabled so many different procedures to be performed that were never before possible. The sharks are successfully released well within 20 minutes. These shows have really raised awareness of our marine life, for which I’m grateful.
My mother and I used to go way out into the ocean, floating sometimes for long periods. We never pondered the the thought of a shark, much less ever ‘worried’ about it. Now? Well, I still love and respect the ocean more than ever. But you would literally have to dope me up (very well) in order to get me to go out over my head and remain there for any length of time NOW. So what’s changed? I mean, we knew enough then – we’d even seen the movie Jaws. But we didn’t have that certain ‘fear factor’ then. I’m still not quite getting that.
There are several things you can do to help prevent a shark attack, most of which are common sense. Even with that said, sometimes common sense factors aren’t exercised. For one, don’t go out swimming around a pier. Swimming in water where all that bait is never smart, besides, you don’t want to be hooked yourself, right? Also, stay in groups whenever possible as sharks are more likely to attack a solitary individual. Avoid being in the water around daybreak or twilight, because this is when sharks are most active. Never wade deep when you are bleeding. Avoid wearing shiny jewelry, since the reflected light resembles the sheen of fish scales. Lastly, avoid areas where you see diving seabirds – this generally signals a sign of bait fishes or other feeding activity.
If you are in the ocean and spot a shark, the international hand signal for ‘shark’ is a flat hand with thumb against forehead, as in a fin. Be sure to use it if you need to – your voice alone is not much help when you’re in the ocean.
For the latest information on shark attacks, this one’s a great tool. http://www.sharkattackinfo.com/
I finally got out on the water again. After three long years, to the very day… ole’ Bon was able to partake in a day at the lake.
I never will possess the ability to fully explain the depth of my love for boating. When that boat pulls away from the dock, any and all troubles are left on land – it’s the most freeing feeling ever imaginable to me. I can only assume that bikers get this same euphoric feeling while on the road, as I’ve heard it explained to me, anyway. But as for my love, my haven, it will always be the water – and this will remain so forever.
There’s something additional about the fourth of July on the lake. I’ve only had the opportunity to experience it once, that was back in 2007 in my ‘old life’. We drove a little further down to a different sandbar, one that wasn’t so centrally located in the ‘mainstream’ of things, and hung out there for a couple of hours. We had a good 40-minute drive back to the River Hills area where the fireworks were being launched, and being the lucky souls we are, actually found a empty dockside spot at the local TBones. Dinner was great, and the fireworks were amazing afterwards.
Upon leaving, thank God for all safety equipment being in check (well, almost) because before we even reached the main channel we were pulled over. Anchors and line, check… personal floatation devices, check… first aid kit, check… licenses, check… navigational lights, NOT ON. Shit. We got off with a warning though, yes sir and thank you officer.
Back to the basics today, hope everyone had a happy and safe holiday!!
I gazed down at myself as I sat down in my car seat this morning and discovered a spider had hitched a ride down the stairs with me. Lovely. I should be used to it by now I so hate spiders.
On a brighter note, here comes our holiday finally and with it the three-day weekend. Longer for some, I know, but I’ll take the extra day and not complain a bit. I recently made a friend who frequents the lake (via boat) and she invited us out this weekend. I’m SO STOKED I couldn’t be more excited if I were going to the beach. Wellll, I might be a bit more excited about that – but this is still major to me. I haven’t had a good day out on a boat in well, I don’t count last year because the boat never even moved from it’s stationery spot. So, three years now. That’s far too long for ole’ water-Bon to be a land-lubber. Craving the ocean too, but that’s a whole other story. The lake will most definitely temporarily suffice.
So, Eclipse has come out. All of my New Moon buddies have seen it so far and are telling me it’s mega-awesome, so I can’t wait to see it. My guy said something about Monday and it probably will be less crowded that day. One friend of mine was going to see it for the second time last night. The last movie I went to see more than once was Nights in Rodanthe, which I saw 3 times at the theatre. I didn’t know it at the time, but that movie was to become a staple in my newfound single life.
I have a friend who is taking his girlfriend to the beach this weekend – and planning to ‘pop the question’ to her. From what he said, she’s wanted this for a long time, and what better time than July 4th holiday? I’m such a romantic, so I bask in stories like these. I got all sappy yesterday when I heard what he was planning, and the girls at work were laughing at me. I can only explain it by saying that I’ve never in my life had anyone who actually wanted to marry me, so I guess that’ll make a person a romantic if nothing else will. I can’t wait to hear how he did it when he gets back in town… will he propose on the pier? On the beach? Or maybe at Broadway, standing underneath the fireworks after they start… my goodness, I love that idea….
Stay tuned. 🙂