Sunday, October 30, 2011

Nonnie Travels, Part 3

Nonnie Travels, Part 3

I never woulda done it on purpose, of course. My plan was to amble south and west from Black Mountain, North Carolina to some point in central Georgia for a night, and then, the next day, on to the Florida panhandle, where I live. I would drive along what I think of as "soft highways." I avoid Interstates to the best of my ability. As soon as I get on one I want off it-so there's little point in trying them. This has taken me many years to learn. I'm a good driver, I think, but I have issues-see Nonnie Travels, Part 2, if you're curious about those-it's right under this post. I did avoid the four-to-six lane, beat up, loud, unforgiving zoomers for the most part. I followed through on that part of my plan, anyway.

Self-navigating with my follow-roads-that-point-south-or-west-or-both rule, I ended up in the southern Appalachians, on two way roads with a hair-pin turn every two seconds. Nobody else around for long chunks of time. The roads had signs with numbers and "south" or "west" posted every now and then, but since I couldn't look at my maps,(I love maps and had lots of them with me) they weren't very helpful. I'd flash by the infrequent shoulders and pull-overs and think, "oh, there was one." Once on this path, I had to go on until I came out somewhere, turning around just didn't seem doable. Hell, I couldn't even think about changing the CD. My hands were too busy. Really, I felt like I was driving with my arms. My entire body. Still, early Tom Waits was rather good company for this drive. He and I had a blast.

Driving up and down and around mountains, in October, on the kind of day that deserves all the best weather words thrilled me and gave my six-year old Buick a happy shock, too. Okay, maybe I wouldn't recommend the sort of morning I had to fellow heart patients, but man, it was fun. I had red, yellow, gold and green trees, dappled sunlight, miles of dense forest and then panoramic views of somewhere (didn't much matter where at that point, did it?) and I was counting only on myself and my trusty car, with Tom for additional spirit. I never woulda done it on purpose, what with my issues, and my promises to be careful, but fate gave me a gift…and a boost. I'd even gone south and west after-all, albeit not very far south or west, mostly up and down. Sort of like swinging. Huh.

This is the Windsor Hotel, dressed up for Christmas, in Americus, Georgia.
I stayed here on my way up to Black Mountain, and again on my way home. Great place. No fooling.


david coyote said...

Hi Cuz -

For reasons I do not understand, I'm having trouble posting comments at your blog.

Love your writing - better than them airport novelists! Neven been to where you were, but have driven similar roads. Thanks for taking me with you.


Anonymous said...

Lovely work, great trip, I'm there in spirit. Marie