I recently traveled to Blairsville, Georgia to participate in the Sorghum festival. I have been wanting to do some shows outside and thought I would combine my longing to see my daughter Friedel, who lives in Seattle, with a love of the autumn leaves...it seemed like a win-win situation.
Friedel flew into Tampa, Florida and I picked her up in the Queen Victoria, my mini van, nicknamed Vicki.
If this all seems a bit flat, hang in there I am trying to get to the good part...
We did a bit of Cracker Barrel Pub Crawl, stopping for lunch and again for dinner on the way there. It was nice but kinda predictable, hovering around the gift shop looking at sweaters I wanted but wished were 50% off.
I didn't buy any and I didn't let Friedel buy any either.
We got to Atlanta, and decided since we were having a grand adventure to take the Bypass around it. I usually go straight through, and just grit my teeth. Then I take 575 up to 515 and head to Blue Ridge. By the time we get to the cabin we have rented it is usually late and I am tired.
this time was a little different.
Friedel has an I-phone and I have a smart phone as well, so I wasn't too concerned when we got off on I-85 somehow. Went right to Gainesville, Georgia. I am so glad that I didn't have a map because looking at it now kinda freaks me out...because we were far from where we needed to be...I think at some point we took 11 and traveled its dark and lonely country path into the night to Turners Corner...where we couldn't get reception any more on our smart ass phones. It was about 9 o'clock...I got gas although I didn't need it...just comforted me to have a bulging tank of gasoline as a defense against this endless road I guess. I went into the Valero store and asked for directions and some hope that we weren't hopelessly lost. A word I don't use too much.
The lovely woman at the counter said I was about an hour from Blairsville. She smiled when I said "THAT LONG?"
She was sweet when she said that the trip would be shorter if we didn't have to cross Blood Mountain and that there were a lot of switch backs that slowed you down.
So, Off we went.
I grew up in the country and I know that the nights are dark.
We traveled 129 I think, going north and slightly east.
We crossed Blood Mountain.
It was about 10 o'clock at night. Friedel said I had lost my neck because my shoulders had risen in tension up to my earlobes.
I began a singular dialogue with my car Vicki, and Friedel seemed to punctuate the road and my dialogue with a variety of appropriate songs on the radio.
Or those songs were sent to her from a guardian angel with a fabulous sense of humor. At one point we were climbing a very steep grade with switch backs on Blood Mountain with Highway to the danger Zone from Top Gun blaring. I haven't laughed so hysterically in long time. Not predictable. This was not the Cracker Barrel Pub Crawl.
We rounded a corner and passed a vehicle facing us on the opposite side of the shoulder with a smashed windscreen.
Decided to go back and see if there was someone who needed help.
middle of the mountain, difficult to turn around. managed it.
relieved to see a pink ticket on the car, marking it as illegally parked instead of severed heads and limbs hanging zombie style from the rear view mirror.
Turned around again.
Crested the top and shot over the top after reading the run away truck sign.
Down we went. Hysterical laughter.
More crazy song narration.
Our cabin was in Owl town. It was on the south east side of Blairsville and Thank you God on the path we wee traveling.
Followed the directions to Wilson Mountain...narrow leafy mountain tracks...