668 miles down…alot more to go. 41 hours logged in.
So far, things have gone according to plan, except of course the 4:00 departure. BLTN (Better Late Than Never) is a firmly held family tradition. In fact, we believe it appears prominantly on the Cawley/Lafferty Crest.
Besides that bit of expected deviation, it’s pretty much gone according to plan. There is the occassional threat of mutiny from the back seat, but mostly all are well-behaved and downright civil to each other so far. I’ve told them several times they are a pleasant group to travel with.
The in-flight movies have been good so far. Yesterday, we played Disney’s “Where the Red Fern Grows,” about a boy in Ozarks of Oklahoma and his hounds. The fact that the hounds die did not go over big, however.
“That’s nice, Mom, show us a movie with dying dogs on the day we leave Wednesday (our Dog) for a month,” Emmett said. (Wednesday is reportedly doing fine with Gina at home. Thanks, Gina and the Jo/Joe Crays.)
Today the in-flight movies was Forrest Gump. Always a tear-jerker…plus scenes of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
The kids say that the highlights so far have been our impromptu visit to Luray Caverns; music (and candy-purchasing) on the streets of Floyd; seeing Aunt Cheryl for the first time at our quaint cabin at the Pine Tavern Lodge and the waterfall hike we took today.
I found Luray particularly interesting since in my sleep-deprived state, I could not help making out the shapes of odd characters amid the stalactites and stalagmites. In addition to many trolls, witches and several forest animals, I detected the unmistakable likeness of a fat lady with her arm around a llama. Really, it was unmistakable. Look at the troll picture on Flickr to see what I mean.
A down-home and delicious dinner at Floyd Tavern was a great experience–all you could eat homemade specialties including fried chicken, mashed potatoes, dumplings, and a slew of other sides served family style. Plus homemade cobbler for $12 per adult and $7 per kid. My glass of wine was $4.
After that, it was off to downtown Floyd, for the Friday Night Jamboree, where literally dozens of fiddlers, and other musicians line the street, playing in mixed groups for free. We planned on checking out the three bands in the Floyd Country store for four bucks a person, but it was a lovely night and Aunt Cheryl, who joined us from Asheville had her dog, Sage, with her. (Troy and I did pop into a tasting room to try some local mead from the Blacksnake Meadery and other wines from local wineries…Next time, we might do a wine tour!)
Friday was a full day in the car, but today we took it easy. We slept in and drove just 4 hours, breaking up the drive with a nice two mile hike at Toms Creek Falls with magnificent views of the falls and and old mining shaft, as well as a dip in a swimming hole.
Aunt Cheryl outdid herself with a a great BBQ steak dinner for Emmett’s birthday.
Tomorrow is another long day. About 8 hours to Memphis with a lunch picnic with our friends, Derek and Hollie and family in Nashville.
Time to bunk down. Morning comes fast. More on Graceland later…