"Around here, however, we don't look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things...and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths."
---Walter Elias Disney

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

73 Days: Off To Asheville

I had planned to make this another Wordless Wednesday using photos from today's trip out to Asheville. But we've only been here about 4 1/2 hours and I already gots words!

Today's trip was long, but with a couple stops it wasn't horrible. Our first stop was Guilford Community Technical College for a tour of the Entertainment Technology department. John is interested in pursuing a career as a sound engineer and this was recommended as one of the best programs for such in the nation, so Lisa scheduled a tour led by Tom Johnson, head of the department. The tour went great, and Mr. Johnson and the facility and program look to be all we could hope and more.

John was impressed with GCTT, here he is in front of their amphitheatre
We left High Point and I took a wrong turn somehow and headed east instead of west on I-40. After I figured that out and turned around and backtracked, we were off with plans to visit the quaint little mountain town of Hickory for lunch. We did get to Hickory for lunch, but as it is the least well-signed and most convoluted pile of street names (they are all numbers, going every way, with at least two Main Streets I saw neither of which leads to any sort of pleasant part of town) in the state, we ended up at Mellow Mushroom just off the ramp back onto I-40 WEST (heh heh), which was delicious, but not what we envisioned.

Leaving Hickory, we finally saw the mountains I was looking forward to seeing. They were covered with rather impressive clouds. Then those impressive clouds sprouted some spectacular (and a bit scary) lightning. Then rain. Lots of heavy rain. On mountain roads in a car prone to slip and slide under any sort of dampness. That wasn't fun. By the time we emerged from the storms were finally closing in on Asheville.
Safely through the storms :-)

We found the hotel lickety split and checked into a 7th floor room with a terrific mountain view. Then it was time to get out into a new city and have a look around.

Room with a view :-)
Charlton Heston got is start right here!
Turns out our hotel is directly next to Thomas Wolfe's boyhood home, now a museum, and the Asheville Community Theatre. We are right in the thick of Asheville's downtown, which is totally cool. So, off we went.

Asheville, if you aren't familiar, is North Carolina's Hippy City. John and I started counted Bernie bumper sticker as soon as we got here. It's that kind of town. We were looking forward to hippy watching and boy were we not disappointed!

We weren't out of the hotel 15 minutes before overhearing someone asking for "vegan nail polish remover." Oh, and it had to be animal cruelty-free, of course. Upon leaving that store we saw a guy sort of wandering in a circle banging on a tambourine. I don't think he was busking, I think he was just wandering in a circle banging on a tambourine. The real buskers were more professional, and quite good. We shopped Mast General Store, ate at a noodle house and had chocolate from a chocolate shop. All in all a great beginning.

Tomorrow, it's more exploring, hippy-watching and a trip to the Pinball Museum. Stay tuned....

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