My Southern Relations


We are on our annual cross country trek to see family in the Carolinas.

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We didn’t make it out here last year because we went to a family wedding (and Maine, and Niagara Falls, and Michigan, and Cape Cod).

We left Blue at home with a house sitter because I suspect he doesn’t enjoy our trips.

I kept the entire back of the van clear for Blue's bed but he spent the entire time wedged between the boys' seats.

Sure, he hates to be apart from us but he doesn’t eat or drink or sleep the entire drive, spends it wedged between the boys’ seats in an uncomfortable way, and then doesn’t move at all once we arrive because Loony’s sister’s house isn’t carpeted and so Blue is loathe to move off his bed.

Not so comfortable for a 29 hour drive.

Not so comfortable for a 29 hour drive.

But I like traveling with dogs.

The morning we left I rang up Tabby and we decided that Chiquita should come with us.

So while Loony was taking a last minute poop before leaving, I hustled up to her house, grabbed the Chi and instructed Itchy to hide him under a blanket until we cleared Denver.

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By the time Loony found out it was too late for us to turn around. Heheh.

(Sarah, don’t get mad that I didn’t take Steph. Chicky is small enough for me to hide in my purse when we go to restaurants which is why he got to come.)

I’m pretty unplugged this trip – by choice and necessity – and it’s wonderful. Instead of toiling on the computer as Loony drove, I enjoyed the scenery and did that conversation thing.

The first day of the drive was great but by the second day I was ready to kill everyone.

Having Chicky to pet helped calm me down unless the boys were fighting over him.

We stopped in Smoky Mountain National Park and then pressed on to Asheville for a much needed night of sleep in a real bed. That night I dreamt I was driving a mattress up a steep and busy road. I could feel the battery wearing down and worried that I might have to get off and push.

Dreams are funny.

We had a lovely evening with Loony’s sister, brother-in-law, mother, and now grown nieces.

We took off for Blowing Rock the next day to visit my paternal grandmother’s family.

My Granny Annie (my grandmother’s sister) is 102 and still such a character. My grandmother passed away several years ago and Granny is a strong connection to her generation.

Annie likes to say that her age is like her phone number ... unlisted. But she's actually 102.

Annie likes to say that her age is like her phone number … unlisted. But she’s actually 102.

The boys delighted in running free in the gardens as I caught up with my father’s cousins Barbara, Anne and Jim.

My father's cousin Barbara

My father’s cousin Barbara

I have been coming to this area since I was a child and I am fortunate that Loony’s family is so close by that it allows us to keep up the relations.

I’m so glad this place is a part of my boys’ personal history.

After this we are pressing on to Loony’s sister’s lake house for the remainder of our trip. I’m not sure how much I’ll be blogging. I have the lofty ambition of reading three real books during the week. We’ll see if it happens.

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