Patti Edmon Altered Attic: North Carolina is the place to be...

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

North Carolina is the place to be...

The necessities for a fabulous cabin vacation include a scenic view, privacy in a wooded setting, ambiance, and of course, amenities A bit of research in the Asheville area uncovered Carolina Mornings, an agency with properties that offered just the right blend of comfort, quality and value.

We'd gotten a very late start - but that's another story (think Chevy Chase Vacation movies) - and the detour on east I40 meant a shorter albeit far more scenic route. So an hour past Knoxville the sun slid behind the Blue Ridge mountains like butta; we'd driven over the French Broad River, code name for my bladder; all of a sudden there was a tiny blink of a town, the only evidence of life was a noisy saloon that lit up the dark rural night. It was packed to the brim with rafters, kayakers, climbers and cheerful waitresses, one of whom pointed the way to the restroom. I must have looked like a mole, blinking and car-weary and the kids were getting antsy but I had to resist the urge to grab a chair and a frosted mug and slide up to a table of buff young adventurers. We vowed to stop in again on the way back but in daylight we never could find it.
An hour later, thanks to Garman, we finally reached Weaverville, another dark little town save one quick mart... milk, bread, water, eggs, cereal and a few other necessities. In walks the poet, the only reason why the station was still open. It was the night before his wedding and his bride-to-be had called ahead to see if 'George' would wait for the bachelor party, the solo guy, his dog, a cozy fire and the six pack of beer he'd come to pick up. We chatted, relayed the trials of our journey and he told a poem he'd written in the sixth grade about poop. We would end up crossing paths twice more during our week there.
So Garman told ups up the hill, up and up, and no sign of life but finally...

Hmmmm, is this our destination??

Nope, not like the photos on the internet.

Well, I'll be, could this be the one??

No, couldn't be... the cabin we rented had four bedrooms, not fourteen.

And then, just like Goldilocks in the Three Bears, we found just the right one.

This one is the perfect fit!

Sure enough, and was it ever perfect. The owners were ever so gracious and we extended our stay an extra night. North Carolina reminds me a lot of Kentucky, only more progressive in ways that are good for arts and tourism. Culture and class in charmingly quaint settings and every time I visit I never want to leave.

Dylan and Alice found the brand new hot tub in minutes and I instantly fell in love with the kitchen, i.e., hey, is this nicer than mine? No wonder I don't like to cook! The laundry room was so conveniently located off the kitchen I didn't mind throwing in a load or three.

And being up at such a high altitude must have played a role in my feeling better, almost normal, not stuck in the nasty flare that taunted my joints and drained energy and clarity of mind.
Nice dining room for a cabin...

Living room with a vaulted ceiling and one of the many decks, one right off the master suite, secluded with a lovely view and comfy chairs.

Every day we found a new adventure... the area is so blessed with vibrant downtown galleries, arts and restaurants, street musicians and fabulous food. We saw three families from home there and all agreed that a week wasn't enough.

And oh my, the shopping!

Our first trip was to Saluda Jane's, aka proprietress of Random Arts, where my blogging has its roots. Afraid she'd leave town before I had a chance to see her, we drove down the first day and revisited our favorites - the Saluda Grade Cafe, an antique shop, a few galleries and shops...

Then off to find Jane. She had a workshop in progress and when I peeked in the door I saw her on the other side of the building. I casually wandered through the across the sea of tables crammed with busy artists, who all looked up, of course.
But I just had to give her a quick hug and stock up a few favorites. One can never have enough wholey paper... in sheets, an assortment of cutouts and a great price.

She was showing a workshop attendee this gorgeous, sumptuous ribbon... click this link to see what Jane is up to and get some of your own - the price is right and opportunities are endless!

A couple of days later we stopped by a junk shop in Hendersonville and the owner remembered us from last time... maybe because, like then, Dylan wound up in the dungeon playing the drums while I found all kinds of goodies - from cigar boxes, porcelain dolls, frames, lace and books. I also stumbled upon a bundle of letters between a local woman and her husband who was a soldier in WW2... one of the letters begins, "My Dearest, I can't believe the war is finally over..." I can't wait to put them in order to I can enjoy their journey.

This time there was bongo drum in the window, along with tons of other 'stuff' and the owner heartily encouraged Dylan to get up there an play - he sounded great an attracted a lot of attention.

If you look behind them, you'll see what I mean when I say this is one authentic junk shop - Seldom Scene has nothing categorized and everything at a great price!

After we got back home I finally got my act together and shot some of the treasures I am anxious to start doing something with - even if it's trading. I'll do some high res scans of the photos and some documents and share as soon as I get to it!

I have SO much more to post - thanks for stopping by and sticking with me... this past few weeks has been very difficult with my arthritis, illness in the family and all the other stuff of life. Hope to see you again soon!!


Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Sorry to hear you have been hit hard by arthritis, but it looks like you have had an awesome trip, filled with fun memories, lots of photos, laughs, and great shopping.

Welcome back.

cheryl said...

I sorry to hear about you not feeling well I am glad you enjoyed your trip

Sharmon Davidson said...

Hi Patti! It looks like you had an amazing trip; I'm enjoying your story so far, and want to hear more. For instance, who is the poet, and what happened when you met again? This post is so well written, it's like starting to read a really good novel, and just as you get into it, there's no more! All the stuff you got looks fantastic- what fun! I love the pics of your kids in their various hats; how cute and funny! Next time, can I go with?

Kelly Jeanette said...

Glad you enjoyed the trip. It's lovely up there isn't it. I go to Asheville alot and try to make it out that way when I can.

I hope the arthritis doesn't plague you too badly.

random notes said...

Nice blog girlfriend, and very complete to say the least? is there more? so many good pictures too. That cabin looks great! Now that i-40 is open again( for a while) you can come back.

Karin Bartimole said...

So much fun to see the pics that go along with your vacation stories! Alice is adorable - modeling all those hats!! She actually looks pretty fantastic in each and every one - I see the performer within her shining through : )
You sure did make some good finds - can't wait to see what you do with everything. Those letters are priceless.
Wishing you healing and a surge of creative energy!

Ragamuffin Gal said...

I am in awe of your wonderful post Patti ~ the adventures, the photos, the words all come together to paint a beautiful portrait. Thanks for sharing the journey with us! I loved every minute of it!!! Blessings ~ k

Debrina said...

Hello Patti!! I was just thinking about you and then hopped onto my blog to link thru to you and lo you had already left a comment on my blog!
Well, isn't this just a treat - you, your husband and your kids look and sound like you had a blast! Wow. What a gorgeous place to have a holiday!! And yay, you managed to get art supply shopping in too. I'm so glad the pain ebbed away for that short period of time and you really enjoyed your time. I'm doubly sorry, tho, that you have the pain back again.


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