May 1, 2009

Blue Ridge Memories, Part 1


My Sweet Baboo and I just returned from a week in the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina, spending our nights at two very different (and wonderful) bed & breakfasts, and our days exploring the Asheville area.

We've been to the ocean part of North Carolina - that was our first vacation, the 'test', if you will, where he and I spent the week with most of his family in a rented house on Sunset Beach. Figured if we could make it through that without committing murder or mayhem, we'd probably be OK.

This trip marked our ninth out of state vacation, and we love getting away from work and stress and exploring places we've not been to before, or at least places we've not been to together. For me, this was my first visit to the Blue Ridge Mountains; MSB had been in the general neighborhood before. We had a full visit, and between us we took about 30 rolls of film and too many digital pictures to count. I'll be putting out some of the digital shots over the next couple of days.

Here's the first collection, taken in the Lake Lure NC area. You may have heard of Lake Lure -- it's the home of the 2006 HGTV Dream House (currently empty, we were told) and the site where the beach shots in the movie Dirty Dancing were filmed. The lake is beautiful, with around 2000 mostly seasonal homes surrounding it, including one where the owners allegedly bring in white sand from Florida for the beach in front of their estate. Two of the original camps are still on the lake, each of which is something in the neighborhood of about 600 square feet. The largest house (so far) on the lake is 12,000 square feet. Clearly, the definition of 'camp' has changed over the years!

One of the best parts of the side trip to Lake Lure is how we got there -- on Alternate Route 74, which is like our local Thirteen Curves on steroids -- there aren't thirteen curves, there are about one hundred thirty curves on the way into town. Rocking, rolling, greater than 90 degree curves, with drop offs or mountains about an inch off the road, or so it seemed to me. For My Sweet Baboo, this was a good thing - he was having a blast trying to keep it under 60 MPH (kidding) with a marked speed of 15 MPH (not kidding). For me, less of a good thing, as I have developed a bit of vertigo since I had LASIK surgery a couple years back. I think it's the enhanced peripheral vision or something, but I don't enjoy that kind of drive quite as much as I used to. Fortunately, we stopped in town so I could catch my breath, and that's how we discovered the tour boat, which led to a great interlude and a wonderful start to the vacation.

Enjoy the pictures!

Sue