Days 60, 61, 62 , Oct. 28 – 30. Memphis to Fayetteville, AR

DAY 60: Monday, October 28: Memphis to Oxford to Belzoni, MS.

Easy day: Left Memphis around 10 a.m., went by Ms. Neely’s BBQ of the Interstate BBQ Restaurant,to take some of their delicious ribs and shoulder chopped pork to our friends in Belzoni. Next on the agenda was Oxford, MS – home of the illustrious OLE MISS – UNIVERSITY – where Lois received her BA degree. It’s still a gorgeous campus, even though it’s grown from (when I went) from 2000 students to 11,000 . The only thing clearly remembered was the small, but lovely, town square in Oxford. After touring the campus, we had lunch at the Grocery Store in Oxford and walked around the square. We arrived at our beloved friend’s home – the Winkie Hotel +++, in which we were honored by being met by my ole cradle buddie, Kate, for Winkie’s fantastic caramel cake and chocolate cake, and joined later for dinner by Bill, Winkie’s son, and his beautiful wife, Kathy. Lovey evening.

Day 61: Tuesday, October 29: Belzoni, MS

Lovely day. Kate and her husband Jerry picked us up around 12:45 and off we went to Greenwood, MS for a luncheon to the famous Crystal Grill, which had been arranged by Kate and my other cradle buddies, Louanne, and Lelia. You can not believe the wonderful luncheon of shrimp and crab newburg, salad, chocolate pie and peach cobbler we most certainly enjoyed. Thanks to Lelia and Louanne, who picked up the tab. There is no question that I will have to shop for a larger size in clothes before we return. Between Winkie and the Crystal Grill, I don’t have a prayer.

On the way, we passed what would have been a most ordinary sight, of cotton fields – when I grew up, that was all you saw – but in the past few dozen years, very little cotton was grown, the delta went into rice, catfish farms, soybeens, etc. Not now, It was quite lovely to see, and the new machinery makes cotton again a very profitable crop. See the pictures: the new methods , using the new machines, which pick and then pack the cotton in massive rolls, wrap the rolls for transporting the cotton to the gins in less than a quarter of the time when cotton was just picked by hand.

Day 62, Wednesday, October 30: Belzoni – Fayetteville, Arkansas

Drove pretty much all day, started seeing the pretty colors after Little Rock (at higher elevations, the colors are more pronounced), ran into a lot of road construction and were very relieved to finally arrive at at the home of my ole Vanderbilt grad school roomate, Gen Broyle, in Fayetteville. Terrific dinner of gumbo, quiche, black-eyed peas, salad , etc. I’ve lost the battle. Peter’s in for a shock.

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Day 59, Sunday October 27 Dickson, TN to Memphis, T

A very easy drive. Decided to start our Memphis experience with a tour of GRACELAND! We had talked to our old friend, Ludie Henley, who said that it would be a crime to go to Memphis and not go to Graceland. She’s been there twice!. Keith had called while we were on route, and suggested that we get in the mood by listening to the satellite Elvis station to get warmed up. Glad we did. Learned a lot about Elvis that we didn’t know – such as his charities, his inner anxieties, his military service. His car exhibit was the best for me. Why in the world don’t the car manufactures take a clue and make car exteriors fun
again. Peter had researched BBQ places and so we went to the INTERSTATE BBQ restaurant for some extremely good BBQ – so good, in fact, that we arranged to pick up some on the way to Belzoni the next day. After lunch, we drove on to the PEABODY Hotel. What a lovely ole style delightful place! Arrived in time to watch the Bronco’s astoundingly successful football game on TV as well as witness the historical moment of the ducks’ march out of the fountain in the middle of the Peabody’s lobby. After the game, we gussied up and went to BEALE STREET, to sample their current versions of the Blues. Was fun.

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DAY 58; Sat., Oct. 26. Lake Lure to Dickson, TN

A big driving day, lengthened by 1.5 hours because the Blue Ridge Parkway, leading to the Smokies, outside of Maggie Valley is closed. We then drive on west to Cherokee and the road over the Great Smoky Mountains has, literally, bumper to bumper traffic. So we turn around, go back east to Maggie Valley and go over the Smokies on I-40. The leaves are turning and pretty, but not the same thing seen from an interstate. However, the I-40 drive from Knoxville to Nashville is quite colorful and attractive. The only real highlight of the day was a tasty Italian lunch at Frankie’s, in Maggie Valley. One big disappointment of the trip is the book, “Roadfood”. They miss many towns and many good restaurants. We think we could do better! One huge bonus of being in TN is the gas price of $3.20/gal. Quite a contrast to Canada, where the price often converted to about $5/gal. Wonder why. Taxes? We finally get to Dickson, west of Nashville, around 8 PM, tired, but glad that the drive tomorrow to Memphis is just 2.5 hours.

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DAY 55; Wed., Oct. 23: Asheville

Today we drove into Asheville, to see ole Colorado friends, Priscilla and Mike Herzoff, who now live here. They have a lovely home in a beautiful area just south of Asheville. We embarked on a tour of Asheville. A river walk area is full of artisans shops. Lois purchased a kilim purse and two pillow covers, Peter a souvenir coffee mug. We strolled around downtown and had lunch at the Tupelo Honey restaurant. Shades of Elvis! Lois had their grits and shrimp, Peter the fresh trout and grits. Terrific authentic tastes of southern cooking. Asheville is a small (80,000+), old city which has 5 colleges, and a flourishing downtown area.

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DAYS 53 -54 – Mon., Oct. 21 – Tues., Oct. 22Lake Lure, NC

Mon.: We’ve had a needed, lazy, restful time at the Rumbling Bald Resort at Lake Lure, NC. This is a huge time share resort. It’s a challenge to remember how to get to our unit each time. Another name of the resort was Fox Run, and most of the streets have “fox” as part of their name. We keep passing “Red Fox Lane” and want to turn on it, for old times sake! On Mon., we rode around the beautiful lake on unbelievably curvy roads, went and got some jam and salt and pepper at the local store, Lois did stocks, we both read and just hung out. We went to the Apple Valley Golf Course Restaurant for their special roast beef buffet for dinner. Delicious.

Tues.: We played 18 holes of golf at the adjacent Apple Valley Golf Course, a relatively new, long, difficult course. We vote it as one of the most beautiful courses we’ve ever played.

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Day 56: Thursday, October 24th and Friday, October 25th

Golf day on the lovely Apple Golf course. We’ll miss it. Dinner at the Lakeside Restaurant, with a highlight of a great sunset over the lake.

Day 57: Friday, October 25th

Another relaxed, hang out day. Lois spent much of the the day stocks. I must say here how very much Motif Investing staff has come to my rescue – in particular Stephan and then today, Carrie. There is no way I could figure out how to do things on this little ipad. So, to Motif, I certainly say THANK YOU.
Peter went swimming, did email and wrote and edited the rest of our pictures as of today, and we did laundry in anticipation of our next few travel days. Big lunch at our mountain home.

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Days 50 – 52; Oct. 18 – 20 – Charlottesville,VA to Lake Lure, NC

Day 50, Friday, Oct. 18 – Charlottesville, VA to Hickory, NC

Left Charlottesville on a rather dreary morning. No colors on the lower elevations. However, the higher we ventured, the more gorgeous the forests. The drive along the Allegheny Parkway was breathtaking. The views were not as sharp as on the Skyline Drive yesterday, but the sunny day today enhanced colors and the views. Lunch at Otter Peaks – strictly for the views of the lovely lake – salad bar lunch was just ok. Arrived in Hickory, NC rather tired, but satiated with the beautiful sights. Excellent Fairfiled Inn.

Day 51, Saturday, Oct.19 – Hickory, NC to Biltmore to Lake Lure.

Morning travel through heavy fog and drizzle. Went to see the Biltmore Estate outside of Ashville, NC, built around 1894. What a place!!! Talk about decadent oppulance! This place takes the prize. Ole George Vanderbilt spent a whole bunch of his daddy’s railroad wealth. He modeled the castle after a French Loire River chateau, with touches of Versailles. The interior continues the model, rooms lined with huge Flemish tapestries, leather wall coverings, paintings by Renoir. Vanderbilt hired Sargent to come here and paint portraits of the family. The library contains over 20,000 books. Busts galore. Must have been several thousand people touring, and at $50 per just to enter, the place was making a lot of money. 250 acres, 3 resturants, plus winery, plus snack bar places, plus horse back riding, boating, a huge lodge, etc. Peter preferred Jefferson ‘s taste to Vanderbilt’s!

Left there and went on the most winding road we’ve been on. Arrived at out resort destination, Rumbling Bald Resort, on Lake Lure, which is – believe us – in the middle of nowhere, USA – about an hour SE of Asheville in the Appalachian hills on a large, pretty mountain lake. The leaves have just begun to change. Peak here will be in about a week, but as the whole area is heavily wooded, it is indeed quite pretty, especially at higher elevations. Our time share unit has two bedrooms along with the usual living room, kitchen, etc. Good interior decor and views of the woods and the golf course. We will be most comfortable for a week here. We designed the trip to have 3 one week sojourns in one place to provide needed breaks from 1, 2 and 3 night stands

Day 52, Sunday, Oct 20 – Lake Lure

Lazy morning, played 9 holes of golf – not our best, but then again, not our worst. This resort has two excellent golf courses, with reasonably price green fees. Nice to again be in one place for a while. Unpacked all our bags and found some forgotten treasures. Zoned out watching football games and other Sunday TV. The Broncos – Colts game was a big downer. We figured that Peyton Manning was off his feed due to being back, for the first time, in the city and stadium of his 14 glory years.

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Day 49: Thursday, Oct. 17, Skyline Drive and Charlottesville, VA

Thursday: Left Front Royal, Virginia on the Skyline Drive. Although overcast, it was quite breathtaking. Colors were muted and many of the overlooks showed layers of clouds penetrating mountains (the Allegheny’s & Shenandoah’s). Our pictures do not do justice.
Went to Michie’s Tavern, built in 1784, famous for its hearty fare – fried chicken, green-beans, beets, potatoes, homemade biscuits, blackeyed peas, and peach cobbler – and it was very good. Then on to Thomas Jefferson’s home, Monticello. Quite beautiful and interesting history. Jefferson was certainly a selfish, brilliant and multi talented man. Back through old town in Charlettsville, then through the U of V “grounds” and on to our motel. Another great day.

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Day 48, Oct. 16, Philadelphia to Front Royal, VA

We spent the first couple of hours in and about the Lenscrafter shop in King of Prussia, PA, about 30 min. west of Philly. Lois’ reading glasses had fallen out of her pocket in a cab, and had to be replaced. Why King of Prussia, you might ask? Phil Alandt says it was in tribute for the great assistance given by the Prussians in the Revolutionary War. The highlight here, beyond getting L’s new glasses, was finding a Legal Seafood restaurant near Lenscrafter where we had a delicious lunch of raw oysters, fried oysters and Portuguese seafood stew.

We then were off to the Pennsylvania Dutch country on a byway suggested by our AAA travel consultant, Jane Henninger. The little road went through Compass, Intercourse (that’s really the name!) and Bird in the Hand (named after the sign name of a tavern in the hamlet). Amish riding around in buggys, plowing fields with horses, all dressed in their clothes style of yore. Lois looked at beautiful quilts, Peter had a shoo fly pie.

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Day 47, Oct: 15, Philadelphia

Tuesday: We’ve fallen in love with Philidelphia. It is a lovely city. We arranged to stay an additional day at the Warwick Hotel – which is a great place with the nicest staff imaginable. After a delicious breakfast – how we managed that is not known as we had such a fantastic dinner the night before – we took off to explore more of the city. We started at the National Constitutional Center. Now that is definitely an institution to visit – a beautiful facility. We were there at least 2 hours. In addition to bronzes of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, numerous interactive displays of various issues that had gone to the Supreme Court, a theater presentation of issues around the period of the signing, they had the most extraordinary display of Pulitzer Prize Winner’s photos spanning decades which left us in tears. It was the most stunning acclimation of photography as art as one will ever see. A must if you go.

Leaving the center, we walked down the old town to Betsy Ross’s “house”. On to the “oldest alley in town”, around to Christ Church, which was the first Episcopalian church in America, and then, for a very late lunch, to an Greek/Italian little restaurant on Archer street for a bite. Continued to Independence Mall where Independence Hall was closed due to the garbage still going on in Washington about whether or not the US should pay their bills or not – ask you – what happens if you don’t pay your bills. The tea party chose the wrong issue to make a point. Anyhow, after all the walking, etc., we took a cab back and collapsed for the evening.

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