Saturday we began to go over our check-list of check-lists for packing for the two month journey. Our friend Frannie came by to wish us and “Stand-up-Hagrid” a bon voyage. On Sunday morning the 19th we awoke to rain. Soon my niece Haley arrived- our house-sitter and full time entertainment for Leia (Stand-up-Hagrid’s little sister) while we’re away. Soon we were on the road to Asheville, the first stop on the trip.
We had a great couple of days with our friend Rena in Asheville. Hagrid posed for a couple of photo’s at Rena’s house and at the local public library. After a wonderful hike along the French Broad River we enjoyed a incredible dinner with Rena and her son Eric and turned in early. Bright and early the next day we set out for TN to visit with storyteller Dianne Hackworth on her own little mountain top paradise in Dutch Valley north of Knoxville.
After a daring zigging-and-zagging up the graveled driveway remembering to “gun it” at the last incline we arrived at Dianne’s immediately settled in on the porch- we had our pick of resting place- chair, bench, hammock, glider, rocker, or swing. The swing is always the favorite for most folks- it sits ten, yes I said ten- or eight if you of the hefty-variety. That night we were invited by Dianne’s family to join in a Birthday Pork Chop supper for Dianne- she got to select the menu. It was a raucous evening with stories and laughs and even kids running around. Thanks Jan and Roger for the incredible dinner and the even more incredible stories!
Over the next couple of days Dianne and Zane Grady the Cat entertained us. Hagrid had a few more photo op’s. We took a tour of downtown “Antique Central” Clinton, TN, had barbeque by the river and drove through infamous and secretive Oak Ridge, TN. The most adventurous jaunt was hiking an old logging trail down the back side of Dianne’s mountain and back. That made for a sound night’s sleep and ready to head out early the next morning for Columbus, IN.