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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Adventures in the Hundred Acre Wood...

We are not big planners around here.  Last Wednesday night we were sitting on the couch and I got the notion to maybe go somewhere for the holiday weekend.  So I looked at Charlie and said, "So do we want to try to go somewhere this weekend or what?"  And since usually all you have to do with him is say the word GO and he's in, I began my online search for a quiet little weekend vacation rental with a view in the mountains.  

BwaHaHaa!  Turns out I was not the only one who had the idea to head to the mountains for the Fourth of July weekend and all those planners had already reserved everything within a 50 mile radius of Asheville and Blowing Rock.  But I am not easily defeated.  I finally found an available house Thursday night and got a call from the rental company Friday morning to confirm and to make darn sure I had a four wheel drive because "you're gonna need it to get to this property" she said.  

Luckily, Charlie has a four wheel drive truck with a backseat so we were good.  

And she did not lie.  

This place was way up atop a winding mountain one lane gravel road and each time we made the trek back up to that house, my nerves kicked in and made me feel a little like I'd just eaten a greasy cheeseburger. 

But the view was worth it...

And no, we don't normally let Dracen drink wine but it was a holiday weekend.   

Kidding.  Just kidding!  He just likes to steal my seat.  

We had a quiet relaxing night on Saturday and were enjoying our sleeping in on Sunday when I awoke about 9 am to a noise outside our bedroom window.  And since we were on top of a mountain surrounded by the great big woods, my first thought was bear.  Then I thought maybe I was just imagining things so I closed my eyes back when I swore I heard voices.  

I peeked in on the boys to make sure they weren't up and into some crazy shenanigans outside but they were both still sound asleep.

So I peeked through our bedroom blinds and there was Billy Bob sharpening what looked like a big ole knife on the back of his old blue pickup truck in the middle of the driveway while Bobbie Sue walked around puffing on a Marlboro and when I glanced into the woods on top of the hill I saw what I thought was a shirtless man but as my eyes began to focus more clearly, I realized it was a very in shape and muscled up woman in a brown tank top.!?

I had all kinds of crazy thoughts start zipping around in my mind as I tried to make sense of this and most of them were based on Deliverance and serial killers.  

"There's somebody out here!" I shouted to Charlie.  He leapt outta bed and came over to the blinds with me and that's when we saw that what I thought was a blade was a chainsaw and Billy Bob and muscle man Marla proceeded to cut wood LOUDLY while Bobbie Sue supervised with her cell phone and Marlboro.  I just wanted to know one in the bajeebies did she have cell phone service up here?!  

"What should we do?!" I asked.  "Where's the number for the rental place?" Charlie wanted to know.  I got it for him and he got in touch with the person on call who happened to be the owner of the rental company and he had no inkling as to who these people were or why they were here and said that the owners of this house are a three hour time difference away so he would just come up there and talk to them.  

But I guess Charlie's manly man protectiveness kicked in because he started putting on his clothes and shoes and said he was going out to talk to them.  Ohhh No!  I thought, as I began to chew on my fingers...This could go bad...This could go very, very bad!    

The boys and I hunched up at the windows and as soon as he walked out on the porch I saw Bobbie Sue put her hand in the air and wave and smile with a WTH? look on her face.  Oh good, she's smiling and waving.  They come in peace...They come in peace.  

But I was still nervous and couldn't watch anymore so I walked away from the window until he came back in and informed us that "Mac" (the owner, I guess) had asked Billy Bob and his assistant, Manly Marla, to cut some firewood and put it under the porch and when he saw Charlie's truck with the orange toolbox on the back he assumed he was somebody there working.  He said Manly Marla seemed the most uncomfortable about the situation as she threw up her hand and said, "Aww man, I understand, you're on vacation." 

But Billy Bob apparently just had dollar signs in his eyes because he wanted to at least get one load done so he asked Charlie if he'd just let him do one load before they left.  He told him that was fine since we were all awake now anyway but they were gone within 10 minutes after he came back inside.  I suspect Manly Marla made that call. 

Yesterday before we came home we headed to Mount Mitchell State Park, the highest elevation this side of the Mississippi, and our GPS lady decided to take us down an unmarked gravel road through the hundred acre wood to get there.  And she didn't even know we had a four wheel drive.  

I have to admit that although it was a little nerve-wrenching at times, it was all kinds of exciting, especially when we had a wild turkey and her babies run across the road trail in front of us. I just kept saying, "Are you sure she's (the GPS lady voice...we have conversations with her regularly) taking us to the right place? What address did you put in there?"  

We finally made it to the top of Mount Mitchell... 6,684 feet up in the clouds...

Then we got real adventurous and decided to hit the hiking trail and although I thought I was going to keel over before we made it back up, it was breathtakingly beautiful and somewhat magical and I kept having thoughts of Pooh Bear, Piglet, Eeyore and Christopher Robin  dancing around in my mind because it felt exactly like we were in the same hundred acre wood....

I was having me a jolly good time with the camera...

 ...Right up until I saw this sign...

"Bear Sanctuary.  BEAR SANCTUARY?!!"   And then I forgot all about Pooh Bear and started thinking of real life bears who may or may not want to eat one of my wiener dogs for a snack and I was suddenly all about making our way back out of the hundred acre wood!  


  1. That view is breathtaking!!!! What a fun adventure! :)

    Very funny story, but yet, a tad scary! :) I'm a HUGE baby when it comes to those sort of things...I would have seen the strangers and started FREAKING OUT!!! :) Good for you guys for remaining calm. I would have sworn they were killers and called 911 before I could even wake up my hubby! :)

    Great pics!

  2. Manly Marla...hahah! I would have paid to see the look on your face!
    Glad you all got away. Sounds and looks heavenly.

  3. HAHAHA!

    Beautiful scenery. Glad you guys got to get away:)

  4. What a great story!! I'm also laughing about your character names. Your photos make me wanna come visit.

  5. I'm guessing you were on the west side? So I'm figuring I'm safe from the bears, although we've seen 2 black bears out in fields here within the last 6 months!

    You sure were in some gorgeous country though, but those people outside would have freaked me out too!

  6. What beautiful scenery! I would love to go hiking in the NC mountains. Sounds like a nice trip (minus being woken up early!)

  7. But where are your photos of Billy Bob and crew?? That was such a funny post! And with beautiful pictures, too.
    You've given me an early morning chuckle!
    (oh and we wonder about our GPS "lady" too!)

  8. Sounds like you had a great time. You certainly had a beautiful view. Oh, btw, I hate the GPS lady too.

  9. Great story! What a fun weekend :)

  10. I've seen that deck on ads for vacation rentals around here. Sounds like a great time. Now I know why people take weekends closer to home than my husband worked when we lived when we were in the big city.

  11. Looks like fun! Yeah the bear sanctuary sign would've freaked me out too. I totally get you because I am also not much of a planner. I like to do things on the spur of the moment. Happt SITS day!

  12. So glad to find you on SITS! I love how you refer to life now as your Chapter 2. Such a great attitute and perspective.

  13. Yeah your post reminds me of the movie Perfect Getaway ( for some reason. But what an adventure!!

    stopping by from SITS.

  14. Yeah, a sign reading: "Bear Sanctuary" would not leave ME feeling very peaceful, but, after all, when we go in the woods, we have to remember that is really is their habitat. They have to live somewhere!

    Visiting you from SITS. :-D

    Your family is adorable.

  15. LOL....
    Sounds like you had quite a time out there. One that I am sure the boys will be talking about for years to come.

  16. Hahahaha, this is awesome!! Didn't want to stick around to see some of those bears, eh? Guess I don't blame you. Also, the Deliverance part was hysterical, thanks for sharing!

  17. Sounds like such a wonderful trip! I wouldn't want to stick around to see the bears either!

  18. How beautiful it was there...and Bear Sanctuary! Yikes LOL

  19. Wow! What a fun adventure! and Beautiful too! I want summer back!! LOL

  20. You are a woman after my own heart and I wish we lived in the same town!

    We did the same thing, rented a vacation home on the beach, and it was amazing. We took our dogs, we had long walks on the beach, the view was something else, and we loved it.

    I love your images. Your vacation looks great. I'm getting such a kick out of your blog! It's lovely to connect with someone like you.

    Congrats on your SITS Day!

  21. Looks like a fabulous, spur of the moment kind of adventure I like. Glad you made it out safely!

  22. This is hilarious. I would have totally had the same thoughts about the people outside. But when I saw the photo of the Bear Sanctuary sign I started laughing so much I had to explain the whole thing to my husband so he wouldn't think I was crazy. What an adventure!

  23. Among my hobbies, the favourite one is to travel in mountaineous areas. The weather, clouds, tress, nature everything is so mesmerizing in montains. I wish to live forever in mountains

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