Sunday, April 21, 2013

Annual Road Trip South - Day Two

Hampton Inn Marion North Carolina

We made it!  After a LONG trip from Emporia, VA to our present destination, Marion, NC.  I am exhausted.  I'll sleep good again tonight.

Me with a serious case of bed hair trying to cut a waffle with a plastic knife and fork on a styrofoam plate

I've done all the driving so far.  I wasn't expecting this but be that as it may.  Today's trip wasn't as bad as going through Norfolk with all it's twisty, hilly road but still pretty hairy.  I traveled almost the entire length of the state from the east to the western border.  I used US40.  The only nerve wracking parts was where I had to drive around the major North Carolina cities like Durham, Greensboro and Winston-Salem.  All those extra roads and exits and mergers right and left and traffic.  I had to really concentrate that I was in the right lane and unfortunately I couldn't spend a lot of time chatting with Bill.  He got his feelings hurt and now isn't talking (much) too me.  And of course one time he told me to turn, I knew it was wrong but I did it anyway (it said "East" and I knew we were going west).  He really felt bad about that and I probably wasn't too kind to him.  I apologized to him.  This is usually what happens when we're driving too long.  I get stressed out and Bill get angry and we end up fighting.  

We stopped at a beautiful rest stop at Catawba. I thought that would sooth down Bill.  He does so love being in the mountains and today was one of those clear, blue days with the crispness of early spring in the air.  The redbud trees are in bloom and the leaves are just starting to pop out on the trees. I chatted with an elderly gentleman about his electric blue 2002 Corvette.  And he's driving that beauty on US40 with those ten wheelers?  That takes courage that I don't have.

One snazzy Corvette encountered at a rest stop off of U.S. 40 today

We got to our destination, the Hampton Inn in Marion.  We were only here about a half an hour when my cousin Bob and his wife Marie drove up.  We were to meet and I was going to show him the paternal ancesteral homeland tomorrow.  We got settled in and then went out for an early dinner.  I hadn't eaten all day and was famished.  

My cousin Bob and his wife Marie at the Jalapenos Fast Grill this afternoon before the onslaught of food
The front desk clerk at the hotel strongly advised a small Mexican restaurant nearby called Jalapenos Fast Grill.  At 4 pm we were the first dinner guests.  We took a look at the menu and wow!  The Agave restaurant in Lewes would be impressed by the selection and the prices.  I don't think anything was over $10.00 I've posted a video below of the food being brought out and presented.  I've never had anything like this before.  Truly, truly impressed.  Unfortunately we just could not eat all this food.  One more thing, the tortilla chips and salsa at the beginning?  Magnifique!

Tomorrow we visit old family cemeteries up in those mountains.  This will probably be my last trip. I'm looking forward to it.


anne marie in philly said...

sounds VERY stressful so far; not a vacation! :(

waaaaay too much food there, but it DOES look dee-lish!

David Jeffreys said...

Ron, that is a long trip across NC on I-85 & I-40 (not US 40). Actually I-40 in NC follows the old US-70 route. When you were in Durham, you were only 20 miles south of Lady Slipper Cove, my farm! I grew up in a Durham house on Broad Street, which was only 2.5 blocks from your route on I-85 thru Durham!

Have a great time in them thar hills!


Ron said...

Anne Marie,

Today was SOOO much better. We spent the day with my cousin Bob Tipton and his wife Marie, a delightful couple. Bill came along. He didn't want to at first but I'm glad he did. He also had a wonderful time. Together we were headed for a meltdown. Spending the day with Bob and Marie (Bob drove and he is an excellent driver) thus took all the stress off of me and Bill. We leave tomorrow for my brother's home in Greenville, SC. Bill's driving. Shouldn't be too bad, it's a straight shot.


Ron said...


Wow, very close! I wish we could have stopped by but both of us were so stressed out you didn't want to be anywhere near us.


Anonymous said...

Sounds like some of my road trips! Glad you're both still in the vehicle.

Hope the rest of the trip is awesome!

Peace <3

Ron said...


Today was awesome! Bill and I spent it with my cousin Bob Tipton and his wife. The weather was perfect and they were delightful. Bill and I were having problems which was getting worse and worse because of my driving but Bob showed us his latest Garmin GPS with the voice command and turn by turn directions plus a real picture of the turnoffs. Bill and I are going to buy one when we get to Greenville, SC tomorrow when I visit my brother. We had a wonderful day in the mountains today. More in my blog.