Mom Knapping Part I

There are a lot of good people in this world. More than bad, I think. They’re out there, quietly giving — caring for friends like they’re family and strangers like they’re friends. I think these people live humbly, and for the most part, rather happily. I think they don’t consider themselves generous; they hardly consider themselves at all.

Like my mom, who put me first for 23 years.

This Thanksgiving, I had the opportunity to return the good. To treat her. Take her new places. Show her a side of the country and herself that have always been more than an arm’s length away.

And it’s all because the good people at my work called me out to ATL for business over the holiday weekend, and sent me with a loved one so I wouldn’t spend Thanksgiving alone eating Rolos in an AMC theater.

Grateful.

Here’s how chapter one of this holiday mom knapping went down: SFO to Charlotte, NC. Night drive from Charlotte to Asheville. Airbnb stay in see-your-breath-it’s-so-damn-cold Asheville. Leave SYBISDC-Asheville 2 days early because of the SDC weather (read: ill-equipped Jetta and Californian from beachtown, USA weren’t cut out for the surprise storm and icy road conditions/snow that came with it.)

But we made the most of our short time there. We learned about George Vanderbilt – himself, his family, his subtle and quaint home in the countryside — ate unbelievable food, drank local beer, took a few strolls around the colorful town.

Above all, Mom adroitly assumed the role of world’s greatest co-pilot/Siri whisperer and got us everywhere we needed to go safely. From downtown to down the Blue Ridge Parkway. She even let me listen to John Denver through it all. What a gal.

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Stumbled upon a ‘lil vintage shop downtown where I bought a piece of art that warrants it’s own blog post. I also bought a puffy vest. It makes me look like a bumble bee.

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Then we contributed to the Vanderbilt fortune with wine tasting and a tour of the tiny property.

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One day I’ll camp the crap out of these blue ridge mountains. I’ll have a pack and a down bag and greasy hair and really strong soles and soul.

Until then, I’ll have the fond memory of chills jumping up my spine — both from the view and from the temperature.

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Our last meal in Asheville was at Rhubarb. It was as charming and warm as a 1940’s love letter, and as hip as The Mission’s hippest hipster. The menu matched the decor: original, tasteful, daring.

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My lady likes local beers. I like that about her.

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And then…. we drove from NC to ATL. This is our South Carolina Selfie.

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More to come!

2 Comments

  1. Can I volunteer to go backpacking with you in NC? I have a ton of miles saved up and a “friend flies free” voucher that has Nicole e-stamped all over it!

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