Before I jump in and tell you about my week, I wanted to follow-up on an item from a couple of weeks ago; we ended up sending back all of the DISH equipment. After numerous software downloads and time on the phone with their not-so-hot line, we determined something wasn’t working right and since we had a 30 day warranty with Amazon we just sent it all back. I have to give AMEX and Amazon huge credit here. We had our credit in less than 24 hours and I feel much better knowing we didn’t lose $700 for a product that does not do what was advertised. It was numerous factors but two things were deal breakers for us. One we could not consistently get the HD channels to come in and secondly I was watching a show in the bedroom and Lee was watching a movie in the living room. When the movie was done he changed the channel and bam! my show went off. Apparently if you watch two shows at the same time they have to be on the same satellite signal (which makes sense), BUT there is no way to tell which channel is on what satellite. When we talked to the “help” desk about it the direct quote was “You’ll figure it out.” Yeah, that was it for me. Anyway, we decided to take advantage of AT&T’s current double data promotion, and double our cellular data instead and now have 80 GB. Because the double data deal is still going on we got 80 GB for the price of 40 GB and we will be watching antenna TV, streaming shows, and using Netflix. It’s not the perfect solution, but we are both MUCH happier with this use of our money and the bill is still within our total budget for internet/phone/cable.
Alright, so enough of that..now on to the fun stuff. I traveled to NYC (well actually Secaucus, NJ) (I don’t blame her for not being willing to admit to being in NJ. I’ve been there. No offense to any friends of ours who are from there, or legitimate businessmen who are from there. – Lee) this week and have to say I missed my nature. The only animal I saw all week was a stray cat and the taxi drivers were routinely displeased by my driving. Work was fine and the people were very nice, but it was a stark contrast to what we have been experiencing in South Carolina. Next week is Columbus, Ohio but that is my hometown and I get to see family, so that should be a lot more fun. I got home on Friday and was pretty tired and then Saturday it rained all day. When you only have the weekend to explore, bad weather is not so fun, but Lee was nice enough to drive me around shopping and we picked up our Christmas gifts for Wendy’s kids. For years we’ve been in separate states at Christmas and since we will be together I wanted to buy actual presents this year (instead of money or gift cards). Buying for the baby was super fun…buying for my 16 year old niece, not so much. 16 year old girls are the worst to buy presents for. I can say this with authority because I have raised three teenage girls!!! (It’s true. They hate everything. – Lee) After shopping we stopped by Wendy’s and saw Bailey, Bryce, and Abram then came back to the camper and got caught up on some TV and just relaxed. I had some serious cabin fever though, mainly because I haven’t seen much of this area so was very excited about the forecasted good weather on Sunday and a trip to Asheville.
Asheville is one of the towns I really wanted to explore in this area and since it’s only about two hours away we decided to take a day trip. As a bonus we got to stop at a Roadside Attraction that my sister Wendy recommended. There is a water tower in Gaffney, SC that is painted like a giant peach. Unfortunately from certain angles it also looks like a giant butt which is hysterical. When we got there we pulled over and we also got to see a man climbing on the peach butt and working on it. Ok seriously, insert your own joke here, because they just write themselves. (I’m not sure what that weird little nubbin is hanging from the bottom of the butt, but they should probably get it lanced or something. – Lee)
So that was fun!! The next roadside attraction was a small restaurant called Harry’s Grill and Piggy’s Ice (you can’t make this stuff up) that has “rescued” advertising statues from other restaurants and has them all outside. It’s in Hendersonville and is well worth the stop. I love the silly and this place was chock full of it. We went on a Sunday (when it was closed) which was actually better because it was easy to take pictures.
So the place was really fun and waaay coooler than we thought it would be. Plus we needed gas anyways, and it was right off the freeway so just a short detour for tons of fun. We finally made it to Asheville, but I have to say I was pretty underwhelmed. It is a hipster kind of place, but coming from the New England area, it looks like tons of small ski villages all throughout Vermont. There are some neat artsy stores, but the prices are pretty high and really it wasn’t that pretty to walk around. We did have an excellent lunch though at a noodle place which was VERY good and had outstanding service. And there was a neat wall right next door where people wrote the things they wanted to do before they died. The answers ranged from “Be on Ellen” to “Be Heard.” I put “see Mount Rushmore and Alaska.”
We saw another roadside attraction in Asheville, a giant iron. Usually I am a sucker for really big common things but this was just so-so. The best part of the whole town really was a London double-decker bus which was converted into a small coffee shop with tables setup on the top of the bus. It was really really neat and Lee loved it. Plus his coffee and my hot chocolate were excellent. Absolutely recommend it, but bring cash as they don’t take credit cards.
After Asheville, we still had plenty of time and Lee wanted to drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The views are absolutely amazing and even though it was probably the least pretty time of year I still found it very compelling. We took tons of pics, so I’ll just share a few of my favorites to give you a feel for the views, but if you are near here in the summer or fall I definitely wouldn’t miss it.
The Parkway goes for 469 miles, so we couldn’t drive the whole thing, so we got off after a while and drove through part of Pisgah National Forest. I was excited because I had also wanted to see the Forest and the route was perfect. We stopped along the way at a couple of places to see the stream running through and then turned a corner and found the Looking Glass Waterfall. I absolutely love love waterfalls and this one was one of the best I have ever seen and it is right off the road. We got some fantastic pictures and I was so grateful we stumbled across this. Truly what this life is about for us and I feel very blessed by the day we had.
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