Vacation ’08: Day 4

This morning Nana, Randy and the kids went on their traditional nature walk near the house. There is a gravel road out behind the house and they usually go for an hour hike to gather rocks and walking sticks.

Sourwood Festival ’08

As the kids were eating breakfast, Becky and I decided to steal a few minutes alone and sneak off to get her a real coffee. Since the nearest Starbucks is 20 miles away, I Googled coffee for Black Mountain and found a cool little coffee shop called Powerhouse Perks. A mom & pop Christian business. It was only like five minutes away so off we went. We would meet up with the rest of the group at the 31st Annual Sourwood Festival later on. We reached the road where the shop was but it was blocked off due to the festival… ugh. So we parked and walked to the caffeine haven. It is a cool little shop… Jack Johnson was playing softly so I knew we found a good spot. We grabbed a table and Beck set out to capture her java bean prize. A grande mocha latte with whip cream. I just enjoyed the smells and browsed the C. S. Lewis books on the shelf. We sat, chatted a bit and just enjoyed a break from the endless chaos of the kids.

After a bit of browsing we met up with the rest of the troops and proceeded to walk around the festival. Then we heard this really loud horn. A train was coming through the middle of the festival. We were able to get within 10 feet of the crossing and let the kids experience the raw power of a locomotive up close. The loudness of it. The way it makes the ground rumble as it rolls by. It was a great thing for them to get to feel. After the train we continued on. A ton of crafts and one-of-a-kind things awaited us in booth after booth. There was really too much to cover in detail but if you have ever been to a crafts festival you get the idea. But enjoy some pictures from some of the booths.

After a couple of hours of browsing I realized that I had not eaten anything all day. Now I could have gone the traditional route and walked down Coronary Alley and gotten some Polish sausage or gyro or ribbon fries or something deep fried and on a stick. But I caught the smell of something irresistible… something primal… something smoked… it could only be… RIBS!

We walked over to the smokers. We just followed the smoke in the air… and the trail of drool from the line of zombie mountain men sway stepping their way to the nirvana of pork. And then I saw it. Mecca! 50 feet of smoker grill! and 6-7 other smokers all chugging away. It was truly an awesome sight.

The BBQ masters were busy rubbing, basting, marinating, flipping, cutting, stoking, chopping hickory… the list went on. The smell would make you drool. I mean really drool. So that was it. I found my lunch. The rest of the group rested under a tree while I went to bag my meal. The choice was simple… a full rack. For $18 it was a steal. It came with beans, slaw and a roll to boot. All to help buy new uniforms for the local high school band. I was glad to help. After I scored my meat it was time to retreat back to the cave where I could grunt and moan in BBQ bliss. We got back and I tore into half the rack. Amazing. Worth the wait. I even taught Sierra and Chandler the fine art of rib eating. They have a new favorite now. After filling our tummies we settled in for a peaceful afternoon.

After a while Nana returned from the festival and it was time to head off to dinner. I really wasn’t in the mood to go as I was still doing the belly rub from the ribs, but the words ‘traditional Mexican food’ were uttered and of course I couldn’t resist… Fajitas popped into my head and I had to go. We went to Ole’s Guacamoles Mexican Kitchen. Wow it was good. the kids got recharged with Fanta Orange Soda and we needed to let them run off some sugar so we headed for Montreat Park. The kids love this place. They have a creek running through the middle of the park that is fed from a dam up the way a bit. We took some cute photos of the Zoo Crew.

We let them run around crazy then headed back to the house for baths and a movie. Tonight’s features: Open Season (for the kids) and Definitely, Maybe (for the adults). Of course I’m in the kitchen blogging, but from what I can hear from the other room… I’m not missing much. LOL I may actually get to bed before midnight tonight, but then again maybe not. I may grab the TV for a bit after everyone goes to bed. Honestly, community TV is not my first choice. The bad part is it is satellite, which is fine, but all three TV’s in the house are on the same box so when you change the main TV channel the bedroom channels change as well. Kind of disconcerting if you aren’t expecting it.

I took a ton of pics today and can’t post them all here but you can browse the album on my Facebook page.

Anyway I think that’s about it for Day 4…