Well, I didn’t know what the hell I was going to do after Charlotte. But, everybody else seemed to know: Asheville! So, I went to Asheville.

I got the name of a highway wrong and my uncle reminded me that north/south highways are odd numbers and east/west are even. He’s from NC so he knows exactly where I was–I even passed his boyhood home. So I asked him: why was it when I left Charlotte, my GPS took me on 85 South but my compass most definitely said NW. Asheville is most definitely NW of Charlotte. Along 85 South or something.

Asheville is amazing. Nestled along the blue ridge mountains (Appalachians), it boasts a week or more worth of stuff to do. I was trying to get my damn GoPro to work. I finally did, for nothing. My first trip was to Chimney Rock State Park. 74A straight to it. The GoPro didn’t do the drive justice. My cousin, a motorcycle person, told me of a road called something like the dragon’s tail with more switchbacks then any other road. I think I found it.

I think some civil engineer was drinking on the job. Heavily. It’s roads like that, though, that make me dream of my Lexus F Sport. It would have been a hell of a ride or I would have died.

Chimney Rock is just amazing. It boasts the largest waterfall east of the Mississippi. I pulled up and bypassed the bus to take you up. Hiking up seemed like a good idea at the time? But it was a nice hike with some awesome views. One shirt I saw in the gift shop said it best: The Mountain Called: I Gotta Go! I do love the mountains, especially knowing the hike down will be much easier than the hike up. I did encourage people on my way down that were just starting out: I’m lazy, out of shape and unhealthy; if I can do it, anybody can.

After the hike, I stopped in at a coffee shop. Why do people insult me by asking if I want cold coffee? It sucked anyway. But in the shop was this really cool picture that showed Chimney Rock before everything:

The drive back to Asheville along the Dragon’s Tail, making it very difficult to sip coffee and light cigarettes. Then, I met another UM friend at the Biltmore Estate, the largest residence ever built in the US. It was just amazing! Nothing I have ever seen can compare. I just can’t even imagine living there. It would take an army of staff just to maintain the place and a game of hide and seek could go on for months.

And now it’s time. A drive up the Blue Ridge Parkway awaits and then for some reason reason, I feel a pull to go into horse country.