Friday, May 15, 2009


Can't you just hear Willie Nelson singing his signature song? Trust me, he sounds better than we do, but this is how R., me and the ‘kids’ (Randy and Hazel) start out every trip we take. Usually one of us will try and serenade the others and it’s not a pretty picture.

Anyway, I promised you news from afar and here’s my Back East Bloglog and I’ll do my best to keep you entertained.

As you know, nothing in my (our) life goes without a funny or two, so sit back and relax while I tell you a few stories…

After packing the car, we settle in for the BIG adventure. Rain tags along, but after a few prayers, the downpour ceases and blue skies carry us to our first stop—Gulfport, Mississippi (my brother and sis-in-law’s home for a family fix and free lodging-thanks S. & P).

I announce our arrival and brother comes out and gives me a hug, but his perplexed expression tells me I must be sporting more than one head. Curiosity gets the best of me and I ask. “Didn’t you get our message?”

He goes over to their phone and sure enough that pesky light is blinking. “Guess we didn’t check messages when we got home last night.” He laughs and assures us we’re welcome and we spend the evening chatting, eating take-out and watching Dancing With The Stars. Life is grand.

The next morning we say our goodbyes and R. heads out on the road again (are you humming the tune yet?), while I map out our next stop—Chattanooga, Tennessee. Somewhere in Alabama I take my turn driving. About an hour later I hear, “you want to take off on some back roads?” People, I almost swerve into the other lane ‘cause this unexpected declaration is coming from the man who only travels major highway.

Before he changes his mind I nod my head. R. says our next stop is Rome, Georgia. As I meander through the rolling hills, the azaleas burst forth in pink, purple and white. I thank God for their awesome beauty.

We arrive in Rome and peruse their Visitor’s Center. They laden us with brochures and we decide it’s too early to call it a day. Next stop—Blue Ridge, Georgia. The Smokey Mountains and the Appalachian Trail are calling our name.

For those who know me will say I can lay it on pretty thick when I’m talking about the Rocky Mountains of Colorado. Let’s just say the scenery our eyes beheld as we drove through Georgia was almost as spectacular. Dogwoods, dotted with pink and white flowers, and mighty evergreens blanket the mountainside. An amazing sight!

We find Blue Ridge, Georgia nestled near the top of the Smokey Mountains. I decide we need stay at a bed and breakfast, not some ordinary hotel. R. locates The Blue Ridge Inn and the owner, Milt Darden, welcomes us inside. Late April is their slow season, so we have our choice of rooms. We decide to stay downstairs in The Rose Room. Its Victoria charm invites us to enter.

Later in the evening we explore the upstairs of the grand home built in 1890 (Milt said it was okay). I notice plaques above each door. We venture in to see the rooms and their theme comes alive in the furnishings. Stuffed bears and a canoe in the Cabin Room and a baseball bat and ball and football in the Sport Room.

The last room we check out is the Marilyn Monroe Room. Pictures of her adorn the walls and there’s even a life-size cardboard cut-out of her in the corner. Her white dress bellowing in an imaginary breeze. This all seems a little creepy to me. . .but then I thought. . .what about an Elvis Presley Room?

Guess I’ll have to talk to R. about this idea. Hey, maybe I’ll do it while I have him trapped inside our car for the next three days. But, for now I’ll end my rambling. Tune in next week and I’ll tell you the rest of our BIG adventure to Virginia. Hold on to your hats – our tales will keep you on the edge of your seats.

Love ya,


Unknown said...

Janetta, this sounds FABULOUS! Oh, I'm glad you posted this. I love Gulfport and I've been to the area where you are now, so I know what you're talking about! I went to college in Tennessee (and have driven through the southern states to get there) so I know how pretty the drive can be. Have an awesome time. . .and keep those updates coming!

Kathy Burnett said...

We miss you! I didn't know you were leaving till you were gone. I was so sad when Annette told me, but you sound so happy I guess it's okay.Didn't even hear about it at work cause I work at night and no one tells us anything! Love, love, love your blog. Feel like I'm sitting right in the back seat. Keep me posted!

Annette O’Hare said...

Oh Janetta you make me so jealous to be "on the road again." I love traveling! That's so funny about your brother not knowing to expect you. Can you say awkward! Kathy is right, you sound so HAPPY, even in your writing. So if you know it, clap your hands! Clap, clap, clap!I'm clapping with you because even though I'm jealous...I'm totally happy for you and Mr. R.

JudyP-M said...

Hi Janetta/Ray....Toastmaster's is surviving but not as well w/o you there. We miss you and hope you will be back soon. It's almost time for reelection of officers. Wanna keep your spot? Like your blog. Tell Ray he found me a "good" one in Abilene, TX. He's a keeper. Met him over Mother's Day when I went to see my son. We'll meet again the last weekend in May at my townhome in HSB. Came in first in my age group in the CB&I Tri and also was the oldest woman finisher. Will do another tri this Sunday. Today I am working for Gayle at a gathering at The Woodlands Church. Hurry home but have lots of fun in the meantime.

DebbieDoesLife said...

So glad to hear from you!! We got the son commissioned and graduated so my life will hopefully settle down now. You on the other hand are just getting started!! Take care and keep us posted.

Caleb's mom said...

Sounds like a rollicking good time for the entire family. Tell the kids hi! Give 'em a little squeeze. : ) They look so cute in the photo! Keep having fun on this adventure of your life. XXOO Love, Rhonda

Linda Kozar said...

Hey Janetter--Miss you, woman! Fun road trip reporting. Linda likey.

Can't wait to see more of the kids in photos. Hope you post some to the WOTS bloggy.

Say Hi to Ray!

dwanreed said...

Janetta, you are having too much fun without us. You are supposed to say, "Life is no fun without you Words for the Journey" people. Just joking. I am so glad you, Ray, Randy, and Hazel are having a good time. Take care.