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"There's So Much Nature!"

September 6, 2016

Tags: hiking, walking, mountains, England, Ashe County Arts Council

We're getting ready to go on a big hike in England at the end of the month. In the run up to this trip, we've been jaunting around the High Country, tackling as many trails and logging as many miles as we can in between everything else that seems to be swirling around us right now.

Up on Elk Knob, Henry, buddy Kevin, and I were paused for a snack before trekking back down the mountain when up popped a group of college kids who exclaimed at the view, "There's so much nature!" We laughed. They were embarrassed. But, indeed there's a shitload of nature around here. I've been trying my best to enjoy it, while grinding out some miles in preparation for the Cotswold Way, 103 miles, in 7 days.

But before we get on that plane, Henry is recording a single in Nashville and traveling to Banff for work. I've got the On the Same Page Literary Festival descending next week (don't miss it if you can www.onthesamepagefestival.org) and all the getting ready those things entail.

Not to pile on too much, but this year's exhibit at the Ashe County Arts Center running in conjunction with the Literary Festival, is the pairing of artists and writers called More Than Words. I've written two poems to go along with the gorgeous art work of Joanie Bell. Coincidentally, we've both spent a good amount of time in the UK, stayed in some of the same Landmark Trust properties, and hiked many of the same landscapes there. So, we decided to inspire one another with a very English twist this year. Come on out and see our work, and that of many other visual artists paired with writers from our region. To wet your whistle to do so, here are my two poems. Click on the "More Than Words" link to your left. You'll have to come to the Arts Center to see Joanie's work that goes with them.

Trip to the Alps - Extraordinary

March 24, 2012

Tags: Alps, France, Switzerland, mountains, Mont Blanc, Geneva, snowshoe

We have returned from our trip of a lifetime. To celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary we booked a trip with Wilderness Travel for snowshoeing in the Alps. Friends who have been on trips with the company highly recommended them and we were ready to go for it.

Since early November, we worked on, working up to, this trip. Diets and keeping strict track of all food (myfitnesspal.com) kicked off our process. By two months out, we were doing daily workouts or hikes. I even wore my boots on the elliptical. It really paid off. We were in top shape and did very well physically - no injuries, little soreness, etc. By the end of the days, we were tired, but a good tired. (more…)

Bread and Milk?

January 29, 2010

Tags: snow, storm, mountains, food

Back in the early 90s, the region was struck with a once-every-100-year snowstorm. Its intensity and strength were unexpected. Elizabeth, who was about 10 at the time, Henry and I headed out of Charlotte on a Friday afternoon for a weekend getaway in Blowing Rock, a resort town a couple of hours away from Charlotte. While we expected to see a few flakes of snow, and that's why we went up there, it was March and no one, I mean no one, predicted the couple feet of snow that fell. (more…)

SNOWSTORM!!!???!!!

December 17, 2009

Tags: mountains, weather, snow, Christmas, ski

What ho. Or maybe what "ho ho ho." We're looking at major snows, starting tomorrow, and running right up through Christmas Eve day.

I know, I should be worried about that fundraiser tomorrow night, the press releases, the maybe last-minute trip to WV for work, the family coming into town (probably not now). But (more…)

Seeing Midnight

December 9, 2009

Tags: sleep, cold, rain, snow, mountains, writing, cats

I'm not usually up at this hour. It's after midnight and normally I'd have been wracked out for a few hours by now. A crap cold and a medicinal paradox effect seem to be at work.

You'd think I could find a cheesy Christmas movie on cable this time of year/night, but I (more…)