One of my nephews graduated high school on Friday, which beckoned me
back home up to NC this weekend. I began my journey at the absolute stupidest time of 4:30pm on Thursday (I know, I knoooow – that was not the initial leaving time I’d planned) and arrived at my sister’s a little after midnight. I drove back today, with thankfully much less traffic to contend with, and am still in a fun state of trying to sort out where I am in the space time continuum. I guess traveling through three states in four days will do that.
Even though it was a whirlwind weekend of sorts, it was an awesome one. I got to hold my great niece for the first time since she was born almost a year ago. (Yes, great niece – does that make me old? No, it just means I’m a great aunt no matter what I do). I’m not sure she quite knew what to think of me since the first facial expression I received was “fart face” but I got a few smiles before leaving too.
Along with some much needed quality time with a whole gang of other amazing people, I also got a break from what’s become the daily sights of just day-to-day life. Now mind you, Marietta, GA has plenty of its own charm and so does the urban jungle of Atlanta just a short drive away from where I live. But they’ll never be a match for Climax, Siler City, and Silk Hope, NC. This is the land of family and the type of landscape I’ve known since birth. (Yes, Georgia has pretty farm land as well – but no one I share genes with lives there so NC wins).
Of course before I left the the Tarheel state, I had to make one mandatory stop and get an edible souvenir. You see, my husband and I only hail one form of barbecue as being real barbecue and that is the wonderful Eastern North Carolina vinegar-based style. This has not been easy to come by in Georgia, which favors that thick and sugary sauce. And so, before my couple hundred mile trek down I-85, I swung by Smithfield’s Chicken ‘N Bar-B-Q and grabbed two pounds of delectable happiness.
Sadly for out-of-towners like me, Smithfield’s is ONLY found in NC – thank goodness for coolers and ice packs to keep future dinner safe and yummy for the long ride home!