First things first, today marks twenty-three years we’ve been married.
Has it been all sunshine and roses? No.
For one, life has its storms. Secondly, she has all kinds of allergies, and she doesn’t like flowers.
All you young guys, find yourself someone who will put up with who you actually are. Don’t settle for someone that you have to be fake in front of. Get you a woman who will love you for all of your strengths and all of your weaknesses.
That’s what I did. Her strengths shore up my weaknesses. My strengths shore up her weaknesses. We are a perfect match.
It isn’t easy to find someone like that. But I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it for twenty-six years. I think Mags has too.
Happy anniversary, Mags! Here’s to twenty-three more and going back to the top of some random mountain.
We’re headed home today and that means a last drive along the BRP and a trail or two.
But we gotta fuel up.
We’re creatures of habit.
We find a place we like, and we go there. The prices here are great, and the food is phenomenal.
It’s not crowded; many people don’t even give the place a second glance because the road is just a means to get from point A to point B. We take it slow and find neat places. And that’s what the journey is all about.
Good coffee. No-frills food. My kinda place.
Food’s here. I’ll be back later.
We headed on down the BRP after breakfast trying to get over to finally hike Devil’s Courthouse.
It was rough driving this morning due to fog.
I need to stop here and do a little PSA.
If you’ve never driven this road, then your first time attempting it shouldn’t be in the fog. There are signs posted warning against driving in these conditions.
IF you do take this chance, please, for the love of God, turn on your blasted headlights.
I’m extremely comfortable with this road. It’s one of the few things in life I can call a real passion. I know this road.
I saw so many people not slowing down for road conditions, no lights on, pulling out in front of folks this morning.
I want to get home safe. I want her home safe. I want everyone to get home safe.
We finally made it back to Devil’s Courthouse today.
Mags taught me an important lesson today; she doesn’t rush because of her knees. I tend to power up the hills. She had me slow down to her pace, and I was barely winded when we reached the summit. Another life lesson, find someone who can always make you better.
The view from here is impressive, even when it is hampered by cloud cover, like today. There’s a cave underneath where peregrine falcons come to breed. I’d love to see the cave, but it is understandably off-limits.
We made great time going up today. Probably because we already knew what to expect. I was still impressed. Neither of us even broke a sweat.
And this was kind of our thing for our anniversary and a theme for our marriage. We said we were going back to the summit of the Courthouse today, and we did.
We said I do twenty-three years ago, and we have. We will continue to do so.
Twenty-three years ago today, we both went all in.
We headed out to Graveyard Fields today expecting a leisurely walk to a nice waterfall. We were sorely mistaken. Literally sorely mistaken.
There are many things we could do and want to, but as she said today, we aren’t in shape enough to do some of them.
The Upper Falls we’re worth the hike, and the soreness, though. We will pay for it over the next couple of days.
Devils Courthouse is tomorrow. We’re pacing ourselves, and we can pick it up on the drive out home. It’s right off the parkway.
We decided to take a ride and visit some old haunts the rest of the day.
One of these is the Masonic Marker off the parkway down past Mile High Overlook.
There’s supposedly a Deep Underground Military Base there or D.U.M.B.
A couple of years ago, we saw a military vehicle parked at Mile High overlook one night, and it was still there the following day.
Now you can believe what you want, everywhere else along the Blue Ridge Parkway in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the phone service is terrible. Running most of the stuff on this blog this week has had to go through Wi-Fi. I’m lucky I stayed at hotels with great Wi-Fi because there’s not a lot up here.
Out at the Masonic Marker, though, I’m uploading five or six pics for an IG post, checking email and Twitter. Go figure. Maybe they finally got a good signal up here, or maybe there’s a bit of truth to what people talk about.
There are a few places you can feel pride and see pride in the service of others anymore.
One of those is the Cherokee Veterans Park in Cherokee, North Carolina.
I am proud of my service. I am proud of anyone who served in anyone who served with me. No greater sacrifice can a man make than to lay down his life for his brother or sister. And all my sisters in service or who have served this goes for you too.
And then this, but you can feel the pride of the Cherokee people for those who have served. I know this park is all about the Cherokee tribe members, but I feel like they’re glad to have had all of us, and I am thankful for that.
I am very curious about the statue of PFC Charles George. The placement of the statue in the way it faces seems to be symbolic of something. I’m thinking I’m going to contact someone in the Cherokee tribe and find out why it’s placed like it’s placed.
PFC George was a Medal Of Honor recipient. He was killed in action November 1952.
After all that, it was visiting friends here and grabbing coffee, trying to catch the sunset, grabbing dinner.
And she suggested we head to Soco Falls. It’s an impressive little waterfall just off the old route between Cherokee and Maggie Valley. It’s always hard to park there, but we slid right in.
We’ve had a good couple of days up here together. Traffic‘s been like the crowds haven’t been bad. It’s been pretty much perfect.
I started the day with the sun to my back which is odd; usually, I’m headed in to work being blinded by it.
Nope. Today we head off to the mountains for a couple of days. I had to take off the trash and get some things sorted before we left.
We spent the better part of our day travelling to where we’re staying.
The original plan was to hit Graveyard Fields and hike out to the Upper Falls. But it’s hot and we were tired.
The road takes it out of ya.
Here. Showered. Rested. Time to go out and forage for grub.
We ended up going over the mountain and into Tennessee to find supper. We’ve never been in Gatlinburg in the evening. It was actually kind of pleasant. Not a lot of people, still hot though. Did a little window shopping, stopped by the tobacco store and then took the ride back. Just spending time together.
Back in the valley and I wanted to do something I’ve never really had the chance to do with the kids, and that’s to get some night shots. She is supportive of my hobbies like photography and this blog. BUT, when it comes to chilly, she would go with me, but she doesn’t wanna.
Back at Route 19 Inn, there are many nostalgic pieces to go with the theme of the place. I’ll add more pics later, but I saw this tonight.
This came up in my memories on FB today, and I can admit when I’m in the wrong.
I received a free code from my company for the movie, so I didn’t pay for it. But I would have.
The wife loves this movie, quite possibly because one of the heroes is a PTA, and she is a PTA. I catch her rewatching the movie several times a year.
The board game is barely even referenced in the film. The writer could have left that out and made a great sci-fi adventure just the same.
There are several actors that I’ve enjoyed in a lot of other films and shows. Taylor Kitsch, Alexander Skarsgård, Liam Neeson just to name a few.
More importantly, featured in the film, is Col. Gregory D. Gadson. A real American hero.
From his IMDB profile:
Col. Gregory D. Gadson assumed command June 25, 2012, of Fort Belvoir, Va., a 47,000-strong garrison in its 100th year of service. Gadson graduated from West Point in 1989 and holds Masters Degrees in Information Systems and Policy Management from Webster University. He is a graduate of the Command and General Staff College and the Advanced Field Artillery Officers Course and in 2010, he became an Army War College Fellow at the Institute of World Politics in Washington, D.C.
Gadson, was returning from a memorial service in Baghdad for two Soldiers from his brigade on May 7, 2007, when his vehicle was hit by an improvised explosive device. He lost both legs above the knee and suffered a severe injury to his right arm.
He became one of the first Soldiers fitted with a next-generation powered prosthetic knee. It allows amputees to walk with a more natural gait. Rather than taking a medical retirement, Gadson requested to stay on active duty. Gadson returned to active duty to serve almost two years as director of the Army Wounded Warrior program before being selected to command Fort Belvoir.
And then there’s my favorite scene:
From the trivia on the IMDB Battleship entry:
The veterans of the U.S.S. Missouri that Stone Hopper mentions are real life vets of the U.S.S. Missouri.
Alex Hopper’s calling upon the retired veterans to help crew the Missouri is inspired by actual historical events.
When the Iowa class battleships were reactivated in the 1980’s, the Navy had to recall veterans who had served on the ships during World War II and Korea, so they could teach the new crews how to operate the guns, fire control systems and other 1940’s era technology.
It’s a fun movie and a great way to spend a couple of hours.
Wholly unbelievable, big explosions, and the American military kicking ass. Just a good time.
The wife and I have been watching CBS’ Instinct. We both love crime dramas, and this fits the bill.
Former CIA operative is lured back to his old life when the NYPD needs his help to stop a serial killer. Dr. Dylan Reinhart (Alan Cumming) is a gifted author and university professor living a quiet life teaching psychopathic behavior to packed classes of adoring students. But when top NYPD detective Lizzie Needham (Bojana Novakovic) appeals to him to help her catch a serial murderer who is using Dylan’s first book as a tutorial, Dylan is compelled by the case, comes out of retirement and taps into his old skill set. Though Dylan and Lizzie initially clash, when it comes to catching killers, they realize they will make an ideal team if they both trust their instincts. Based on the James Patterson book.
I love everything about the series. The partnership of the leads and the writing are top-notch.
Alan Cummings character being a gay lead in a married relationship, is written into the show and not forced. It’s not there as a push but more of a way to tell the story normally. I’m having a hard time coming up with the words to express this. It’s not something I would usually watch, but the parts are played so well and not forced that the relationship between Dylan and Andy is enjoyable to watch develop.
It also helps that Naveen Andrews is in the cast, and he was one of my absolute favorite LOST castaways. I just like the guys style.
Bojana Novakovic is easy on the eyes and very funny in a sarcastic sort of way. Her pairing with Cummings plays extremely well.
The show puts me in mind of Elementarywhich may be a part of its downfall. Maybe it’s a little too close to the previous show.
Unfortunately, we are wrapping up our watch on this. Not because we’ve binged it, but because it was canceled. The ratings weren’t there for it to continue, and it’s not likely that any of the streaming services will revive it.