First of all, I hope that you are all doing well during this COVID-19 pandemic. It is a difficult time for so many.
I can’t believe it has been 6 months since my last post. I think I got burnt out from our fantastic trip-of-a-lifetime road trip last year. I haven’t even touched my cameras for months. That’s saying a lot!
We arrived back at Mountain Falls Class-A Motorcoach Resort in Lake Toxaway, North Carolina mid October. This concluded our 8.5 month trip. We arrived just in time for the resort’s Octoberfest celebration. This gave us a good opportunity to catch up with many of our friends. We love Mountain Falls for its social activities, the wonderful people we have come to know and love and for the unbelievable mountain views we get from our lot.
After a weekend at Mountain Falls we headed to our brick and mortar home in Atlanta to spend a week with the family. While there, Charlie was able to get some flight time in with his plane. The granddaughters got to fly as well. The youngest one, Harley Jo, absolutely LOVES planes and hot air balloons. I assume she will be Pop’s junior pilot when she gets a little older.
After being in Atlanta for a week we headed to Statesville, NC for a hot air ballooning festival. Some of Charlie’s balloon crew has been crewing with him for over 30 years. They have become our extended family so we had a great time visiting with them during the event.
From Statesville we caught a flight and headed directly to Las Vegas, NV for Fantasy RV Tour training. (https://www.fantasyrvtours.com/). We very much enjoyed our 62 Day Your-Way Alaska Fantasy RV Tour and thought that joining the organization as tailgunners would be a fun experience for us. We are scheduled to be tailgunners for the 15 day polar bear migration later this Fall. That should be a lot of fun.
Two other couples from our Alaska trip also participated in the training. It was fun to reconnect with them.
From Vegas we went straight back to Mountain Falls as we were having guests for the weekend. The moment our guests left I collapsed from exhaustion. I’m guessing you are a little exhausted just reading about everything we did in a matter of 2 weeks. Unfortunately, I think I came down with the flu. I had aches and pains, low fever and absolutely NO energy for almost 2 weeks. Either that or my body said “No More!”
We spent November and December between our residences in Atlanta and Hiawassee, GA. In January I headed up to Michigan for a couple of weeks to be with family. My mother was quite ill and hospitalized. Thankfully, she has been doing well since then, even through this Coronavirus craziness. My daughter, Sarah, traveled with me and we were able to get together with my other daughter, Stephanie. We rarely have the opportunity to get together with our busy schedules.
After my trip to Michigan I attended a week long French Cooking class at the John C Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, NC. The class was taught by chef Dennis Barber who owns and runs The Copper Door restaurant in Hayseville, NC. The Copper Door is a fantastic little restaurant a short distance from our lake house in Hiawassee, GA. I thoroughly enjoyed the cooking class, so much so that I am scheduled to take a Bistro Cooking class at the school in June.
While I was attending the cooking class, Charlie took a wood turning class. The school offers classes in just about anything you can think of: woodworking, glass blowing, knitting, crochet, cooking, singing, etc. (https://www.folkschool.org/). Charlie really enjoyed his class as well.
In February we hit the road again with the motorhome. We decided to make this a more relaxing trip, as opposed to our non-stop activity packed trips we typically take. We spent our first few days in Red Bay, AL getting our annual service completed at Tiffin Motorhomes. Then, after an overnight stop in Birmingham, AL we arrived at our friend’s home in Vernon, FL. They have a beautiful farm with over a hundred acres. Gene and Renee also have a lot up at Mountain Falls, which is how we met them. Again, we just love Mountain Falls. I can’t tell you how many wonderful friends we have made while there.
From Vernon, we headed down to Panama City Beach RV Resort for a few days. We grabbed the one and only available slot that they had. Our walks on the beach were enjoyable, even though the February air was a tad bit chilly. It was as if we had the beach all to ourselves.
From Panama City Beach we headed over to Live Oak, FL where an RVillage Rally was being held. Since we had a few free days on our schedule we decided to check it out. It turned out to be a lot of fun, and the seminars were informative. I think we would even consider doing it again. In the evenings they lit up these really cool metal structures. I can’t recall what they called them, but they were really neat, and they kept us warm!
Our next stop was at the Motorcoach Resort in Port St Lucie, FL. We booked a month long stay there. It was the first time we had stayed anywhere for longer than 2 weeks, and that was only once. Our normal stay is generally less than a week. A large number of Mountain Falls Resort owners were congregating at Port St Lucie for a winter get-together during the first week of our stay. We had a great time re-connecting with friends, especially since we had missed seeing them over the summer, as we had been on our long road trip. Below is a picture of our Mountain Falls group, while celebrating a birthday.
Immediately after disconnecting Mo (our Jeep Wrangler) from the motorhome at Port St Lucie we discovered that it had a major issue. It spent over a week at the Jeep dealership getting repaired. We could not believe how lucky we were to have the issue occur at the one place we were staying at longer than a week. The dealership gave us a loaner vehicle so there was no hardship on us. We greatly enjoyed visiting with friends and checking out the area, although we found that it was always windy there. I mean WINDY!!
We had a nice surprise during our stay. Charlie’s step-daughter, Shauna, came to visit. She stayed with us for a few nights. It was great spending some quality time with her.
We left Port St. Lucie mid March, stopped in Daytona Beach for a night to visit with friends and then made a stop in Port St. Augustine for a few nights. We had a great time there, taking early morning walks along the beach and eating delicious seafood.
By this time though, the coronavirus was starting to become a significant concern so after a couple of days in Port St. Augustine we headed back to Mountain Falls. Since it was still pretty chilly in the mountains of North Carolina we just dropped off the motorhome and then headed to our lake house in Hiawassee, GA. We’ve been hunkered down here ever since. As a matter of fact, we have actually been in this one location longer than we have been in any other location over the past 5 years. The longest we have stayed anywhere in the past 5 years has been 29 nights. We live a crazy life! Not that we’ve just been sitting around enjoying our time at the lake. No, not us. That’s not what we do. Instead, we have been working non-stop on a 3 page to-do list. I’m happy to say that we are almost through the list. That’s how I now have time to catch up on this blog :-).
I’m not sure when I’ll post again. I guess it depends on when we are able to get back out and do stuff. Until then, take care everybody!