Last we spoke we had backed Serenity down the narrow road from my brother’s house and hooked up Loki in preparation for our trip to the mechanics and follow on drive to Wilmington. Appalachian RV Repair is located in Marion, a few miles east of Black Mountain, and therefor perfectly positioned for our plans. We dropped of the rig and the repair shop owners agreed to our timeline, work request, and approval criteria: they would check the front A/C, let us know the requirements before proceeding with work, and service the rear A/C, all in time for us to pick it up later that week. Good to go.
We then completed the six hour trip in our trusty Geo Tracker to Mom and Tim’s in Wilmington. My tolerance for long drives has dropped quite a lot since we retired, and I frequently blame it on the added stress of driving an RV vs a car. This trip showed me that even in a car I no longer enjoy long drives, and neither does Pad Kee Meow, who addressed her displeasure frequently during the trip.
But we made it, and settled into the guest bedroom for our four day stay. Normally our trips to Wilmington are filled with dining out, farmers markets, thrift shops, and breweries, but with the current pandemic we had to adjust. That meant sliders on Tim’s beloved Green Egg grill, fancy brunches, and home cooked meals for most of our stay, though we did one big take out meal from the wonderful local Greek franchise, Peno’s. (Highly recommended.)
We spent our days and evenings watching movies, teaching each other new card games, and experimenting with a few new drinks as well. They taught us Five Crowns, we taught them Rummy 500, and I made Moscow Mules for the first time (they came out great!)
We were also pleased to meet the newest addition to the Ford household, Callie, a sweet adult girl they recently adopted. She is quite the calm dog, and we had no problems with her and PKM, though the cat still preferred to remain in the expansive up stairs section of the household, an area to which Callie never ventures.
While there we took Rosemarie’s broken ukulele to Mom and Tim’s neighbor, Thomas, who has extensive experience repairing stringed instruments, mainly guitars. Oh, did we not mention the broken uke? While we were setting up camp in Croft State Park outside of Spartanburg, it got partially crushed by the rear slide out. This was a bit heart breaking since it is Rose’ first uke, and she had been making such excellent progress on it using online tutorials these past few months. While in Black Mountain we took it to a luthier who quoted us $400 minimum for repairs (it cost about $220 new.) The sound is still fine, and Thomas was confident he could get it fixed up and respectable looking, so we gratefully left it in his care.
Lastly, while in Wilmington we managed to lock down our schedule through mid August with a series of reservations. As has been our plan for the summer since before we left Florida, we are seeking respite from the heat, and think the mountains a good place to do so. There for, we are headed back to Black Mountain and Asheville for three days, then on to Waynesville (still in NC) for a week, and then we will hit two Tennessee state parks for nearly three weeks. So next up: Black Mountain and Asheville, Part 2.