road trips, weddings, and adventures

This weekend some dear friends are getting married. A few weeks ago, before they began the pre-wedding travels, we had a grand Mario Bros themed party at a local pub for them. That’s them on the left. The two of us on the right are excited be in their wedding, supporting them as they begin a life together.

So… in a couple of hours, Joel and I begin our journey to Charles City, Virginia where we will celebrate in grand (not Mario-themed) fashion with them this weekend. It will be simply elegant, totally them, and wonderfully perfect.

Because such a road trip should include other adventures, we are then headed to the beach to hike six miles and spend two nights camping next to the ocean. I grew up camping on beaches that were not filled with other people, so this touches my soul in a happy place. I promise to share pictures upon our return.

And no, I have not forgotten about the move to Rwanda. The purchase of the last week was the water filter I will use in my home so that I do not have to buy bottled water or boil it daily (annoying, time consuming, and does not equate to good tasting water). Such a simple, not pretty thing, but oh so thrilling. I will have access to safe water that requires little effort.

I hope you have great plans this weekend.

christmas adventure

The road trip with my brother, MM, took us to Savannah, Charleston, and a few places in between. We stayed at a bed and breakfast on Tybee Island, just south of Savannah, and in a cabin in Givhan’s Ferry State Park, just north of Charleston. The sibling get-together was completed when other brother and his lovely wife (CC & EC) joined us on Christmas day for the Charleston portion of the trip. Our time included much walking of beautiful streets and squares, taking in American history, sitting in coffee shops, frequenting used book stores, sitting by the fire, eating home cooked meals, trying local fare at cafes, and playing many games of spades. I loved the patterns and lines I found everywhere I looked, and the siblings were patient with me as I enjoyed capturing some of it through the lens of my camera. Here is a taste of what we saw in these (basically unedited) photos.

Staircases to the row of shops, bars, and restaurants by the riverfront in Savannah. The upper level has some fun antique stores worth browsing.

These wall of tombstones was on the outer edge of a large cemetery in Savannah. If I remember correctly, the last person to be buried here was laid to rest around 200 years ago. That is a long time ago for this country. However, it seems kind of sad that these tombstones have left their owners in unmarked graves.

Black and white homes. Walking the streets of Savannah.

Door to Fort Pulaski. The fort is a National Monument and is definitely worth visiting. Even learned a bit about the origins of baseball on the tour–back then a home run was a bad thing as it meant search for the ball outside of the fort’s walls.

This door was a lower door to a large house in Charleston; a large porch sat on top of this door.

Doors and shutters came of all shapes, sizes and shades in Charleston. Most did not have screen doors, and this was the only screen door not completed closed.

Some homes in Charleston had courtyards or yards. Although simple, this space was made more appealing by the beautiful gate baring me from entering.

Plants flowed over the walls, gates, and fences of many Charleston homes.

road trip: back to the bend

The day after I returned home, I had a lovely brunch with two of my girls: RC and SR. It was delightful! For those of you who have followed this blog for a while and know the third ‘girl’, LL, she was on her way back from the Kentucky Derby. Fun times for all!

road trip stop six: cleveland, ohio

ok…I’ve been back for a while, so these posts are a bit delayed….

Here I chilled with brother CC and sister-in-law EC. Highlights include the farmer’s market, great food (think salmon, crepes, fresh raspberries), spending a day replacing the speakers and stereo in George (aka ‘ my faithful car’), and riding on CC’s motorcycle.
For the record, in this picture I am in an empty parking lot in first gear…I am much more practiced at being a passenger!

road trip stop five: atlanta, georgia

Spent a couple days chilling with brother MC in Atlanta. In this picture he is finding out that he has lost a bet…good thing we just bet a beer.
Meet MC’s girlfriend LL. She has been the inspiration of MC’s starting to cook. MC wowed me with two outstanding breakfasts and three fantastic dinners. May they continue to cook to create many a good meal together!

raod trip stop four: athens, georgia

When KJ and I lived together, Saturday morning tradition was waffles or french toast, fresh fruit, and coffee or tea. 9 times out 10 KJ would wake me up by loudly starting to pull pans out of cupboards or by the smell of coffee. We resurrected the tradition… I think we will always be breakfast buddies. 
We went wedding dress shopping, but just in case she chooses one of the dresses tried on for her July wedding, I figured I should keep the photos of KJ being beautiful in white safe on my computer. Instead, us after lunch.

road trip stop three: nashville, tennesse

Me & JB in front of a Vanderbilt University building. As you can see below, it was a rather pretty campus.
For some reason I was not shutter happy this trip and so things that were done but not captured on film, or really, sd memory card…going downtown to Broadway for live music and drinks, friends I stayed with and their lively and imaginative four year old daughter, Lebanese and Ethiopian food.

road trip stop one: upland, indiana

The road trip has been great thus far, which has left little time for blogging or writing about it. Instead of holding out on photos for a time when I might or might not get around to tossing in details, here are a few images from the road of the people I have seen.

Antiquing with JD. (Husband CD opted out of this excursion to do the responsible thing and write a lecture.) 
Chilling with SM & CM. For those of you who know SM, she is doing great and sends her greetings.

road trip

The last time I took a real road trip I had recently finished up my undergrad and did a last spring break trip with friends to South Carolina. Fiver years and two degrees later I find myself floating again and am ready to head south in the spring. This time there is no guarantee of getting to use my tent and sleeping bag, my travel companion will be books on tape and local radio stations, and there will be no driving through the night. However, there is a guarantee of chai, coffee, adult beverages of choice, smiles, and laughter shared with friends with whom I have history. I will also discover a new city, drive new roads, take in some spring colors, and work in eclectic local coffee shops. So….for the next three weeks, updates from the road.