Friday, June 1, 2007

road trip, part I

back in philly after a rejuvenating, relaxing road trip.
i have lots of stories and a few pictures to share, so i thought i'd give you a report back over the next few days and posts.

my first few stories revolve around signs.

on our way to visit friends in lynchburg, virginia (what a horrible name for a town!) we passed many businesses with signs such as "our prayers are with the falwell family" and "god bless jerry falwell." for those of you who are not familiar with mr. falwell, he is the founder of the moral majority and was a major force on the reactionary right who founded liberty university, near lynchburg. he was a sexist, racist, homophobic bigot. these signs reminded me that i was no longer at home. my circles tended to react to falwell's death with more of this kind of sentiment than pure, unadulterated sympathy.

after leaving lynchburg, VA we had a long drive to hilton head, SC. i was awed and grateful for the many beautiful patches of wildflowers growing in the median of the highway. while craning my neck to get a better look, i caught a sign that let me know that i could thank NCDOT's Wildflower Program for these wonderful bursts of color in the middle of the highway. i didn't get pictures of the more beautiful patches because i was just smiling and laughing and enjoying them, and then they were gone. but here's one i did get. it amazes me how much simple joy flowers can bring.

we finished our trip with a visit to f.pea and grady in raleigh, NC. f.pea had suggested that we meet up at neomonde, a bakery/cafe with mediterranean food. mike and i couldn't find the place, so stopped at a wafflehouse to ask directions. four employees and one customer politely informed us that they had never even HEARD of this restaurant. we called f.pea. it turns out that the restaurant was RIGHT BEHIND wafflehouse, only hidden by some trees and a railroad track. isn't it funny how we all have our routine, our favorite places to gather and eat, and how easy it is to be ignorant of those places and people outside our usual circles? this incident reminded me that there are amazing surprises right under my nose if i can open my eyes.

2 comments:

kg said...

I've heard from my highway engineer dad that lady bird johnson inspired the flowers in the middle of highways.. gotta go google to find out if its true

ms. pea said...

i'm so glad that our state highway department brought you such joy! it was great to see you both - thanks for stopping in on us!