Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Old Friends

Last week I ran up to Lexington for a quick visit. It's the first time I've been home since a high school reunion in 2006. Thanks in part to Facebook, I was really looking forward to the trip. I had plans to connect with friends I hadn't seen for a very long time.

My partner stayed home to take care of the dogs. He could have come if he wanted, but spending three days listening to people his parents' age reminisce about the good old days didn't appeal to him. Shows how much he knows.

For road trips longer than about four hours I like to rent a book on CD from Cracker Barrel. Listening to a good book makes the trip go by faster. The day before the trip, I discovered the CD player in my car no longer functioned.

There wasn't enough time to have a new one installed. But the thought of a 400 mile drive without a book motivated me to action. I drove out to Best Buy and bought a $25 boom box with a CD player and a $30 adapter so I could plug it into a cigarette lighter. Classy. It worked, but tended to skip a bit on bumpy roads.

Part of my reluctance in making the trip is the drive. Picking up I-75 in Atlanta traffic can add two or three hours to the driving time. U.S. 441 is a straight shot out of Athens, but traffic around Pigeon Forge can really slow you down. Road construction is always an issue no matter which way you go.

Last week I went up 441, but detoured around Cherokee, Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge via U.S. 74. The drive through the North Carolina mountains was beautiful, and about an hour faster than the more westerly routes I normally take. I made it in seven hours, even with construction. I'll definitely use the same route the next time I go to Lexington.

My "dates" in Lexington were close friends from a long time ago. Some I hadn't seen for 30 years or more. Several are new friends--people I knew long ago but didn't really get to know until recently.

Mostly I came away from the visit glad we connected. I can't wait until we have another chance to hang out again. Yeah, there were exceptions. Sometimes people grow in different directions. Even so, few things help you appreciate how far you've come like a nice visit with old friends.

Thanks, ladies. I had a ball, even if I was maybe, on occasion, just a tiny little bit...

The Crotchety Old Man

1 comment:

Ella said...

You weren't too crotchety...until you mentioned how much mom and I talk! (Just wait until you get me, Mother and my daughters in the same room!!). It was a good visit and we should hang out more often. <3

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