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Archive for the ‘Pre-departure travels’ Category

Currently, Kristi is meticulously packing away our things into clearly labeled boxes for storage at my parents house.  Thanks to Mom and Dad Lee for the “storage unit” a.k.a. my little brother, Sam’s, old bedroom above the garage.  I can’t be trusted with packing so I’m the gopher; whenever she needs a new box, newspaper for padding, or the Sharpie… I’m all over it.  I will be called upon when it’s time for the transport stage of the move.

Kristi’s handy work!  I love you!

Anyways… back to the original purpose of this post, our weekend trip to Charleston, SC to chill with Chandler, his brothers Bynum and Barrett, and Barrett’s wife, Jess (our awesome biking tour guide).  Chandler finished moving to Charleston the day before we arrived but was still gracious enough to let the old married couple have his room for the weekend while he rode the couch.  This was our 2nd trip to Charleston together.  The first time we did the touristy stuff like Fort Sumter, the Aquarium, and the lamest ghost tour in history.  This time we let the locals show us around…

Friday night we hit up the Music Farm, a local concert venue located in an old train station… very cool.  The occasion was a Yonder Mountain String Band show.  We all assumed that there would be an opener, there wasn’t, and we missed the entire 1st set.  No worries though, the second set was rowdy and I don’t know if I could’ve handled two sets… the venue was paaacked way beyond capacity.  Here is a picture provided by Chandler himself:

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Yonder Mountain at the Music Farm

If you ever visit Charleston, skip the carriage tour and get on a bike and ride.  This is what we did Saturday and was by far the best way to see everything.  We were lucky to have Barrett’s wife, Jess, to take us around the city.  A seafood stop was first on the agenda.  After Chandler’s typical interrogation of the waitress, we order some great seafood and some spicy Bloody Mary’s. I had crab cakes on grits with poached eggs and a hollandaise sauce… whoa.

Kristi, Chandler, me after lunch

After finding a bike shop to get a tube for Chandler’s tire, which he somehow flattened almost immediately after beginning our excursion, we rode down to the battery to see how the “other half” live.  Other stops included the original Charleston jail which is being renovated (currently very creepy, see below) and the Citadel.  The Citadel reminded me very much of Virginia Tech with its central drill field and architecture.  After about four hours on bikes (with clouds looming) we made it back to Chandler and Bynum’s house just as rain was beginning to fall, whew!

Big houses near the Battery

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Old Charleston Jail

Paddy wagon, me, Chandler, and Jess

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Citadel

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Barracks courtyard at the Citadel

The rain kept us in most of Saturday night which was OK with us because we were whipped from the tour of almost all of Charleston.  Thanks to Chandler and Bynum for letting us crash at your place!  Thanks to Jess for the bike tour!  Can’t wait to visit again when we get back!

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Just this past weekend, Kristi and I drove to Blacksburg, VA to visit a bunch of my college friends and eat at a few of Kris and my favorite Bburg restaurants.  On arrival we stopped in at Cabo’s for some fish tacos, a favorite meal of ours when she used to drive up to visit me from Chapel Hill while we were still in grad school.  After meeting up with Dan and Allison we went to another college haunt, The River Mill Map Co.  Kristi discovered a previously unknown talent for darts while I was reminded of the sometimes difficult task of getting a drink at a college bar on a Friday night.

The next day the 4 of us went to the VT vs. Boston College basketball game (Thanks to Al for scoring a couple extra tix).  After a halftime contest where some lucky kid hit a half court shot for $10,000, the Hokies held on for a one point win.  The highlight of the game took place in the stands where Kris and I got a picture with Frank Beamer, VT’s head football coach.

Hard to believe that may be our last time watching Hokie sports for quite a while!  Just when I thought the day couldn’t get any better a dinner/boardgame/upstairs jam session/dance party ensued until early in the morning.  Thanks to Dallison for the place to sleep (and the coffee tables to dance on)!

The weekend ended with Kimmie’s (Kristi’s sister) 18th birthday dinner and some bowling.  It was another fantastic weekend doing fun things with people we love – we are that much more grateful for these times as we rapidly approach our departure for Honduras(3.5 weeks and counting down)!

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Kris and I have been doing a little traveling the last couple weekends to visit some friends.  The weekend before last we left Honey with my folks and drove west on I-40 towards Asheville, NC.  Technically we only drove through Asheville to our final destination, Hot Springs, NC.  There we met up with my friend from high school Russ and his wife, CaroMia.  It was our first time meeting CaroMia and we all had a great time hanging out.  The weekend consisted of music, wine, beers, Russ’s homemade vegetarian food, midnight goat feedings, motion sickness (for Kristi), stand-up comedy on the iPod, the Iron Horse, and hiking.  All good stuff.

Joined by another old friend, Chandler, we hiked at a spot on the Appalachian Trail called Max Patch.  Max Patch is a bald with 360 degree views of the Blue Ridge Mountains near Asheville.  It was a bit of a hazy day but the views were still fantastic.  Snow as deep as a foot, left over from a mini-blizzard a week or so earlier still covered many areas on the hike.  Locals brought their snow riding vehicles (trashcan tops, kayaks, snowboards, etc.) up to the top for some sledding.  (Click on the picture to make it bigger)…

Thanks to RussoMia for a great time!

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