Thursday, June 2, 2011

Mini golf, Big consequences

The thought of driving back to Virginia only a day after arriving was not appealing to any of us, so we planned to cut the trip in half by stopping in Tennessee on Sunday. We drove 4 hours to Pigeon Forge, possibly the tackiest place on Earth. It’s filled with tourist traps like trailer park dinner shows and a restaurant/museum inside a replica of the Titanic. Yes, you read that correctly.

We stopped for lunch and did some shopping at what is supposedly the largest Christmas store in the United States. I can’t disagree; the place was terrifyingly large and Santa was available for year-round pictures.

I stuck to the amazing Halloween section.

If they weren’t so expensive I would have bought half of the items on display, but Erinn did gift me with this little S’more Ghost ornament!

After shopping we went for the ultimate competition: mini golf.

It was an intense game, plagued by heat, gnats and lots of trash-talking. I taunted Mike for a good 45 minutes before we started and he sunk a hole-in-one on his first shot. I didn’t let him intimidate me as I played a solid front 9. But like everyone else, I crumbled on the back 9. In the end Mike wound up beating me by 8.

Back into the car for a 2 hour drive to Johnson City, Tennessee for the night. It goes without saying that we were all pretty tired of driving and of one another. On Monday we drove 3 1/2 more hours to Blacksburg, said our goodbyes to my brother and Erinn and started back to Richmond.

What happened next was unbelievable sheer luck. As we went to get on the exit for Interstate 81 we saw it was closed. There were cops everywhere- - Mike said that based on his experience from work, it looked like there was a fatality and the entire road would be shut down. We backtracked a few miles and saw people standing on the interstate. Not a good sign. After some investigating we discovered that traffic was backed up 13+ miles and all the exits were being closed. If we had gotten on the interstate at any other exit we would have been caught in that mess! Fortunately we found an alternate route and happily drove 30 minutes out of the way to avoid the delay. I can only imagine how long we would have sat there!

We arrived home around 4:30 and immediately collapsed. My poor parents had another 2 hours to drive back to their house. Mike and I both had salads and water for dinner and couldn’t stop saying how happy we were to be home. I was in bed at 8:30.

I’m getting too old for this stuff.

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