July, 2010 break – update


So… who knew that 48 hours in the mountains could fix almost everything in the world? It was just spectacular. I’d not been there in a full calendar year (since the July 2009 trip to Biltmore with Steve), and it was amazing. The weather was dynamic, going from calming showers to dramatic thunderstorms to bright sunshine all in the space of hours each day.

I went out on the lake at least four times, and got to go swimming (something I haven’t enjoyed in about 20 years). And I got to see so much wildlife, right there in my friend’s backyard! From smallest to largest, I saw a walking stick, a bossy humming bird, several funny ducks, a flock RAFTER of about 30 – 40 turkeys playing leap frog (is a group of turkeys a flock?? No, it’s called a RAFTER – thanks, Joe!), a blue heron, and deer all over the place.

What was particular impressive about the deer on the first evening: I got up to take pictures of the sunset, which was hot pink, purple, and peach, and the cicadas were really loud. The scent of rain and tree resin was on the air, and then, under the two apple trees under the balcony, I notice a doe. The moment she stepped into the glade hundreds of fireflies started sparkling all over the yard. It couldn’t have been any better choreographed. Utterly fabulous.

We grilled most of our meals, and it was a very relaxing and cleansing experience. Next time we go, my friend suggested taking my car, so that we could drive with the top down under the trees. If you have never seen the Blue Ridge Mountains, and the forests near Elizabethon, TN around Watauga Lake, you really should make the trip.

Author: Devon Hunter

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  1. Wow. Sounds utterly dream time.

    Those are the precious moments of life, right there.

    Glad you had a wonderful time!

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  2. Good to hear that you had a great time. I’m sure it was absolutely beautiful.

    BTW, the name given to a group of turkeys is a rafter, although they are sometimes incorrectly referred to as a gobble or flock. Just a little trivia for you, LOL.

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  3. Your wonderful description makes it all come alive in a very vivid fashion. What do you mean by saying you saw a “walking stick”? Swimming is such a wonderful thing to do. By any chance did y’all go skinny dipping? 🙂 What a fun thing to do with a handsome, big-dicked guy. I don’t think cicadas are what you heard, since I believe they are what appear only every 17 years or so. (You know, they hatch, make noise to attract a mate, have sex, and then die once the next generation are prepared for….sounds like fun to me….) We used to call that noise you’re speaking of as coming from crickets. One of the best parts of July and August evenings in that part of the country….and one of the best memories of my growing-up without air conditioning! Actually, that’s about the only good memory of those hot, sticky evenings pre-AC. 🙂

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  4. Glad you had a great relaxing weekend, it was gorgeous up here this weekend but no rain for my area. Also, cicadas come out every year Pete, just you may get an invasion every 17 years.

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  5. Glad you had a great time of refreshment. Getting out into the mountains and into a lake for a refreshing swim can do wonders for the soul. Nothing like the early morning mist on a lake and the beauty of a sunrise or sunset to encourage and refresh. And yes, the cicadas do indeed hatch every year where I live and they were very loud this morning. It is true that there are some that hatch only every 17 years, but others do indeed hatch every year. The sound of a cricket and of cicadas are very different sounds ineed.

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  6. Wish you had come by; would love to meet you sometime…especially now that you’re a super star!

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