June 13, 2012:
You can drive twenty minutes in one direction in a place like Los Angeles, and you’ll end up nowhere, and it’s worthless, worse than worthless, annoying. You can drive twenty minutes in one direction in another place, like Los Angeles, and you’ll end up somewhere spectacular.
On this day we found the latter, which is something that is not terribly difficult to do whilst in Asheville, NC. Given of course the variants of your mood, and the ever fluctuating weather, which can tend to be a bit wet in the Summer.
Our chosen direction was North. Five of us in a grandpa mobile that moms uses for the trunk space. It was damn comfortable and far more gas efficient than the Jam Van, which should tell you something.
North will get you through Weaverville and Mars Hill in about twenty minutes. It’s green, many shades of green, all speckling fluffy hills that are swooped upon by chirping birds and framed by seemingly nearby clouds. These are places where still exist structures, businesses and houses alike, that look as they probably did fifty years ago.
Take the Hot Springs exit, turn right, then go about two times twenty minutes straight on ‘til you see a gravel lot with some cars in it.
That’s where we got into the Laurel River. Swam around for a couple of hours, jumped off rocks, tossed the football, saw a big ass spider that made Kings of Leon and I squeal like piggies. It was quality escapism at it’s finest. The sort of stroll through the woods that tends to bring you back to talks of when you were kids. Summer times spent climbing rocks, breaking bones, dodging trouble, that sort.
This was how we spent the better part of day 11. No music this day save for the cassette tapes we found in the ride. I realize that the drive was an hour, but it seemed like just twenty minutes.