Friday, April 25, 2008

the top 10 things i learned on vacation

(ok, i lied, but "the top 14 things i learned on vacation" is a really crummy title!)

14. dogwood trees are seriously under-appreciated in the flowering tree community

finally the dogwood gets some respect

13. it's unusual…but not impossible…to encounter snow flurries at biltmore in april

later that same week...the biltmore gardens seemed fairly flurry-proof

12. the best barbeque in asheville…perhaps in all of north carolina…can be found at 12 bones on riverside drive (many thanks to the lady across from me on the flight down for this info!)

this is NOT genuine 12 bones bbq...this is a stunt double from duncan's in chimney rock...whilst at 12 bones lauren was too busy devouring pig products to consider photography until it was waaaaaay too late to take pictures!

11. the blue ridge parkway is neither blue nor ridgey…but the mountains which surround it are both!

but STILL no one can essplain to me why we drive on parkways and park on driveways!

10. gargoyles serve the useful function of draining water away from the structure upon which they are found; whimsical stone carvings present solely for appearance should technically be referred to as “grotesques”

genuine gargoyles, gargoyling genuinely (accept no substitutes!)

9. the entirely utilitarian and otherwise completely un-glamorous bathrooms at chimney rock park are painted with beautiful murals

talk about "art for art's sake"!

8. biltmore house was incredibly technologically advanced for its day. it was fully equipped with electric lighting, a sophisticated refrigeration system, internal telephones, and an automated laundry room when it was built…in 1895!!!

state of the art high definition techno-tulips

7. the folks at asheville regional airport have an excellent sense of humor!

luckily we had a very nice view of *THE* runway!

6. making a tall sticky-up bit of rock into a delightful cartoon character will definitely result in an eye-catching and memorable advertisement for your business…but possibly also an obscenity charge…

where the heck is peewee herman when we need him??!

5. when the folks at biltmore say “festival of flowers” they are NOT KIDDING!

"all right lads! stand up straight! and look FESTIVE!!!"

4. really immature people who remember adam west and burt ward camply fighting gotham city’s crime in 1968 giggle inanely every single time they see this sign (…and i am firmly in their number…)

"damn! that robin never could keep a secret!!!"

3. asheville leads north carolina…and perhaps the world…in the number and opulence of their self-service dog washing facilities. (who knew??!)

am i the only one with a mental picture of shaun the sheep in "wallace's knit-o-matic" right now??

2. if you can assay very, very high structures with only vague unease, look all around you with pleasure whist up there, and comeback down again without concern, you are NOT acrophobic…merely sensibly cautious. similarly, if you, “think you might be” acrophobic, you are not. you’d KNOW. trust me!

this photo was taken by the entirely un-acrophobic jeff (though i actually DID make it up onto chimney a brief and nervous sort of way...)

1. if you go on vacation with the person you love most in the world, it’s extremely difficult NOT to have a wonderful time!

...and i'm not lyin'... (sorry, that truly was diabolical...even for ME!)

just in case you have not seen quite enough vacation snapshots (and surely there's a twelve-step for that!) you are welcome to check out my webshots gallery where there are many, MANY more photos of biltmore, asheville, chimney rock, lake lure, and more!


  1. This blog post left me rolling on the floor. Beautiful photos, but the play-by-play is priceless! LOVE IT! xo

  2. The Bat Cave signage always makes me giggle too. Now I'll think of you when I see them and how Robin can't keep a secret. I love your sense of humor.

    The phallic rock is new to me. Yikes! It is quite an image.

    Again, I am so glad you are back! I enjoy your posts so much.

  3. Lauren, your pictures are gorgeous, your humor is spot on as usual, and OMG!!! the picture of chimney top is giving me a heart attack just looking at it...i CAN NOT!!! imagine actually being on it, YIKES!!!

  4. Lauren, I am one of those "get-a-life" stalkers who has time to look at all your photos in your webshots gallery. Your top 10/14 vacation narrative is have a gift for humorous writing. Felt like I was along on the journey. Glad you had such a great time.

  5. Was that the penis/rock you walked to the top of? B/c that really is quite a little odd!

    Fabulous post and am loving that dogwood.

  6. Fahhhbulous vacation tour my darling ... looks like a marvelous time ... so glad you and your dear husband had a good time.

  7. No wait .... I don't know who that person is with Lovely Husband Jeff in the last shot, but it can't be his wife as I'm sure she's a blond!

    But whoever she is, she's a stunner and she takes GORGEOUS pictures! Plus, she's very VERY brave for climbing up that suggestive rock .... although obviously not quite as brave as LHJ, but we can let her off that.

    Thanks for sharing your holiday snaps with us, it makes me yearn for blue skies, mountains and of course, barbies!


    ps. 1968 .... a bloody good year ;)

  8. Looks like you had a fantastic time, awesome photos, love the airport sign one and omg that walk....


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