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Monday, April 01, 2013

Home Sweet Temporary Home in Black Mountain, North Carolina

Home for 2 weeks, the Rondette Cabin
Home Sweet Home, for now at least, in Black Mountain North Carolina.  Ila and I arrived late yesterday afternoon, and busied ourselves moving in and taking in our surroundings.

The cabin we are in is a moss covered old beaut. It's suspended over the sloping ground by posts and it has a porch that wraps around the front half of the cabin. It has a bedroom for each of us, and between the two is a full 'Jack n' Jill' bathroom.

I was a bit shell shocked by the cabin at first, because in its photos on line it looked pristine & new, but those photos probably date back to the 1960s - that's just my guess. The curtains in room I picked were a wreck so I just pulled them down - the better to view wildlife I guess. The cabin sits on slope, across from another cabin, and it is backed by a mountain full of trees, still leafless & in winter mode. Still - it is rather enchanting to find yourself in a cabin in unfamiliar eastern woods.

Today we were ready to take in the local color. We found out we our first full day at the YMCA is a day off. Before we headed out, we met with the YMCA Conference Center's Director Owen Lovejoy. He seems quite a nice guy and we felt quite welcomed by him. He gave us our uniform blue polo shirts and an idea of what we'll be doing during our 2 weeks - 30 hrs/week - we are volunteering at the Center.

Oh yeah - why are we doing this? Ila, who like me is retired, wants to move from Sacramento. She's puzzling over possibly relocating to Asheville, NC. She thought volunteering at the Y here would give her time to look over the region. She asked if I'd come along, and what the heck, I said yes. I am interested in Eastern birds though, not in living in North Carolina. There! At last you're caught up. 

A bit of the Blue Ridge Assembly YMCA buildings

View of teeny bit of Asheville
Where was I? Right! Today Ila & I drove on into on into the 'little town of Asheville'; to see what we could see. We were told - each on our own - about Asheville from various friends who live there. Somehow, independently of each other, both of us formed the same opinion, thinking of Asheville as a small, quaint college town. We were both shocked to find Asheville is neither tiny, nor quaint and is in fact, a large city - emphasis on city.  Mind, it is a beautiful city, but we though it would be maybe ten blocks of quaint, not 34 square miles of modern urban habitat. I mean wow.

Now I've explained why we were shocked, I'll explain why we were elated; what a pretty city!

Fantastic bronze sculptures

I was so tickled with these bronze statues of swine & turkeys I must have taken a dozen photos of each.

The pigs face where the Market was 'back in the day'. I imagine the turkey tom & hen are also obediently headed for the market place.


The bronze statues are part of Asheville's 'Urban Trail' which you can read all about if you wish.

The statues are in a little plaza with a sky scraping obelisk, dedicated to a Civil War era  North Carolinian governor. The pigs and turkeys march along at the base of the white stone tower.

The swine & turkeys are just out of sight, at the obelisk base.
Directly across the street from the obelisk is the Art Museum
I have no idea why 'grapes' hanging by the Art Museum are basketballs
Little bronze girl drinking from horse head fountain
We also visited an area of Asheville that I think was more what we expected the entire town to look like. There we hit a pretty little knitting shop, located in one of the beautiful old homes that were revamped into quaint little retail stores. We went there so Ila could get a new project for down time at the cabin.

Nice view of the pretty houses where the yarn store is.
For myself, I got carried away and bought a couple of knitting projects that hopefully I will complete prior to the turn of the next century. Stay tuned for updates on my scarf, hat and fingerless gloves projects - don't hold your breath.

We spent a fair amount of time driving around Asheville, checking out the sights of this large southern city. Then we headed back to 'the cabin' where I hung a little bird feeder. I bought the feeder with high hopes of attracting and seeing what bird life there is around the cabin. Wish me luck on that one!

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