So we arise before dawn the next morning in an effort to get going before our sworn enemies, the sun and the insects, wake up and begin tormenting us in earnest. We are clear of the Krappy Kamp by 7, and have an LOOOONG drive ahead of us, as we must go through Atlanta, a city that used to be Southern but that has now been ruined by Yankees and other assorted ne’er do wells, and on north to Chattanooga before reaching our final destination, Floyd Va, which is near Roanoke, I think.
The one bright spot about a trip through the home of the Braves, though, is a visit to my birthplace, where we will enjoy a fantastic lunch at the Marietta Diner, a chrome masterpiece from a bygone era of 24-hour eateries. When we arrive, the place is packed, but we sit down at the bar and I like the place immediately. The autographed celebrity photos on the walls give testament to the greatness of this Greek-owned (why are they such great restaurateurs?) establishment, and the friendly staff soon have my son eating chicken Riviera, one of the daily specials, which is like chicken marsala only with dried tomatoes and broccoli, and I have a “side” salad, which would be a full plate anywhere else. The atmosphere is fun and loud, the food is good and hearty, and the other patrons are convivial. We get out for $12 including tip. An incredible value.
Now we are faced with a grind of a drive, another 7 hours to our final destination, which is why I am writing this at 9PM instead of enjoying a glass of wine, and you can thank me later for my dedication, thank you very much! But the drive was pleasant enough, especially the Virginia hill country, which is as beautifully bucolic as any in America, with whitewashed Victorians lining the streets of its small towns and large old colonials standing tall on the tops of the green hills rolling down to some of the richest farmland in the world. It is the home of the Founding Fathers, and it is a good one.
Jonathan has found us a little gem in the woods called ”Stonewall Bed and Breakfast” to stay for the evening, which is a charming log cabin in the forest away from everything. Sally the proprietor is a vivacious woman who is also a school superintendent in her spare time, and tells me this is a strange yet harmless community of misfits (read: hare krishnas, cloggers, and eco freaks) who spurn the outside world and just want to grow non GMO plants and wine and such…I like the fact that they don’t fit in because neither do I, but then I’m not sure I’m even right for this strange mix of people. If we have time, I’ll explore the town tomorrow and see what makes it tick. For now I’m exhausted. Good night!