Hello from the nearly empty bar counter of the Vail House Oyster Bar & Grille on the outskirts of downtown Goldsboro, North Carolina — a city seemingly forgotten by the sands of time and 21st century progress elsewhere.
And so, we enter the whirlwind holiday season once again. Honestly, it feels like I was just in Knoxville, Tennessee, leaning against the bar on the second floor of the Preservation Pub in Market Square on New Year’s Eve when the clock struck midnight.
Hello from Room 6102 at the Sonder motel on the edge of Old Town Scottsdale, Arizona. It’s 80 degrees outside in the late morning, with the dry heat of the Southwest steadily rising like the hot sun above the high desert prairie surrounding this vast, metropolitan area.
Whether you’re going for a short or long hike or on a day or multi-day road trip; planning on taking snacks with you can save money and also make it easier to fuel yourself and your family when you might not be close to your local Ingles store.
Stepping outside the small log cabin, I took a moment to collect my thoughts. Vast farm fields and ancient dirt in the rural countryside outside of Goldsboro, the cool air of an impending fall was felt with a sense of relief in a place where heat and humidity reign supreme.
It’s never easy to go home. And I think it only seems to get harder, perhaps more abstract and blurry, as one gets older — further and farther between from the starting line, literally and figuratively. Case-in-point, I recently returned home to my native North Country.
It’s 9:54 a.m. Tuesday. I’m sitting at the old wooden kitchen table at my parents’ farmhouse in rural Upstate New York, within close range of the Canadian border, just a few farm fields away from the mighty, ancient Lake Champlain.