Planes, trains and automobiles

Reuniting with my big sister never seems to be an easy jaunt. Whether she’s traveling to North Carolina or I’m visiting her in D.C., one of us must journey almost 500 miles to get to the other.

But despite distance and tight budgets, we’re good about making it happen.

The Naturalist's Corner: Rock Hill on the river

My family and I were in the Rock Hill, S.C.-Charlotte area a few weeks back to visit my sister and catch my niece, Haley Barfield (one of the triplets, yeah, as in three, Allison and Jess round out the trifecta) in Shakespeare Carolina’s production of Macbeth. We also got to enjoy a birthday dinner with Matt, the triplets’ older brother.

When India comes to town

By Jerica Rossi • Folkmoot Guide

When asked which country I wanted to be a guide for during the 2017 Folkmoot Festival, it was a no brainer: India.

It was while I was studying and traveling through the states of Gujarat and Kerala that I fell in love with the vibrant colors and aromatic cuisine that India boasts of. It was then that I also had my first taste of being completely intoxicated by the up-tempo drum beat and the tenacity of the synchronized dancers — a kind of high that hits your stomach and demands you to be completely present and in tune with your senses.

Finding your beach

Edisto Beach, South Carolina – I will never forget the pictures. The day after Hurricane Matthew plowed through — and plowed up — Edisto Beach last October, I found a series of photographs someone had taken of the devastation along Palmetto Boulevard, which was no longer visible underneath a deep layer of sand and debris. Beachfront decks had been reduced to heaping mounds of kindling, street signs snapped like match sticks slanting this way and that, the twisted and jagged remains of patio furniture and wind-blasted beach umbrellas resembling giant, metallic insects, various and sundry decorations that had once adorned quaintly-appointed residences, now strewn haphazardly across the landscape like toys in a child’s playroom.

Finding the light in an RV

Since my mom’s passing almost a year ago, my dad and I have become very close. Without her here as our anchor, we’ve relied on one another. I now talk to him about things once reserved for my mom or sister.

The allure of the Cherohala Skyway

What if you discovered that one of America’s most beautiful roads was right in your backyard, and it wasn’t the Blue Ridge Parkway?

Hop, skip and a pour away: Waynesville’s Leap Frog Tours

Stepping out of a large passenger van into the sunshine last Saturday afternoon, a group of around 10 people entered Bhramari Brewing in downtown Asheville. Once seated, an array of craft beer samples were placed in front of the group, with friendly banter swirling around the room while a brewery employee examined and explained each selection. 

Welcome to the Leap Frog Tours.

Pouring passion: Andrews welcomes second brewery

Turning onto 2nd Street from the hectic U.S. 19/74 highway, you find yourself cruising through downtown Andrews. It’s Saturday afternoon, and for most small towns in America, it is no surprise the center of a community is busy. 

But, for Andrews, this is a sight to behold. For a mountain town that’s been eerily quiet for many years, bordering on abandoned, the downtown is now abuzz with folks strolling the sidewalks, cars parked up and down the street. A sense of “well, hey, check this out” crosses the minds of those who used to only stop in this part of Cherokee County to refuel as a halfway point to their final destinations, which seemingly could be in any direction.

Finding daily adventure in a place I love

I call myself an adventurer.

While I do love to travel, adventuring isn’t just about experiencing new places and seeing new things. In my mind, a true adventurer works to find novelty and excitement in the seemingly mundane, in her everyday surroundings.

A world of wonder at a cheap motel

When you’re a kid, there’s something magical about hotel pools. 

I’ve written before about growing up in a dance studio. Some of my fondest memories of dance competitions and conventions are the hours spent splashing and laughing in the hotel pool after all the formal events were over.

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