Grandma's Eighty-Eighth

Sunday, November 16, 2008 Road Junkies 0 Comments


Day 6:  Wytheville, VA, to Charlotte, NC.  Through the Virginia highlands down I-77, fog shrouded the highway, reducing visibility to just a few yards. Of course, we refused to let a little rain keep us from letterboxing on the way to Charlotte. The small city of Elkin, NC, had several gems for us, including one near the boat ramp on the Yadkin River.
Yadkin River boat ramp
We arrived in Charlotte about the same time as the rest of the gang-- Ken's sister Marion, her son Ryan, daughter Heather, and granddaughter Emma. While Ryan watched the Georgia-Auburn game, the rest of us enjoyed the beautiful Charlotte weather and squeezed in a bit of letterboxing in Latta Park.

Letterboxing and fall fun in Latta Park
Although it was Emma's first letterboxing adventure, she took to it very quickly and was quite excited when each set of clues led us to the next box.

Heather and Emma got this.
Of course, stamping in was a favorite aspect for Emma as she graciously volunteered to do all the stamping for everyone.

"I can definitely help you with that."
Since we were preparing a birthday dinner for Grandma Saturday evening, a mad dash to Harris Teeter was a must. Not a problem...Ken has developed grocery shopping into a science.

On a shopping mission
After a wonderful meal, Marion presented a beautiful Sacher Torte, a favorite cake from Grandma's childhood days in Vienna, Austria.

Sacher torte!
Sunday morning, the birthday girl herself prepared a delicious brunch for everyone. Then it was time for a few family photos of the entire family, from the youngest to the oldest.

The birthday lady and her offspring
The youngest and the oldest
While Grandma recovered from all the work she did preparing the brunch, the rest of us made our way to McDowell Nature Preserve, a 1100-acre Charlotte park and nature center, where we did a bit of hiking and letterboxing. With Emma's help, we launched a hitchhiker letterbox in honor of Grandma's 88th birthday.

In the end, we all left, headed in different directions for our individual homes. A lot of fun squeezed into 24 hours!

Tomorrow we'll make our way back home, harboring no illusions that we've found the "perfect place" to live in Charlottesville.