Wednesday, August 5, 2015

All About that View

We explored today! We actually started our fun with a picnic at Explore Park in Roanoke.

Trailhead Selfies - should they be a tradition? Discuss.

That Forestry Education Trail was going to be our first hike here, but just a few minutes into it I realized I really didn't have the spoons for it, especially with today being the hottest of the week (still cooler than Murfreesboro, but not by much). My amazingly supportive beloved helped me get back to the car safely, made sure I had water, and turned on the AC as quickly as possible. Then we adjusted our plans to come back and check this out more later, and to take a nice relaxing drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway today instead.

As you can see, the views totally sucked up there.
We stopped at several of the scenic overlooks, sometimes just to pause and take in the view from the car, sometimes to get out and take pictures, stretch our legs, or walk a couple minutes of the Appalachian Trail when we ran across it once. :)  We've now hit parts of it in Georgia, Tennessee, and Virginia.

And among the beautiful mountain views...

              ... there were also beautiful smaller and closer views...

There's a couple mountains here called the Peaks of Otter (more about them later after we visit them for real) but we drove past them today, and checked out the welcome center and hiking info. The hikes to the top of either one are "strenuous" and therefore not something I'm prepared for, but one has a shuttle bus that goes almost to the top. The area also has a winery and fruit farm, a lodge, a restaurant (where the head chef came to speak to me personally when I asked about gluten free options for future reference), and of course, gorgeous views.

On the way back, we also stopped at Thunder Ridge parking area, which is a small lot, maybe a dozen cars long. Each end of the lot is one end of a 10 minute loop. Why stop for a 10 minute loop, you ask?

Here's why.
Yes, this was the perfect time to break out the panorama mode. :)

Sitting on the wall at the edge of the observation platform

Heather did a lot of smiling at the view. (Not that I didn't.)
 I think one of the most interesting things is that even today, on the way back to our temporary home (which I will post more about in the next few days, but it's pretty awesome) we were still saying to each other "we're really doing this. We're on the road, doing our thing, seeing new places. It's really happening." Like that moment a week or a month or so after you get married when you make a reference to your spouse or something, and suddenly it hits you, "holy crap, I'm really married." Why does it take our brains so long to adjust to these kinds of changes? (Hell for that matter, we're still trying to wrap our brains fully around Heather's book release and that was in March.)

Okay, here's a sneak peak of the airbnb - the view from the back deck where I've spent many hours already just listening to the sounds of nature and a quiet country road.

I think we'll be making use of this grill sometime during the month.
It was a fairly low-key kind of day, but still an excursion and lots of fun. I will say I'm learning things with every trip we've taken recently and every activity I want to do - and how to adjust to them with my health limitations. I have a list of health issues that all cause low energy and chronic problems, but I've decided they won't take over my life and keep me from the things I want to do. Hence, this walkabout. So far, so good.


  1. What gorgeous views! Thank you for sharing your journey with us. I love following along.

    1. Yay! I'm glad to see people enjoy the posts. Miss you!