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Field notes: road trip

Field notes: road trip

Last weekend, I road-tripped with Ben.

We set up a tent the first evening, after driving through South Carolina, and North Carolina, then along the Blue Ridge Parkway for an hour or two. We made a run to town for firewood and provisions, including impulsively purchased fresh peaches, then back at our campsite, we stuffed ourselves with hot dogs and baked beans, and drank scotch and poked the fire as it got dark. Eventually it rained, but only late in the evening, and we lay in the tent, listening to the storm as we fell asleep.

The next day, on our way to meet Ben’s family in Shenandoah, we found a red hunting dog trotting along the road and stopped to find its owner. The dog’s name was Hank, and after walking the highway and eventually finding Hank’s home, the owner offered Ben and me payment in the form of a smoke-out. We said thanks but no thanks. “We’ve still got some driving to do.”

After that, I ate at Waffle House for the first time, and then, smelling of fake butter and conspicuously perfect bacon, we drove to Shenandoah.

We stayed in a beautiful cabin with Ben’s family the rest of the weekend. It was more like a log mansion than a rustic cabin, and we made dinners together, and played games, and drank beer we’d made and cocktails infused with homemade bitters and limoncello.

We hiked and laughed and looked out over stunning hills and valleys. There were chickens at the cabin, and honey bees, and gardens with herbs.

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