Saturday, May 18, 2013
Maggie Valley - Just Hanging Around
We woke to the sound of car tires splashing as they went by on Highway 19. It wasn't raining when we looked out but it hadn't stopped long ago. We dodged the bullet yesterday but it looked like the weatherman was catching up with us this morning. My left knee has been bothering me since I left home. It's only painful when I first bend it or bend it fully so it doesn't slow me down too much. Not sure if it is bursitis or arthritis but it is annoying. To top it off, the battery in my glucose monitor died and I don't have a spare.
A wet morning
A group gathered outside our room trying to decide where to go for breakfast. Butch & Teresa, Willie & Carlene and Sandy & I decided to climb into the truck and go to the Maggie Valley Restaurant where we found a table easily. I had pancakes, eggs and country ham while the others had a variety of things. The food was good and the company was better.
Phillip, Sandy, Butch, Derrick and Teresa
Teresa, Butch, Carlene, Sandy and Willie at Maggie Valley Restaurant
After we ate, I dropped the rest off at the Applecover while Willie and I went in search of gas for the truck and a Powerball ticket. The Shell station we stopped at first cut me off at $75, wouldn't let me run the card a second time and didn't sell lottery tickets. I finished filling at a second station bringing the total cost of fuel to $97. This would have cost me about $140 at home. But they didn't sell lottery tickets either. Finally, we found tickets at the Sunoco at the east end of town, probably where I should have gone in the first place.
Returning to the motel, I did some more blogging. I'm not sure if I mentioned that there is a fine line between reporting on a rally and participating in it. As I plugged away, the streets started to dry up.
Shaft drying his bike
Tbone and Flip discuss riding
Phillip and Wrong Turn catch up
D~Railed (formerly Grateful D) and Kudzu signing Blondy's card
Evil and D~Railed
We had leftovers for lunch. I had what was left of my clubhouse sandwich and mushroom caps. Again, I was working away on the blog in the rocking chair in front of my room when Willie and Wonka and Carlene suggested an ice cream run. Sandy didn't want to go but I did, so we went down to the Maggie Valley style strip mall where they actually had two ice cream shops. The first had just been inundated with a busload of seniors so we went to the second. I had a small dish of no sugar added butter pecan, probably the only restraint I have exercised on the whole trip.
Carlene and Willie picking their poison
Next, we went on to the Leather Shack where I bought my vest and had seen some things that might be good gifts for Blondy's early surprise birthday celebration this evening. For some reason, I thought that she would look good wielding an eight foot whip while the Wonkas got her a small mountain companion.
The Leather Shack - Maggie Valley NC
Back at the motel again, Sandy needed to make a run to a pharmacy for some over the counter products. The nearest appeared to be at the Big K on Russ Avenue so we took the truck for one more ride. She took care of her things and I got glucose monitor batteries at the Radio Shack next door. Then we headed back to the motel in time for supper and the draws.
This is US 19 to Cherokee - should say Not Allowed
There was a spaghetti supper organized tonight by Derrick and company. As we were waiting, I got a few more photos.
Evil and Six Pack deep in conversation
Quickdraw, Bassman and Badger
Mountain Dweller and her offspring plus Phillip
Debbi, Susan and Laura
Red Rover, Daley and EZ
Butch and Mikey
Cheap B, KT and Wrong Turn
Assorted persons getting hungry
Stephanie and Kevin
I could tell supper time was getting close when Sandy vanished. She has a knack for slipping quietly into position so that she is at the head of the food line when it starts to form it up. And there she was, number one in line. I was a little slow on the uptake and was about sixth. Not bad because some days I end up dead last.
Willie Wonka and Carlene, as usual, were serving the food. These folks pitch in whenever help is needed and have been dishing out food to us for years. We had spaghetti, meat balls, garlic bread and brownies. It was fine fare to start off the evening festivities.
The food line starts to form
KT picks up her rally shirts from D~Railed
The serving line
After supper, we moved outside for the raffle drawing portion of the evening. Deputy Heidi from the Haywood County Sheriff's Department, whose DARE program is the beneficiary of the raffle proceeds, was there again with her hot Mustang.
Flip assumes the position
Gale and Lon waiting for the drawing to start
Wrong Turn and Six Pack
Deputy Heidi finishing supper
Jax and Blondy started the drawing with Mikey assisting by handing out the prizes. It soon became apparent that the peanut brittle that Cheap B had brought with him, made by his wife Wanda, was one of the hot items. I had begged for a bag and gotten one earlier, after we hijacked the bag that Grandpa D had won in Williamsburg. It is good stuff. So we won a second bag. We also won another Kawasaki cleaning kit to go with the two we won in Arkansas last fall. Some day, we will have to open one/
Many of the prizes were gift certificates from Kawasaki that had to be mailed in. Jax was careful to point out that they could not ship to Canada. As the only Canucks present this year, we appreciated how many times he said that. But we have our ways. This is a good system because you don't have to pack the items on a bike for the trip home and you have a choice of sizes, where applicable.
Wrong turn won a certificate for a nice Kawasaki backpack and auctioned it off with the money going to DARE. Kudzu won the auction and then, in a moment showing that Karma does exist, won the 50/50 draw. He made a substantial donation to DARE as well and I suggested, with Karma on a roll, he should buy a Powerball ticket.
Mikey, Blondy and Jax drawing
The crowd checking their tickets
Wrong Turn auctioning his backpack
Blondy and Heidi drawing the 50/50
And the winner is....
With the prize phase complete, we moved on to the special part of the evening. Blondy would be celebrating the Big 5 0 next week but, since we would all be home by then, they had decided like there was no time like present to have a party. Blondy is an exceptional lady who takes care of all the VROC birthdays and is a spark plug the Southeast so everyone wanted to show how much we appreciated her. There were a wide variety of gifts and a cake along with many well wishers. (Video here courtesy of Jax)
Kudzu pins a Birthday Girl decoration on Blondy
Blondy opens her gifts and cards
A room full of Blondy fans
After the festivities, the crowd moved out to the driveway in front of the office where the live entertainment was situated. Tonight, Ginny McAfee and Michele Terry kept the place hopping with music that covered a wide spectrum of genres, although their blues renditions stood out. Jax posted a links to a couple of their other numbers so you can see what they do. (Here and here)
As the evening progressed, Toby proved to be the life of the party. After some spirited dancing, he sang Kansas City, accompanied by the ladies. Usually quiet, he was in fine form tonight. (video courtesy of Kudzu)
I spent some time by the fire talking to various people and some more by the room where we could still hear the tunes. I also settled the bill with Derrick so we would be free to leave in the morning.
Michele and Ginny playing
The music was great and the evening was outstanding
Blondy, Susan and cdub
Debbi & Red Rover
Shaft, Wompus and Montene
Toby singing Kansas City
The tail of the conga line
Tbone, Kudzu and Flip avoiding the conga line
My last task of the evening was to post the final set of pictures before turning in about 11:30.
VROC rallies are always great but this was one of the best. Thanks to Jax, Gale, Tina, Derrick and everyone else who made it possible. We will be back again.