A Top Down Vacation

We decided to visit my wife’s brother,

to surprise him for his 65th birthday.

Since he lives in Hertford, North Carolina

and our cars have high miles on them,

we thought it best to rent a car from Avis.

When we came to pick up the rental car,

they said the Kia sedan needed washing.

Instead, we would have to settle for a smaller car.

It was a new red Mustang convertible

that was available for the same price.

I replied, “I guess that will be alright.”

Once we drove off of the rental lot,

my wife and I burst out laughing

and quickly put down the top.

We got stuck in traffic in the DC outer belt.

Drivers didn’t use their turn signals at all

as they entered the road and crossed three lanes.

In Virginia, we noted an unusual hardware sign

it said get fresh veggies and your pool water tested here.

We saw another one stop shopping store.

They sell guitars and guns.

You could get either one that strikes your chord.

Or, pick up both some amps and ammo.

Virginia is for lovers and fresh peanuts.

They even sell those terrible boiled ones.

A sign declared North Carolina is the birthplace of Pepsi-Cola.

Oddly enough, every diner served fountain Coke not Pepsi.

You can get ice tea as long as it’s sweetened

with enough sugar in it to bake a cake.

Tobacco is the North Carolina state vegetable.

There are tons of different kinds of churches everywhere.

I was puzzled by a sign declaring that Catholic Church masses

would be held at the nearby First Methodist church.

I have no idea if the pope knows about this.

In the south families are very tight.

It’s easy to visit your great-grandparents,

grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles.

That’s because they reside 100 ft from your house

nested all together in the family cemetery.

In the south no one asks if you have crazy people in your family.

They just ask which side of the family they are on.

We noted that Southerners back into parking spots.

They seem to be very directionally challenged

as they back up several times before completing their task

We traveled many miles on remote back roads,

getting lost as there was no cell phone connections

for our Mustang’s built in GPS to pick up.

Like up north we saw hundreds of Dollar Stores.

I noted that none were called, “Confederate Dollar Stores.”

Actually, we had to wait until Ohio

before we saw a Confederate flag.

I never saw a Trump sign or bumper sticker,

until we arrived back in Pennsylvania.

That doesn’t mean that Southern states

aren’t struggling with their history of slavery.

Fredericksburg, Virginia is facing such an issue.

The city council is considering removing

a former sandstone slave auction block.

It’s a heavy fixed structure that historic preservationists

say could be damaged if it were moved elsewhere.

Some residents want it removed as it’s a painful reminder

of  the ugly history of the town and the South.

Other citizens want it to remain as a tangible reminder

for the public to be able to reflect

on the city’s painful history.

I am glad to see some in the South

wrestling with the sins of the past,

in an effort to make a better future.

All in all a great summer trip.

Returning that convertible was the

low point of the whole vacation.

The Gun Club:  “Mother Earth” 

“Anger Blues” 

“With age, comes wisdom. With travel, comes understanding.” – Sandra Lake 


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3 responses to “A Top Down Vacation

  1. Jim Jordan

    Jim, glad you and the family had a nice trip. Sure is good to get away from time to time and Virginia is a very beautiful state. jj

  2. elecpencil

    Thanks JJ. I love getting away but I always look forward to getting home. I tend to love my own bed and this area. In Solidarity Jim

  3. Nancie Shillington

    a red convertable–now THAT”S a surprise!   WE had very similar experiences in our trip to C’s nephew’s wedding in Frederick, Md.  Of course we might be a tad prejudiced about Pa.

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