(for trip info, check out Over the River)
This weekend is my Grandma Rush's 70th birthday...and because I'm working this weekend, I decided to go up on Monday to surprise her for lunch at her favorite restaurant, Abuelos. Thanks to my mom's youngest sister, Robin, I was able to pull off the surprise visit with Grandma not suspecting a thing (which, if you know my Grandma Rush, that's almost mission impossible!).
The drive up wasn't too eventful...but I will never tire of driving through the Great Smokey Mountains! This time around, there was ice and snow in the trees (just a little bit) on the way up-thankfully none on the roads! Being a bumper sticker collector and avid license plate watcher, I keep an eye out for any interesting stickers/plates on other vehicles. And I was not disappointed this trip! My favorite by far was "Somewhere in Kenya a village is missing its idiot" sticker that I passed near the Junction for Hwy 11 and 25. I also noticed an unusually numerous amount of Pittsburgh Steelers paraphernalia...and not just from PA!
Another quirky habit I have developed during my travels is finding strange road signs. There are your normal ones: Stop, Yield, Do Not Pass, Pass With Care, RR Crossing, Ped X-ing, etc. Then there are those random ones that a second after you pass it, you think "HUH?!" Such as: Blind Intersection, Don't Even Think of Parking Here, Caution Roadway Ends, etc. The sign I found on this trip and was able to capture was actually the 3rd in a series of 3 signs found as you drive into downtown Knoxville. The first, "Begin Blasting Zone" was quickly followed by the second, "Please Turn Off Pagers and Cell Phones." The third was about a half mile later (after I had prepared myself to be violently shaken and was beginning to process the second sign) and read, "End Blasting Zone." Say what?!
Needless to say, I was NOT blasted anywhere. And having had a successful surprise trip, I am now home...fighting a losing battle with allergy/cold junk (as long as I win the war in the end, I shall attempt to bravely take the sound beating this stuff is giving my lungs and perhaps, if I am fortunate, my voice shall return?) and planning my trip for next weekend!