September 18, 2006

Meanwhile Down In Alabama

Special thanks
to Chico Bangs for taking care of this week's summation of the most recent Flavor of Love 2 episode. He did a "buckin' and truckin" job.


Long Day's Journey
Jon and I finally made it down to Alabama after a ridiculous travel day on Friday. Why was it ridiculous? First, our delayed flight was cancelled because the plane was pulled out of service. We were booked on a later flight which was then delayed because of bad weather. The delay involved sitting in the gate for an hour and then on the runway for half an hour.

We were supposed to arrive in Atlanta by 2:15. We ended up arriving at after 8. We didn't arrive at our Alabamic destination until after 11.

But we did arrive and that's good. We stayed with Jon's cousin's Tricia and Kendall who were kind enough to wait up past 11 for our arrival. (Thanks again.)

Country Roads
Saturday, we headed out to Jon's Aunt Frances and Uncle Drennan's house which is on a small country road surrounded by quiet grassy fields. Well. Quiet of city noises anyway. There were plenty of sounds from crickets and grasshoppers and whatever other insects and birds might make noise in the country. This was the first time I was meeting this side of Jon's family so I was excited. Every year the family gets together and catches up. So this was a good opportunity to meet everyone. My father-in-law's immediate family was all present and accounted for and they were all really nice.
Family Affair
I felt very welcomed and got to know everybody pretty well.

Getting To Know You
We spent the morning with Aunt Peggy because she joined us for breakfast over at Tricia and Kendall's and then she rode with us in the car to Aunt Frances's house. Then I learned how to make fried okra by working with Aunt F. in the kitchen. The gathering was so relaxed that I had a chance to sit and talk with everyone.

The next day we headed out to Uncle Joe's house who has an amazingly cool coy pond.
Uncle Joe's Coy Pond
Here, I was able to spend some quality time with Uncle Joe and his wife Lanie and some quality time with Jon's other Aunt Peggy. I also got to meet a couple more of Jon's cousin. There were quite a few people in Uncle Joe's house so when we weren't eating we split up and did different activities. Jon and I took Aunt Peggy to Mentone to do some antique shopping for a couple of hours. I saw some great antiques but didn't buy anything because it would have been difficult to transport everything back.

Then in the afternoon a bunch of us went over to DeSoto Falls and then to Little River Canyon Falls. Here is Jon's mom standing by a dangerous overlook at DeSoto Falls.
Dangerous Overlook

And here are cousin Jody, Aunt Peggy and Uncle Joe in the picnic area.
DeSoto Falls

Over at Little River Canyon, we saw some kids jumping into the river next to the falls which is explicitly forbidden.
Jumping From Falls is Permitted

After jumping, Jon's Uncle Joe who is a rescue worker asked the kids what part of Georgia they were from. They were amazed that he knew where they were from and when they expressed that amazement he explained that the kids around here know better than to jump 2 stories into the base of a waterfall.

Back at the house we spent a little time with Jody, Hayden and their baby Jayden. You couldn't ask for a better afternoon for getting to know people.

On The Road Again
So that was Saturday and Sunday. Monday we drove all the way down to the Gulf of Mexico where we are now. We are staying in Gulf Shores. Another cousin, has a condo that he rents out to vacationers that he is kindly letting us use for a couple of days. The drive down was beautiful for the most part, except for the torrential rain about 3/4 of the way down. But we made it in about 6 hours. We stopped in Foley on the way down at Lambert's Cafe for some home style cooking and "throwed rolls". They are famous for their "throwed rolls". Jon and I understood "throwed rolls" to mean that's how they prepared them. But they actually throw rolls at you while seated. The other cool thing they do is serve tons of sides for free - like macaroni and tomato, fried okra, black-eyed peas, and fried pototoes & onions. All good. Mmmmmmmmmmmm.

And now
. . .we're trying to decide what to do. We were awakened by a rigorous thunderstorm which isn't ideal for beach going. But it's mid-morning and the sun is peeking through and we're hopeful for the rest of the day. We'll probably hit the near-by outlet malls while the beach dries up.

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