Thursday 8/22 – left Cary at 1:00 and took hwy 1 all the way to Camden, SC, then picked up I-20 West. Stopped for the night in Madison, GA at a Quality Inn, which shared the parking lot with a Cracker Barrel. Ate meat loaf then crashed at 9:30 after watching some Forensic Files.
Friday 8/23 – ate a waffle at the motel then got on the road at 8:20. Traffic in south Atlanta was not bad. Went 285 to 85 toward Montgomery. Just out of M’gomery, a big digital sign warned of a major accident on I-65 south, and suggested an alt route. I took the route and lost probably an hour. Finally made it to Lafayette, La after an eternity of driving. There was also sporadic rain the whole way. Found another Quality Inn and a Popeye’s down the road. I was the only white dude at Popeye’s and it was delicious. Watched a little football in the motel room for some reason, then crashed about 9:45.
Saturday 8/24 – got on the road at 7:45 and found a Whataburger somewhere west of Houston around noon. Made it to C & E’s just before 3:00. Got settled then Chris came home and we went to meet E at her model home where there was an open house and bbq. Ate our fill then went to see Where’d You Go, Bernadette, which was quite good. Back at C & E’s we watched a couple of Hot Ones youtube videos.
Sunday 8/25 – ate breakfast with E at Ballito’s. Had a big fat burrito. E went to work and I took a run around the ‘hood. Too effing hot. Set up E’s bluetooth speaker and jammed awhile then napped. C came home with little C and Gabe, then we met E at Pluckers for wings. We had to slake our wings jones from watching those youtube vids. Came home, played keepaway with the boys while listening to tunes, then watched True Grit (Coens’ version) while eating brownies that E made.
Monday 8/26 – got up at 7:00 and did another run. Much cooler this time. Busy day at work despite skeleton crews on both teams. Met E at Schlotzsky’s for lunch then went to target for a small fan and other items. Helped C pick up a used coffee and end tables in the afternoon. Watched a cooking show with E and C. Ate ribs, mashed taters and vegs for dinner. Yumz. Played family trivial pursuit with the boys, then tossed the ball around some more. Crashed about 10 pm.
Tuesday 8/27 – no run in the morning. Woke with a slight headache. Busy with lots to do at work. Picked up Whataburger for lunch and brought to E’s office, then stopped at HEB for dinner supplies. After working some more, took a ride on the SC around the ‘hood. Rode residential streets and a utility road that cut through some greenspace. Got in 11 miles. Showered then got supper going. Ate spaghetti while watching Princess Bride. Listened to Zappa’s Zoot Allures before crashing.
Wednesday 8/28 – worked in the morning until 11:30 then went to south side and met C’s mom and niece for lunch. Ate at Los Pollos Asados, which was super delish. Went back home where I worked some more and had a 1:1 with Jason. Chris made a mexican dish using a bunch of leftovers. Watched Secret Lives of Pets 2 while eating, then had a vigorous round of monkey in the middle with the boys. E and I watched 3 episodes of Shrill, then I went to bed.
Thursday 8/29 – worked till 10:30 then took E to go play disc golf in Selma on a nice little 9-hole course. E did well, remaining no more than 2 strokes away the whole time, despite my putting game being on fiyah. Met C afterward for a sushi lunch. Came back home and worked some more while C & E watched netflix. Watched the remaining episodes of Shrill with E while eating leftovers.
Friday 8/30 – worked awhile then went out for a solo lunch at Grimaldi’s. Good pizza but lacklustre service. Dropped by Spec’s for booze and ice. Worked some more until C & E came home. Watched It Comes at Night with C & E then some Battlebots. Later, met C & E’s friends at Buffalo Wild Wings for fantasy football draft. I ate a caesar salad while watching women’s volleyball. Came home and crashed around 11:00.
Saturday 8/31 – packed up and got on the road to Fort Worth by 9:10. Took 281 and stopped at a DQ in Hamilton for lunch. Continued on 281 thru Stephenville all the way to I-20. Got to Oma’s just after 2:00. Hung out and chatted with Oma, while Laura texted to say her flight would be delayed. We had to rethink plans for seeing P’s band and still get some dinner somewhere. We ate at Milano’s then went to Lola’s for the Cat’s soundcheck. Meanwhile L’s flight is delayed even more. E stayed with P, whose band was also being delayed due to sound difficulties with the house equipment. B and I picked up Laura in smooth fashion then I returned to Lola’s where the Cats had STILL not started. They finally went on at 9:12 and had to play a reduced set. The band was quite frustrated but they sounded good. P, E and I left when the set was over, then we all hit the proverbial hay.
Sunday 9/1 – Did not sleep at all, so got up at 6:45 and woke P & E for an early start. Got started at 7:30 and hit I-20 to hwy 4 through Santo. Picked up 180 to 6 to 380 to 84 into Lubbock. Met Grace and Don at Pecante’s at about 12:45. Busy but got a table and it rocked. Visited sis a bit then hit the road again at 3:00. Took the usual 84/60/285 route on a beautiful day for traveling. Tunes all the way, including a playlist, Abbey Road, and Tejas. We jammed proper. Arrived at M & W’s at 7:03, then had coc au vin with lkb, Jonathan & Benita, and the rest. Delicious. Checked in at the Birney’s and crashed hard.
Monday 9/2 – Got up, ate cereal, then went to the rents’ place to prep for a GBP ride. Took the rr path and rode the east side to thumb. I then made a bad decision by suggesting we cut west to the ridge and ride it back to junction A. Lots of tough climbing and Wendell started getting tired. Laura rode ahead since she needed to get back sooner for her massage. W and I rolled in shortly after but L was still there. Me, P, and E picked up Jonathan and ate at Saigon Cafe, then headed for the dg course. Had a fairly frustrating round, as it was hot and we did lots of disc hunting. P won with 2 under, but we had not taken enough water so we were all parched. Found the nearest gas station on Cerillos, so we got fuel and gatorades all around. Showered at chez Birney then went to Albertsons so P could get pizza ingredients. He made 4 pizzas that were awesome. We pigged out then played a Harry Potter trivia game that mom made. After that, P, E and I played ad hoc Covenant trivia. Good times.
Tuesday 9/3 – Met W, P, and E at Dale Ball trails just after 9am. They hiked while L and I rode the full 9-mile loop. I got a few pr’s over May’s results, and they were on the climbs (???). Good ride, and no dabs after junction 14 again. We all finished at roughly the same time, even B & J. L, B, J, Oma, E, and I had lunch at La Choza. So good. Showered while E hung out at Birney’s. Went to the rents’ later and chilled then ate leftovers and played wise/otherwise. Pete won. It has really been his week. Watched Dogtooth, which E and P had not seen. Back at Chez Birney, we all hung out on the patio enjoying the cool night air, then went bedways.
Wednesday 9/4 – Slept super well. Got up around 7 and had coffee and cereal. B & J got up and we 4 walked around the ‘hood and made our way to Sky Coffee. E and P showed up and we chatted then went to REI and a few railyard galleries. Saw some good art. Ate lunch at Midtown Bistro with everyone but Mom and Wendell. E, L, and I walked around the plaza awhile and got a coke at Plaza Cafe, then picked up Oma and bought groceries for zuppa toscana. Made soup back at the rents’ and everyone enjoyed it. Later, went to Violet Crown theater with E and watched After the Wedding. Not bad. E dropped her phone and cracked the screen.
Thursday 9/5 – got up early and rode Dale Ball again, but in reverse. Felt good and finished by 9:30. Met the crew (including mom) at Clafoutis around 10:45 for brunch. Fantastic of course. Went back to Birney’s to shower and begin cleaning. Cleaned for most of the afternoon then went back to rents’ for supper. Played film trivia and 20 questions before and after eating. Watched Michael Clayton but I kept drifting off. Back to the Birney’s for our last night.
Friday 9/6 – left the Birney’s about 6:20 and visited with P, E, and the rents while drinking coffee and eating pastries from Clafoutis. Enjoyed the cool morning before taking a few group pics and bidding farewell. Got on the road about 7:40. Made good time, stopping in Clovis for lunch at Bill’s Jumbo Burger, where a scene from Hell or High Water was filmed. Took 114 out of Lubbock, then 222 to 380 through Graham, Graford, and W’ford. Got to Oma’s at 6:45, mere minutes after L and O got there from DFW airport. Packed our remaining items and drove to P & K’s. Visited Ellie, ate some salad and chicken, showered, then crashed before 10:00 pm.
Saturday 9/7 – woke early and P cooked eggs and toast fo us. Got on the road at 8 and took 30 to 40 thru Ark and Tenn. Found a Cracker Barrel for lunch and a Tazikis for supper. Stayed at a Holiday Inn in Cookeville, TN. Watched a couple of Family Guy episodes. Got good sleep in a frigid room.
Sunday 9/8 – hit the road a little before 8. Found a Zaxby’s outside Asheville for lunch. Lots of traffic as we got closer to home. Rolled in at 4:20 (dude!) pm. Logged 4,390 miles.