Sunday, 7:35 pm
I'm in Sevierville (near Gatlinburng) for a couple of days for my daughter's national dance competition.
We arrived last night (in the new CRV, no less, very smooth ride, ahhh) and began our adventure this morning with Jorge and Kristin enjoying a morning run while I slept in, which is the first time I've done that in ... days. Ha. Just kidding. I rarely sleep in because I'm more of a morning person than a late night one. So it felt really weird, like a sin or something.
For relaxation pleasure, I brought a plethora of magazines and one novel because I had big plans for the pool, which materialized due to an additional plethora of Tennessee sunshine. I was in non-office heaven.
A couple hours later a restaurant, Kristin, sitting across from me, said, "Mom, how did you get all of those mosquito bites or hives or whatever?"
Looking down, I saw that I appeared to have leprosy.
It took me a second to figure out what was going on. I had used, for the first time, a spray-on sunscreen which turned out not to be a good idea because in spraying my shoulders, I didn't realize that the fine mist I was feeling was actually not fine at all, and indeed left white spots all over me the size of peas. Perhaps there is a river around here in which I can go dip 7 times or something.
You wouldn't think it would be all that noticeable, but during the checkout at a CVS, the cashier asked me, and I quote: "Now how did you get that funky sunburn?"
This afternoon, I sat on the 2nd floor balcony of the hotel trying to write my column for the paper which will be printed July 4, with the ground-level pool to my left and the foothills of the Smokies to my right. It would have been quite picturesque except helicopter tours kept flying overhead which reminded me of giant bumblebees because they were yellow and black and "buzzed" menacingly. So I gave up and came in here.
Right now I'm in the lobby where I'm allowed 15 minutes on this computer, but so far, since no one else is around, I have broken that law already. Apparently, with sleeping in and hogging time on the computer, I am having a wild first day of vacation.
This hotel is supposed to have an antebellum feel. Directly to my left are large portraits of Clark Gable and Vivienne Leigh as Rhett and Scarlett beside an old-timey hutch filled with GWTW memorabilia, plus two glass-encased large sets of Rhett and Scarlett dolls on each side of the hutch, about 24" tall each. Very kitschy.
The two ladies behind the desk are having a LENGTHY and boisterous discussion about whether "swapped" is a real word. They have spelled it about 6 times, used it in different sentences, decided "changed out" sounds classier, and then revisited the whole conundrum again. I just want to yell out, "Yes. Yes it IS a word. It is the past tense of 'swap.' Please use it without further consternation and/or discussion." But then I would just be a rude Yankee, and there's no need for that because they are lovely women. Just really vocabulary-conscious lovely women. Like the bumblebee helicopters, buzzing around me.
The highlight of today, though, was eating at The Islamorada Fish Company restaurant, situated smack dab in the middle of a 130,000 sq. ft. Pro Bass megalo-store complete with stuffed (taxidermied?) wild animals, indoor waterfalls and a 13,00 gallon aquarium. Sounds strange, I know, but when I get home, I'll post pics, and you will see that it is stranger than you thought.
Since we're here with friends whose daughter is also dancing, we are planning a wild game of Farkle tonight, so if I don't post early in the morning, you know the partying just got out of hand here tonight at "Tara."