I told people we had one day to visit with our friends Karen and Al. They traveled with John on his ferrying missions between visits of grandsons Nathaniel and David. They arrived in the wee hours, relaxed the next day, and headed back to New York mid-afternoon of the third day. What a whirlwind! Our one full day began at the breakfast table.
They had angel biscuits the last time they visited, but this time the bread was made with White Lily flour. I doubt I’ve ever made lighter or fluffier biscuits. Perhaps the real test would have been comparing regular biscuits the day before with the yeast biscuits this day.
Knowing Karen knits all the time, I pushed a trip to the nearest yarn shop. When other alternatives were presented, her eyes lit up at the mention of a thrift shop. I was eager to share the one Nathaniel and I went to. We left John at his computer and Al smoking a cigar on the porch. On the way to town, Karen mentioned that she would look for a sewing machine. It sounded impossible, but that was one thing she would like to have for repairing things at home. We poked through all the displays of dishes, glasses, candle holders, small appliances, plumbing supplies, cookbooks, speakers, bake ware, and jewelry. I learned my lesson the last time, to not argue with myself about buying something that caught my eye. I loved two cordial glasses with angels on them and didn’t buy them. The next day Nathaniel went back with me to get them – a steal at $1 apiece! This time I picked up a cut glass cruet, a small mug with red hearts on it, and a 100-piece jigsaw for Logan.
Karen asked the wonderful volunteer behind the counter if they might possibly have a sewing machine.
“Oh, yes!” she said. “One came in yesterday, and its a really good one. Come with me.”
The woman picked up something I thought looked like a toaster. She put the tiny Elna sewing machine on the counter with a flourish, saying she knew it ran. Karen’s mind worked like lightning. It cost less than anything brand new she had seen on sale, and she would not drive down from New York if she didn’t buy it and changed her mind. The volunteer was shocked to be asked to pose with Karen in the shop. She said, “That’s a first!”
We came back home crowing about our finds. The machine worked, and Karen easily found the instruction manual on line.
Has anyone else had trouble finding good decaf coffee? Ingles discontinued Karen’s and my favorite chocolate-raspberry flavor. The fellows went with us to Smoky Mountain Coffee Roasters. I knew neighbor Connie bought decaf there, so we went with high hopes of finding something for them to take home. There were only two choices, and Karen took the Organic Peruvian Blend. My fingers are crossed that she will enjoy it.
Karen loves barbecue as much as I do, and the men were amenable to lunch at Haywood Smoke House. The restaurant has a rustic décor, although décor is too fancy a word to use in this context. When Al’s wine came in a jelly jar, I asked the men to pose while making a toast. A jelly jar, of all things!!! The food was solidly good, as always.
John asked if we wanted to go anywhere else, and Karen seconded my suggestion that we go up on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The rain clouds were low, but you never know if something beautiful will present itself. I hadn’t been up there since the beginning of December. We jumped out and took a photo of a distant waterfall. We could even hear its roar! Unfortunately, that was the ONLY view we had. The rest of that section was fog-bound. Every time something was not to our liking, we kept telling them they had to come back.
The last half day of their visit was low-key. Rain kept us from walking, so we talked instead. We ate chocolate chip-pecan coffeecake made with Angel biscuit dough for breakfast. Karen asked about the air fryer on the counter. When I found out she and Al would eat okra, I threw some frozen breaded okra in it to go with our left-overs for lunch. It was overcooked, but we ate it all, anyway. The acorn squash filled with apple was our vegetable/fruit/dessert. They needed to eat lightly, since they were soon going to have BBQ at the Due South restaurant in Christiansburg, VA.
Pushing back his chair, John said, “We’d better get going.”
“I don’t like those words,” I said.
Al suggested, “Come with us on that long ride.” He bounced up and down in his chair as if riding on a bus.
I applied the same response, “I don’t like those words.”
I hated to see them go, but we had a joyful visit, creating lots of lovely memories.