Blue Ridge Apartments

When I Was 69

When I Was 69
Click pic to go to "When I Was 69"

Sunday, September 30, 2018

More BIG Rocks!!!

 One of the Blue Ridge Parkway maps tells us where we skews north over towards the left upper corner of the long parkway, showing where US 221 intersects with the Parkway.
It's also the place where you go to Spruce-Pine from Marion...or you go to Little Switzerland the other way.
The Museum of North Carolina Minerals

We stopped to stretch our legs, and for me to gather more pictures of rocks...

 A gathering of rocks.  I wonder what that should be called as far as "grouping" names.  Murder of Crows, parliament of Owls...maybe a Troll of Rocks?

 I used to take this mineral as a vitimin supplement.

I had to joke about amphibolite, saying it was named by a zoologist who got together with a geologist...amphibians, get it? Groan.

 The familiar stone arch is how the Blue Ridge Parkway crosses over US 221 as it goes left towards Spruce-Pine.

My friends were happy that we were getting on the road again, and one of them knew how to show us how to get to Catawba Falls from Old we drove down that road but didn't hike to the falls.  That's for another trek!

Friday, September 28, 2018

Mica mineral artifacts in museum

2000 year old mica artifacts by Mound Builders. These were mined here in North Carolina and taken to Ohio area where Indigenous Peoples built mounds.


Sorry that the text was cut off on the right, but I bet you can figure out what they were saying.  Strange that the display case covered the description.

But what about gold?

Thursday, September 27, 2018

In the Minerals Museum

Of course I took pictures as I wandered around this small museum.

 I chose to start with the's a loop, so I eventually got to mountains.

 I liked the fake rocks entrance to the exhibits...someone had a good idea to design it this way.

 As a potter, I was intrigued by the exhibit of a Wedgwood vase.

 The kaolin mine in North Carolina was mined out by Wedgwood, and potters get their clay material from other mines now. Incidentally, our manufactured clay is mixed based on percentages of each mineral, but if a mine stops producing and the clay is mixed with different materials from a new source, it often has different results in the firing.  Recently we had trouble with some glazes which used the same forumulas (recipes) but the source of some of the minerals had changed.

Tomorrow I'll share about these mica artifacts.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Altapass and apples

 This apple orchard is privately owned (by a trust) right on the Blue Ridge Parkway

 There was a mob of people, as evidenced by the cars.

 Lots of the people were sitting waiting for a concert to begin.

We, however, had come shopping for apples.  Nope. Nada.  None to be had.  It seems they had a late frost last spring, so no harvest at all this year.  They did provide some other orchard's apples for sale by the peck, but we decided to not do that.

I got some of their apple butter, a bit pricey, but always so delicious on toast.
And then we had some of their lovely apple pie, (a half slice for me) and sat outside looking at the view.  We even heard a train down in the valley, going maybe to Spruce Pine, where there are mines.

 Then the music started, and we looked in at the dancers, many of them wearing clogging shoes.  I would imagine there would be quite a show later...but I knew I had to pace myself to get home before I was exhausted.  Neither of my friends said they could drive my stick shift car.  Now they tell me!

I am a wet blanket but at least I was home by the time I gave out...and pretty darn tired.  Actually we stopped 2 more places before going home.

 My dear friend somehow doesn't like her picture taken! (Removed for posting on Facebook.)

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Onto the parkway

Blue Ridge Parkway, with 2 friends, in search of adventure, and maybe apples.

First we had a nice drive through Old Fort, then the outskirts of Marion, going up US 221, to Linnville Falls turnoff.  And left, opposite the turn is a sweet local restaurant, which I've shared about before.

The Rock House.

It is actually located at the junction of 3 counties, McDowell, Avery and Burke, with signs designating each one.

Sunday dinner is when everyone who knew everyone else came to dinner after church...though a lot of these people may not have been at church, by looking at their attire.  But they would go over to another table and talk to them, then leave their pocketbook sitting on the back of an empty chair where 3 tourists came to sit down after waiting only 10 minutes to get a table.

We had an interesting fare.  And I was very full when I left.

Just a few miles up the winding road is an entrance to the Parkway, and then we headed south again, stopping only for a brief look at the rolling blue mountains.

I'm so glad to have the company of such fun friends.

Next I'll show you the destination of our trip.