(That "conversation" was all me, by the way. Mark, being Mark, just smiled and listened and told me he was fine with anything my little heart dreamed up.)
(It sounds charming when I present it that way. He really is easygoing. In a bad mood I would call it indecisive. But I'm in a good mood. So! Easygoing!)
Um, okay, all that to say, we went to Boone.
One night there, one at home, throw in a romantic dinner and a visit with some old friends and some greasy road trip food, and something mumble something something but you can't have it allll, Erin. Shut it fools, yes I can.
So yeah, it was kinda awesome. Mark and I have so much fun when we travel alone together. I could work myself into some kind of existential crisis about whyyyy we are so much better on vacation than we often are in real life, but instead I will just revel in the happiness that when you take away our everyday "real life" we are still so US, like we always have been, not as parents or house-running partners or whatever, just two people who love each other and have fun* hanging out. That still feels good, and I like that.
(We are fine at home too! I mean vacation is better, but not in a bad way, so I am just going to take that for what it is instead of being Classic Erin and finding some way to second-guess it. SHUT UP, ME.)
*We used to joke all the time about people who say they like to have fun, and then use that fact as some kind of compatibility measurement with other people. Which is not a Thing. Everyone likes to have fun! You are not in love with x person because you like to have fun and omg what's this, can it be, no surely not, x person likes to have fun toooo? No, everyone, just no. AND YET. You would be surprised how many people say this in casual conversation. "Well, we both just like to have fun, so..." Anyway, that is a thing we are both annoyed by. Annoyed enough that sometimes we joke that we actually don't like to have fun, we hate fun, and that is what makes us compatible... which might be true if it were true, but it isn't true -- we do like to have fun because everyone likes to have fun THAT IS WHAT FUN MEANS. Okay, end tangent.
This was supposed to be a post sharing pics from Grandfather Mountain, so here we are, having fun (!!!) at Grandfather Mountain.
It was beautiful. I hadn't been there in forever, since I was a kid maybe? And it was cold and clear and wintry without being oppressively wintry, and we did not hate it. (Wintry? Wintery? Whatever.)
After we had hiked around, made too many Climb Ev'ry Mountain jokes (we've been von trapped!), and Mark had brought me inside the nature museum/zoo and showed me some tree that grew a tumor (I almost fell asleep just writing that sentence) (I LOVE HIM SO) and a bear that smelled bad and some otters and a cougar (Mark reeeeeally loves nature, y'all), we made our way back down to civilization, as much as one finds that in the NC mountains.
We stopped on the way home to hang out with his college roommate Justin and their (now three!) children. We stopped and visited my Grandpa, who can talk to Mark like no one else in Mark's life has ever talked to Mark (and I am including myself in that statement), and our visit was worth it all just for the look on Grandpa's face when he opened the door and we were there when he hadn't been expecting us. So awesome.
Oh! And we ate hot dogs from this little place called the Igloo, which sounds like nothing, but Y'ALL. You will never believe me when I tell you world's best hot dogs live in an igloo-shaped takeout diner in Millers Creek, North Carolina BUT THEY DO. (My dad and brother are reading this and groaning. They are wrong. The Igloo is perfection.) So if you ever want the world's best hot dog, GO HERE:
Okay so then we came home and went downtown with a group of friends for a dinner that was 98% garlic, 2% food, and 0% linguine (and a server who looked at us like we were idiots for even mentioning linguine at all) but actually my risotto balls were quite delicious even though Italian food isn't always my favorite.
AND THEN we basked in the silence of our own house, slept rebelliously late (we went to the late church service instead of the early one, because that is our brand of rebellious these days) and then Mark collected our babies and we were glad to see them and we lived happily ever after through the rest of the holiday weekend.