Friday, June 19, 2009

Tsali - November 1999

In June of 1996, one of my college buddies and I moved from Tampa to Longmont Colorado...just to the northeast of Boulder. I've talked about that experience, and working at the Sports Garage and all that, to death here on the ol' bloggo. Old news, as they say. In October of 1997, I moved from Colorado back to Florida, this time, to Jacksonville. One of the neat things about coming home is reuniting with your friend-base when you return, and getting back to doing the things with your cronies that you did before you left. Heading to North Carolina with the fellas is one of those things. I'd documented many of these trips on the old web page, but as that's now offline and I'm married to this blog crap instead, I'll migrate the data. The original text from the web page will be carried over in italics, and I may even add a few comments, looking back now after all these years with the eyes of a much more seasoned and worldly man (translation: Old and Blind!)

I've got 10 years worth of trip photos, and adventure stories related, so lets get to it...

Tsali, North Carolina - November 1999:

Matt struts around after a long drive in the wee hours to Tsali.

Matt, like the rest of us, is a little wider, a little less hairy, and a lot more married. There was a time when I first moved back to the east coast when Matt and Gary, and shortly after, Paul/Caroline and Chris and Brett, would be in North Carolina religiously. These were good times. I can remember sitting at my desk on a Friday afternoon and getting a phone call from either Matt-Gary, who lived in Atlanta-Spartanburg at the time, and he'd just pop out the idea, "let's go to Tsali!" And we would. Leave-slip to the boss, bike-dog-tent into the Honda Civic, motor. Done.

NOC Outfitters

Some things seem to never change. Of course, this picture was snapped a little while after the NOC had gone through a major renovation, so it had just changed. But to me, this is what I know, and it always seems to be the same.

The AT (Founder's Bridge) at NOC

River's End Restaurant. If you go, try the Popeye Omelet. They were slow, and operating on the off season staff/menu mode.

Popeye Omelet, Turkey Gone Wild, Supernatural, and Fight to the Finish...great menu choices at the River's End that have all fallen by the wayside as the restaurant tries to adapt to a more diverse audience. Back in the day, you ate here because you were paddling all day, of thru-hiking on the AT, and you wanted protein and fat. Today, 50% of the clientele is now already FAT when they get there on their Harley, and all they want is burgers and crap like that.

They also still have the Sherpa Rice, but I always thought that crap tasted like a$$.

Matt and Gary by the river. Matt gives the "sure you can snap my picture" salute. I was pouting about the limited menu options available at the restaurant, and I think Matt was inches away from kicking my a$$.

The Nantahala River in winter.

Didn't make it onto the original webpage...sort of landed on the cutting room floor, if you will. Gary and Vicki, his wife at the time. Note in this picture, Gary is making the transition from wacky hair to wacky beard! HA!

Next up... Tsali - May, 2001! Stay tuned!

No comments: