A Retreat of Sorts Day 1 Monday Oct 28 2019

….aaaand a diary of sorts.

Quick update – still sober so there’s that, turned over 8 years this past August.  I’ve been on Short Term Disability for a bit now for issues related to Depression as a result of…you guessed it….Depression.  Dad passing earlier this year and my own attitude about life landed me in a place where I was useless at work as well as a pretty shitty outlook on life.  I am seeing a therapist twice a week during this time and just trying to get more of those happy hormones she (therapist herein referred to) keeps telling me to work on. Also brought some books to read she suggested.  First is The Depression Workbook by Mary Ellen Copeland, next is The Antidote by Oliver Burkman.

Right now specifically I am in the Mountains. By myself.  Wife had a great idea of me taking a trip to the mountains bc that’s my jam, and by golly that woman is pretty smart.  So I’m here chillaxing by myself for a week and a half in Western North Carolina.  Gonna do some hiking, leafing, waterfalls, Blue Ridge Parkway, etc, etc…even going to do the Virginia Creeper Trail on my bike I brought with.

Thank You to my wife for having this idea and being supportive of me doing it while she’s left alone at home with a teen, preteen, 2 dogs, and 2 cats.  Also Thank You especially to my Father in Law for letting me use his Resort Membership to be here on his dime.


Today I woke up early before dawn.  Didn’t sleep that great last night.  It’s 0945 now, and today I’ve already watched a spectacular sunrise over the mountains with the trees all nice and colored.  I even saw big patches of fog down in the valley from my mountain side condo perch.  Additionally, I locked myself out of my condo while doing it.  Couldn’t sleep, got up and dressed, made coffee and went on the porch to watch the sunrise.  Must’ve been out there an hour before I thought of coming back in and found myself locked out.  Still, a good time was had by all even tho the resort after hours emergency call number took over 30 minutes to let me back in.

Planning on hiking today around GrandFather Mountain then maybe drive the Ridge later.  Read some this evening and stream some shows on the TV when I get back.  Will prolly find somewhere to eat dinner then come back.

Updates later when I get back this evening………

Aaaand I’m back.

Got over to Grandfather Mountain, paid the $22 per person fee and drove up to the Restaurant/Zoo area.  Went inside, very nice looking and specTACular drive over to the mountain and up the mountain.  Went in had a sandwich then mosied down the hill a bit to Split Rock then back up to the Zoo.  They’ve got Otters, Bald Eagles, Black Bears, and Elk.  Pretty neat.  All the while tho I’m seeing all these families going around, Moms, Dads, kids, Grandparents and I’ve got that voice in my head berating me I should be here with MY family. Ya, and I wish I was.  Things like that SHOULD be shared with family, but I’m not here to be away from my family, I’m here to clear my head.

After that I continued up the mountain a bit to an overlook and took some really nice pics of the valley below.  Even got one of my feet dangling over the edge pics.  Did you know Grandfather Mountain was used in Forest Gump?  One of the turns you go up has a sign “Forest Gump ran this turn” or something like that.

Then it was on to the next.  I parked at the lower parking for the Mile High Swinging Bridge and I hiked the Bridge trail the 0.4 ass kicking miles up to the top parking lot.  At the top, I”ll admit, I took a break.  Had a good reminder I’m a 43 yr old out of shape fat ass today….and I loved it.  Took some more stairs up to the Swinging Bridge and crossed it.  It was freaky, it sways and creaks, and there’s signs that say max load 40 people on the bridge so you’re kind of eye balling it whether there’s a bunch on there or not. There’s also a cross bar in the footing of the bridge right out in the middle that reads 5280 ft mile high or something. Out at the edge I found a spot to cop a squat and just took in the view and rested.

There was an employee right off the bridge and another hanging out at the edge to help people and answer questions.  I was wearing my Stank Industries shirt which is a play on the joke at the end of Avengers Civil War.  Delivery for Tony Stank!  The dude at the end got a kick out of it.  A lot of folks on the trail up I felt were kind of eyeballing me like why’s this guy here but so what.  Ya Imma fat ass but imma keep going on this trail, just hella slower than you.  Maybe it was just weird seeing a big dude all alone out there.

Once I got off the bridge I headed down to checkout the gift shop and found a fridge magnet for my wife.  She really likes those, but this one may not count because I was there alone.  I hope she likes it.  Still on the lookout for something cool for the kids.

After that I headed back to the trail the 0.4 ass kicking miles down.  Up is more cardio and your quads and glutes, while down is more your quads and knees. Ahh, pain cream, you’re my friend. Really wanted to do the black trail heading off from the same parking lot too.  Brochure says it’s only a mile round trip but says to plan for 2 hrs.  Ummmm, no.  My legs went ahead and talked me out of that.  Instead I drove back down the hill to the Woods Trail which is advertised as a great trail for the kids and old folks.  Well, they need to go ahead and add spaghetti legged out of shape people too.  Was a nice way to wrap the Mountain.  Found a nice bench in the middle of the trail in the woods and just enjoyed the ambiance of the colored leaves and the wind through the trees.

I decided to go to a Mexican place to eat before I came back and had a nice steak fajita meal.  They even had a Salsa bar which was pretty good.

Now I’m back at the condo chilling out for the rest of the night wondering what I may do tomorrow.  Whatever may come.


As always, hope you’re all doing great and you can find some measure of happy hormones by reading about my shenanigans.

~ by sobriety6923 on October 28, 2019.

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