Friday, April 10, 2009

Buses and tulips

Last weekend, Jon and I went to Asheville, North Carolina. Our friends have a cousin who owns a condo located in one of the many ritzy exclusive neighborhoods dotting the mountains around Asheville. Here is the view from the porch:

Jon and his buddy did some bike riding. I lounged around the condo with his wife and kids. Quite thoroughly relaxing. I knocked out a book while there, The Little Giant of Aberdeen County.

We went into Asheville twice. It's such an enjoyable little city, even if it tends towards being overwhelmingly trendy and enthusiastically hippie-ish in some enclaves. We stuck to the downtown area, near Haywood Street and Biltmore Avenue. There's tons of shops and interesting restaurants to check out. We ate at Salsa's, a Mexican Caribbean fusion place, and just about died from the deliciousness of the food. I got a wild mushroom enchilada, which came smothered in herbed goat cheese, accompanied with a spicy veggie/salsa mix (it was neither quite one nor the other), with a base of yummy black beans. Oh, if only Lexington had something similar!

We made sure to swing by Wall Street, which has some whimsical statues of cats and a rat. We didn't notice the rat until a passerby pointed it out, sneaking by on the other side of the balcony:

For dessert, we went to the Chocolate Lounge, where we each got liquid truffles, flavored with cayenne and cinnamon. After the first sip, we looked at each other and grinned. We knew we had made a good choice for dessert.

The second day we went to Asheville, Jon dropped me off and I walked around some more while he was off riding his bike close to Mt. Mitchell. I stopped in Woolworth Walk, thinking I would be politely interested in the arts and crafts exhibited therein. An hour later, I emerged, a little dazed by the incredible talent I saw. I memorized Susan Luke's name, planning to return and purchase one of her still-life paintings (the examples in the link aren't the best ones). When I saw the Double Decker Bus Cafe, I couldn't resist ducking in. The photo below is on the second floor.

This is the closest we got to the Biltmore Estate:

A very relaxing and pleasant weekend!

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