Thursday, July 26, 2012

Clay and Christie's Trip to Grandfather Mountain

Clay was good enough to send me the following account of his trip to Grandfather Mountain where he and Georgie met up with Christie and her sister, Fran...and had a fantastic weekend!

  • We got in Thursday evening, we drove George's "new" car, a 2002 Mini Cooper, she decided 22 years of Minivans were enough and I had to agree.  Drove through steady rain interrupted by periods of downpours till we got into the mountains then up and up the road wound, through the fog until we got to the Condos.  What a deal!  Way better than a hotel room and cheaper!  (Always 1 of my favorite words!)  Whether it was rainy days, slow starting mornings, or late nights talking and drinking wine and beer (though I only mixed the 2 once) it was MUCH better to have the condo with the living room and separate bedrooms so there was more visiting time.
  • Friday morning dawned cloudier and rainier.  And I had a couple of work calls I had to deal with, so I was in the office on my computer dealing with that until close to noon.  Good thing George liked Christie and Fran (Christie's sister) and they liked her!
  • Information on the GMHG was not very clear on the website so we decided to drive into town for lunch and to try and learn more.  Met a couple of very helpful ladies who filled us in on what was happening and how to do things, got our tickets and out books for Saturday and had lunch at a place called the Tartan restaurant.  Food was pretty good, attire not as flashy as at the Tilted Kilt (where we ate in Atlanta) but we saw several guys in Kilts, and an honest to God wood nymph!  She was looking quite nymph-like!  (And she knew it too)
  • We decided to pass on the games that afternoon since it was already after 1 and more rain was forecast.  So we drove to a park (I can't recall the name), did some hiking, Christie showed us how to "make the rocks move", picked up some trash to throw away that some idiots decided needed to be in the forest (I tried to tell everybody we saw that those Bud Light cans were NOT christie's but I'm not sure they believed me!), saw some wild turkeys, and saw the bear i missed when i was resting my eyes.  We picked up barbecue for supper and went back to the condo and played scrabble and a card game Fran brought.  Christie and I stayed up talking late into the night.
  • Saturday weather was.... cloudy and rainy, but we got an early start so we could see the massed bands, sheepherding demonstrations, caber tossing and wrestling.  We found the Clan Fraser tent, and MacKenzie, took more pictures, I found out my name is not associated with any Clans, it is a "District" name (which I was told accounted for >70% of the people in Scotland) and learned about that.  George went and listened to fiddlers, singers, and harpists.  Fran, Christie, and I watched more of the games.  Lunch was cornish pasties, shepherd's pie and irish stew, no haggis to be found anywhere!
    I got my kilt
  • I got my kilt
  • We headed back down to the condo mid-afternoon, everybody napped, then went to supper at a nice Italian place (me in kilt).
  • Back to Condo for more scrabble, card game and bananarama.  This was when the vodka was consumed.  And more late night talking.
  • Sunday morning, wake-up "Shit!  time to go home already?!"  The day dawned clear, beautiful sky, decided to go to the top of Grandfather Mountain and do some more hiking, ate lunch then headed home.

We all had a great time, everybody got along, and while the Games were fun, the highlight will always be the times we spent talking and visiting.  It's pretty cool how Outlander and MOP Chat gave us such a great friend in Christie!

The games from the top of Grandfather Mountain

Christie and I debating diving into the crack in that rock in search of Jamie and Claire


  1. Great pictures! Sounds like Clay and Christie had a WONDERFUL time! About the first photo: I saw a woman wearing a similar costume when I was at GFM in 2010. Everybody I spoke to afterward assured me it's normal to see faeries at Highland festivals. :-)


  2. The park was Linville Gorge, where parts of The Last of the Mohicans (the Daniel Day Lewis version) was filmed. Oh, and Fran says to tell y'all that the card game is called Five Crowns(with the Scots version being called Five Clans). And yes, everything about the weekend was wonderful - every day I thank God for my 'new' Outlander friends!


  3. thanks for sharing! looks like you both/all had a great time. nice kilt, clay! --Julie in NJ

  4. Thanks for sharing! Sounds like ya'll had a great time. Does anyone know where other Highland game festivals are?
    (You look great in a kilt, Clay!)