Monday, June 30, 2008

What happened in Room 545?

This is the haunted room in The Grove Park Inn in Asheville, NC.
"As the tale goes, the ghost is that of a young woman dressed in pink who fell to her death in the Palm Court Atrium around 1920." She has been seen by many hotel employees.
To get this picture, I had to travel to the 5th floor in a small elevator built into the rocks that make the hotel. The elevator operator took us to the 5th floor. I had my 14 month old son on my back in his carrier. I saw the door as soon as I got off the elevator and got my camera up to shot. As soon as I paused at the door, my son starts screaming as loud as he can. I quickly try and take the picture, but the screen reads "CF card is full". NO WAY!! There was only about 35 pics on this card!! I quickly delete a couple of pics and am able to snap a quick shot. I get my son off my back and get back on the elevator. I tell the operator, "I guess he doesn't like the 5th floor." He replied, "Well, it is haunted, you know. It strange, though. The Pink Lady supposedly likes kids."
My son calmed down as soon as we returned to the main floor.
Really weird.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Friday After Five

We went to Friday After Five downtown the other night (Friday). It was really hot still and we took the kids. We got there at about 5:30. We were 4 of about 20 people. Well, maybe a few more people were there than that. It actually did pick up a little shortly after, but my first impression was, "Uhhh, really? This is it?" There was a church playground right next to where the band set up so we just hung out there so the kids could play.
I must say, I did like the song selections by the band. Tom Petty, Green Day, Lynyrd Skynyrd. I guess they are your typical cover band, including the fact that they sounded like crap. I have no idea what the band's name is, so, sorry, I can't post their schedule.
My favorite band member had to be the lead singer. Very stationary, unenthusiastic. Bright, red polo shirt with the collar up....way up.
There was a huge empty space from the stage to the "crowd". I'm not sure if there were supposed to be people in that area or not. Maybe people were staying clear of the bass guitarist (the guy in black) hocking the biggest loogies I've ever seen out into the street. I did get a sweet picture of them...from the back. I do have a side shot, but it doesn't capture the fiery energy of this gas-powered rock and roll band.

Monday, June 9, 2008

War is not the answer.

I visited the Quaker church here in Statesville a couple of weeks ago. To me, this is surprising on a couple of levels. a) Statesville has a Quaker church??? and b) why am I going to church in the first place.
a) yes
b) that's a good question

I went without wife or kids. It was part scouting mission to see if kids would be cool at a Quaker meeting...that's what they are called, meetings, and part looking for something different that might appeal to me in Statesville.
It turns out that, yes, children are very welcome at the meetings and they can talk as much or as little as they want. The same rule applies to adults.
There is no pastor/minister/priest/holy man.
No performance to watch.
No music to listen to (unless you bring your own).
No obligation to pray or read aloud or anything else that I've had to do at other churches (mostly Presbyterian, because that's what I was raised)
They have Bibles and hymnals if you want to read scripture or songs.
They believe in The Trinity but don't make blanket statements in regards to it because they believe that what you believe is not necessarily right on with what the guy next to you believes through and through. And it's not their place to question others' beliefs. Be peaceful with yours and I'm peaceful with mine.
You are supposed to (I think) be at peace with yourself through self awareness and self discovery. Also be at peace with everything and everyone else. (the Quakers are pacifists) Contemplate what you will and if you so choose to talk about it to anyone else or the entire group (I was one of three people there) then you go right ahead.
I gotta say that I liked it. I was alone with no obligations to anything. I could just sit in the silence and look at the stained-glass windows and really old organ. I read a pamphlet on prevention of deadly conflict (very insightful)
In the end I did not stand up and share my thoughts with anybody else. I did talk to the guy in charge before and after the meeting. I learned about the history of the building and a little bit of lore about Statesville.
I will go back and try it with the fam. Maybe not too soon though, they didn't seem to have any air-conditioning.
I did return later that day to take some pics. Click here. The pics are not separated into albums, so you'll just have to look through the list. If it looks like a small church, that's it.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot. I got a bumper sticker,

I don't remember getting that at any other church, but then Quakers don't have an annual BBQ to advertise on T-shirts either.

Monday, June 2, 2008

My Flickr

Most of my new pictures are going into my Flickr account. You can see some of them on the top right of this page. I'll keep posting here too, but it's better organized on Flickr. Check it out. Make comments please. Tag them as favorites if you like them.