Wednesday, March 9, 2011

he was lookin' for a soul to steal...

We're on the road again.  I'm pretty much writing this as we go along, so bear with me over the bumps and potholes that have made South Carolina's roads famous.  This time we're going to pick up a whole car, not a car part so we're pulling along this little car dolly that goes 14 inches up in the air every time we hit a bump.  Oh, did I mention that Henry has taken up a new career in his retirement?  I encouraged him to find a hobby so he wouldn't always be in my "space", and as always he goes whole hog into everything he does.  He is now a "specialized" mechanic in the import car industry.  That's a fancy name for grease monkey.  Seriously!  He buys those cute little Suzuki Samurais, Sidekicks, and Geo Tracker convertibles that were made in the 1980's and 90's.  He buys fixer-uppers, fixes 'em up and sells them for the sole purpose of having something to do - and making money.  Did I also tell you that he thinks a hobby that you can't make money at is a waste of time?

Unfortunately, these cars are hard to find, so we will be going far and wide to find them.  Today we are on our way to Cleveland to pick up a car.  No, not Cleveland, Ohio - that would not be on my list of places to go before I die.  We're on our way to Cleveland, Georgia, and yes, I realize this doesn't count as one of my "back roads trips to South Carolina towns".  But we are taking the back roads anyway because that's the way we enjoy traveling - enjoying "the one less traveled by", as Robert Frost would say.  We just went through Fountain Inn's main street  - not much to see except a great old mill - turned into an auction barn.  I love auctions!  Then we come across a neat old place that sells every kind of garden statue imaginable!

Old Mill Auction Barn - Fountain Inn, SC

Garden Statue Heaven - near Pelzer, SC

Thirty seconds or less - that seems to be Henry's new goal of driving through South Carolina towns, but you must remember I'm riding with a clone of Richard Petty - but people say he looks more like Junior Johnson.   He finally feels like we're getting somewhere when we roar across the Tugaloo River and cross the Georgia state line - leaving South Carolina as just a fleeting memory.

The rain has set in as we drive into the foothills of Georgia.  We should have checked out the weather forecast before we started out to pick up a convertible with no top!  I'm having to listen to a little grumbling and muttering about that - apparently Henry doesn't share my distaste for bad words.  But after a delicious meal of Citrus Grilled Chicken at Longhorn Steak House, spirits are lifted.

We just crossed over the Chattahoochie River.  Uh oh, isn't that the river where the movie Deliverance was filmed?  It's spooky through here with the rain and fog and I'm looking to be accosted by a bunch of crazies at every bend in the road.  What's scarier still is we're only five minutes from our destination.  Do we dare get out?

We're here, and no crazies here unless you count me and Henry.  This torrential downpour has half the parking lot under water!  But we don't have to worry about this little car getting wet - it already is.  I can tell our delicious lunch mood wasn't going to last long.
The object of our trip - a car minus the top

But hey, it couldn't be all bad.  Right across the street is BabyLand General Hospital - Home of the Cabbage Patch Kids.  When we first pulled up, I thought it was an actual hospital that only delivers babies -that's my "blonde" showing through.   They actually have a new BabyLand just a few minutes away - this was their original one, but it's still full of Cabbage Patch Kids.  During a lull in the storm, I ventured over.
The Original BabyLand General Hospital

It's still raining.  I won't go into the details of getting the car on the tow dolly, but I will tell you it required wearing earplugs and prayers of intervention on my part.  I was beginning to think the devil went down to Georgia....and he was riding in the backseat of our car.

It was rainy and foggy and a beautiful blue mist hung over the mountains as we drove back home.  And finally we were heading back out of the hills of Georgia and pushing our way back into South Carolina with a little blue car on our bumper. I felt a little like Richard Petty's wife - pulling our new race car behind us.  And I'm glad to report there was no serious profanity used - just a few of the four letter "s" word which Henry scatters into his vocabulary when he's not happy.  If the devil did happen to be riding with us, we left him in Georgia because.....well, you know how the rest of the song goes.  It's in the title.  He was lookin' for a soul to steal, and some of those crazies down along the banks of the Chattahoochi might just have one available.

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