“I’m absolutely starving,” my wife says, digging through her purse for something as I walk into the kitchen, clearing my throat to get her attention. “Wow, don’t YOU look nice!”
I do feel pretty spiffy. I am wearing my new brown pants and a striped blue shirt. My belt and my shoes match. My hair is combed and sprayed, though it is really not so much “hair” as the suggestion of hair, a few brave and resilient strands that remind me on darker days of crabgrass growing in the crack of a sidewalk. She finds this preferable to the way I used to wear my hair, which is not at all — in those lonely days before she came into my life, I shaved my head, fancying that I looked more like Yul Brynner or Mister Clean than Uncle Fester.
It’s about finding a balance between your creative soul and your sanity.
“When you feel you’re doing what you’re supposed to be doing, and things aren’t going well at the same time, and you still believe in what you’re doing, but there’s no relief,” said Thomas Johnson. “It makes you feel crazy, because you believe in what you’re doing, and you think it’s important and good, and it’s not connecting. Am I crazy? Am I too close to it?”
Two short years ago, the backyard of Waynesville’s Grace Church in the Mountains was basically just grass, save for a single container bed at the top of the hill.
These days, the view is quite different. Six long container beds stretch out along the slope from the road to the church’s back door. A scaffolding that held a tent of beans during the warmer months stands to the side, and at the bottom of the hill is yet another group of raised beds, built high at the end of a flat walkway so that people with mobility issues can still access and enjoy them. There’s a toolshed, a gaggle of scarecrows and two in-ground beds dug directly into the land.
It’s 3 p.m. on a weekday, a time when any restaurant would be well within its rights to be all but empty. But business at Granny’s Kitchen in Cherokee is humming along steadily, the main parking lot about half full and the hostess busily engaged with fielding phone calls, ringing up customers on their way out and welcoming customers on their way in.
Western Carolina University’s Mountain Heritage Day, a free family oriented festival that celebrates Southern Appalachian culture through concerts, living-history demonstrations, competitions and awards programs, will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 30, on the WCU campus in Cullowhee.
Named one of the top 20 festivals in the Southeast by the Southeast Tourism Society, this year’s event will include additional musical acts, vendors and an expectation of more visitors, organizers said.
The foundation of culture in Western North Carolina lies in a keen emphasis on things locally made and grown. Whether it’s the porch sounds of music or stitching together ones heritage with an elaborate quilt, quality and one-of-a-kind are attributes to the many products offered in this region. And at the heart of these traditions is the fresh produce raised and harvested from the rich soil of Southern Appalachia.
To combat the rising cost of feeding inmates, Macon County commissioners chose to ditch a $360,000 food contract with Mission Health and Angel Medical Center for a less expensive option.
I had just reached for the eggplant parmesan sandwich when it was asked.
“What do you think about God?”
Caitlin Derico was 11 years old when her family’s Christmas tradition shifted from stockings to service.
“I really would hope that this program would expire,” said Tom Knapko. “But, that hasn’t been the case with increasing need for these baskets.”