what did i do this weekend you’re wondering? well, rach and i went to gatlinburg! why not, you know? it was so great. and arguably the most efficient 29 hours of my life. we totally conquered good ole gatlinburg. and by conquered, i mean CONQUERED. okay, let me tell you the backstory.
rach’s birthday was in august and i decided that her b’day gift should be a day trip somewhere. so almost three months later here we are. monday we decided to go somewhere this weekend. thursday night we picked gatty. we booked a hotel and then boom- the rest is history. well not quite. we made an extensive list of things we wanted to do once we got there. ripley’s believe it or not, fannie farkles arcade, the guiness museum, mini-golf, ripley’s haunted house, the earthquake ride, sky lift. we went nuts.
we left athens at 4:30 pm friday and got to gatlinburg around 8. (sadly, gatlinburg is in the same time zone as athens and you don’t gain an extra hour. who knew that the entire state of tennessee wasn’t in the central time zone? not i. and not rach apparently.) and then saturday night, we left gatlinburg a little before 6 and by 9:45, we were back in athens. impressive i know. but what’s really impressive is what happened in the middle.
yep, you probably guessed it. we did everything we planned on doing! and with time to spare.
some trip highlights…
-we ate an awesome dinner at an awesome steak restaurant friday (i.love.steak) and rach got a free reese’s cup cheesecake for dessert because it was her birthday (well sort of…)!
-we bought an awesome souvenir fiber optic little flashlight at the haunted house. it was totally unuseful in the actual haunted house (which was terrrrrrrifying by the way) but a great souvenir nonetheless.
-we got to spend time with the Lord in a small creek on saturday morning. it was so peaceful. i’m so glad that got to happen. knowing, acknowledging and talking to Him makes or breaks my whole day.
-and in similar news, the scenery was just BEAUTIFUL all around us. water + mountains. too good.
-we had pizza for lunch. you know life’s good when you eat pizza.
-and we ate fudge! mmm.
-we both got a hole-in-one playing mini-golf! ask rach who won overall. i’m sure she’d love to tell you:)
-we won 2 fannie farkle mugs with all of our hard earned arcade tickets! gosh, i’m pumped to use those. and we also were able to get 2 fake twenty dollar bills, 2 rainbow sours, and 2 spider rings with our earnings. wooo. also, they kept the arcade open just for us! it was so sweet. and we were pretty much the only people out and about gatlinburg at midnight.
-rach got the highest hole on the skee ball machine. twice.
-less cool but also exciting, i got the bonus prize on some silly quarter machine game. 60 tickets babyyyy.
-our hotel had shampoo in sauce packets. and a full length horizontal mirror across a whole wall of the room. and of course, cable tv! always a personal fav.
-we took pictures at almost every place we went. success. some turned out better than others. photography isn’t a skill everyone has.
-neither of us fell off the skylift.
-we packed a cooler of snacks. all we ate out of there was one peach, two bananas, and some goldfish. actually, lots of goldfish.
-we got the most primo parking in all of gatlinburg! 5 bucks, all day at the christian gardens in the middle of town. the parking attendant there was so kind. and very obviously a christian. it was so neat how generous he was and such a sweet picture of how christians really stand out in the way they treat people.
-we talked in british accents half of the way home. and got to talk about how wonderful our friends are and in such different ways.
-we had 5 cds for the trip. only one was a full length cd because rach’s computer kept messing up in the middle of burning. so we had on average 4 songs on each cd.
the weekend was wonderful. it was so great to get to spend the weekend with rach in such a fun city. i love her so much. and i love adventures so much, too. and i’m not saying this to be anything other than factual, i had a great weekend with the Lord. i felt like He was with us on our trip. i didn’t feel Him every second but He was very present. not just in my thoughts and my heart but in everything around us. and in us, too. which is one of my most favorite things about Him- that He gets to come with me anywhere and everywhere i go. well rather, i get to go with Him wherever He takes me. i loved getting to go on a trip with my best friend for a weekend. my heart is so joyful and at rest with her. but truth is that no matter how much i want her to, she won’t get to go on every trip i will go on, both figuratively and literally.
but the great news is my Best Friend will. He will be with me always. my prayer is that all the days of my life, He’ll be just that- my very Best Friend. and the One that my heart would choose above all others.
life is just better when He’s around.