Wednesday, May 31, 2023 - Today we drove for two and a half hours from Rutherfordton, NC to the Salem Breeze RV Park about ten miles south of Winston-Salem, NC. The drive was fine, but getting out of the RV park was a little bit of a challenge. I needed to turn to the left, but the turn was too sharp. I decided to pull to the right and then back up into the space beside me and then pull out to the left from there. That is what I did; a rather large "three-point turn" with the RV attached and uphill. Once we got turned around, the rest of the exit was fine.
The park is very nice and extremely easy to get into and out of. We picked a slot and moved right into the slot. We paid online, so we do not have to interact with anyone. The spots are very nice, wide, and easy to access. There are no services here
Thursday, June 1, 2023 - We are going to visit several different tourist places throughout the Winston -Salem area. We started our at the Shell Gas Station Clam Shell Building. This is a vintage gas station that was built to look like a large yellow clam shell. There were several around the country and only a few still remain. It is not a functioning gas station, but simply a model. We then drove to the "Tea Pot" in Old Salem. The tea pot is a metal pot that was created by a metal craftsman who wanted to have a sample of his work outside his business for customers to see. It is mounted on a pedestal, but is not very large standing about five feet tall. We then noticed that we were in the middle of Old Salem, a town that was built around the Moravian Church and culture. It is also the home of Salem College. The Moravian influence in America is pretty unique. Originally from the area of the Check Republic in Europe, the group came to America in search of religious freedom. They settled in Pennsylvania first and the moved to Savannah. Savannah did not work out, so they then moved to the North Carolina area and bought land in what is now the Winston-Salem area. There are Moravian churches all over the world. The Moravians really believed in education and felt that both boys and girls should be able to read so that they could read and interpret the bible on their own. That is why girls were able to attend Salem College from the start. We toured the town, ate their thin ginger cookies, and took a tour of the Moravian Church. After the tour of the town and church, we went to Subway for lunch sandwiches.
After visiting Old Salem, we drove to the Tanglewood County Park. It only cost $2 to get in and it is a beautiful park. There is an arboretum, horse stables where you can take horse rides, tennis facilities, golf course, RV camping area (very nice), lakes for fishing, and lots of trails for hiking and biking. A pretty impressive park. We walked through the arboretum and then took a hike over to the RV park where we met all threw camp host families. They explained to us how to best utilize the park and get a slot that fits our needs. This would be a very good place to park and the price was about the same as military facilities.
Friday, June 2, 2023 - Today, we head to Mt. Airy to check out the town and the Andy Griffith Museum that is located there. Andy Griffith was born and raised in Mt. Airy and Mt. Airy was used as the reference town to create the small town of "Mayberry" in the Andy Griffith shows. No shows were filmed here, but the set in Hollywood were designed after Mt. Airy. There is a Floyd's Barbershop, Snappy Lunch, Wally's Garage, the town hall/courthouse, and the jail in Mt. Airy. The town has built the Andy Griffith show reference into a lucrative tourist industry. You can even take a ride around town in a vintage police car from the era of the show with sirens blaring and all. We started out at the Andy Griffith Museum and saw lots of paraphernalia from the TV show. We also say the statue of Andy and Opie going fishing that is out in front of the museum. After exploring the museum, we walked downtown and went inside Floyd's Barber Shop. The are barbers there who will cut your hair for $15. We then walked past Snappy Lunch and explored the town. We then walked to the south of town to Wally's Service Station. This is where you can pay to ride in the police car. We chose not to do so, and saved $50. We then went back to our truck to get our picnic lunch. We needed a place to sit and eat lunch, so we selected on of the parks that came up on Google and began to drive there. When we arrived at the Veteran's Park, we noticed that the Mt. Airy Fiddler's Convention was going on today and all day tomorrow. We ate our lunch at a table near the entrance and decided that we would come back tomorrow to experience the event. Mt. Airy is a very nice town and its ties to the Andy Griffith Show make it even more special.
Saturday, June 3, 2023 - Today, we washed half of the RV in the morning since it was such a nice day and we had not washed the RV in a while. We washed the side that was in the shade, but had to wait on the side that was in the Sun due to the hot surface of the rig. After lunch, we decided to head to Mt. Airy for the Mt. Airy Fiddler's Convention.
The Mt. Airy Fiddler's Convention is a competition, of sorts, where people can register and then play their instrument of choice in a friendly competition with others playing the same instrument. The instruments include the fiddle, dulcimer, lap or slide guitar, basee fiddle, banjo, mandolin, auto harp, and guitar. Then there was "clog" dancing for young children while the scores were being compiled. Then after that (in the evening), the small bands would compete. It was mostly blue grass music. It was a lot of fun and the spectators seemed to enjoy it too. As the early evening progressed, a large thunderstorm with lightning began to build just south of us and we were concerned that it might move towards us and wash out the show. Fortunately, it moved south and the show could continue. Unfortunately, we had to drive into and through the rain heading back to the RV. At times, it was extremely hard to see the lines on the highway and some people were exiting the road during the storm. Luckily, I could see the road pretty well, especially when I turned on our fog lights, so we muscled through and made it back safely. We had not anticipated rain, so we left out all our trailer washing tools and towels and a tool box. Luckily, our neighbors, Paul and Betsy, realized that we were gone and put all of our "stuff" under the RV and out of the rain. We thanked them before the left in the morning and told them how much we appreciated their help.
Sunday, June 4, 2023 - One of the first things we did today was to thank Paul and Betsy for stowing our gear out of the rain. They are departing for their next stop today, so we made sure that we did not miss them. We then decided to take the morning to work on the blog and get some chores done around the RV. It is still overcast and a little windy, so we decided to put off the RV cleaning until tomorrow when it is supposed to be nicer. This afternoon, we plan to go to the R.J. Reynolds home that is a home/museum with very nice gardens around the complex. On Sunday, it is only open from 1:30 pm until 4:30 Pm, so we plan to be there just about the time it opens.
We visited the RJ Reynolds home now called "Reynolda" which is the feminine version of Reynolds. This house was built by RJ Reynolds wife, Catherine. It contains 64 rooms and spans over 34,000 square feet of space and that is just the house. They had four children together and he died in 1918, age 68, while she died at age 44 in 1924. The bungalow style home was built on large acreage with other buildings, a lake, gardens, and lots of open land. RJ Reynold's father owned slaves and RJ was doing his best to turn that all around. Being the time period after slavery was deemed illegal, RJ Reynolds and Catherine did their best to help the the African Americans who worked for them. They build schools for black and whites and made sure that the teachers were good for both and that the texts were also the same. The house has a large entry room/visitation room, bedrooms, music room with huge pipe organ, bowling alley, shooting range, handball court, swimming pool, and more. Be sure to see the photo gallery to see for yourself the beauty and elegance of the house. The home has now been turned into a museum with nearly 500 individual pieces of art available for display. Some of the renowned artists on display include O'Keefe, Sargeant, Cassat, and many more.
Monday, June 5, 2023 - Today was a slightly overcast day, so this made it a great day to wash the RV. I completed the back door and the right side by 11:00am. I then replaced the batteries in the units that send a wireless signal from the propane tanks to my phone. We now can tell how much propane we have by checking the phone. After that, I drove to the local McDonald's that is just a quarter mile away to use their WiFi and load photos to the blog. After loading two sets of pictures, I was completely up-to-date on photo upload for today. Lisa and I then went to a self-serve car wash where we washed the Ford F-350. WE then headed over to the laundromat to wash all the white towels the we had dirtied washing the RV and the truck. After that, it was back to the RV to relax for a while.
Tuesday, June 6, 2023 - Today we drove over to Kernersville to take a tour of the Korners Folley home. This is a home that was built around 1890 by an architect and furniture designer named Jule Gilmore Komer. He did some work for RJ Reynolds and other wealthy land owners in the area at the time. His ornate craftmanship is on display throughout the house. Some rooms have very low ceilings, and some have very high ceilings. The house was originally designed with a horse carriage path through the house between the stable area and the house itself. When he married, his new wife said, "No horses in the house!" So he made the stables and carriage path into rooms for the home. It has 15 rooms and 11 fireplaces.