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  • Writer's picturetylercates

Natural Bridge, Dirty Dancing and Bucket Lists

A few months ago, I touched on my 'bucket list", a list of things I want to do and places I want to see before I- well, kick the bucket. I have been blessed to have done and seen a great deal in my life, but there's always more to be experienced.

One place I have always wanted to visit is Natural Bridge in Virginia. Between my wrestling days and numerous trips back and forth to Tennessee, I've probably passed the exit to Natural Bridge over 200 times. "If Not Now, When?" popped into my head recently and it felt like now was the answer. Miss B and I decided to take a little trek through Virginia this weekend.

I'm glad I finally went. The sight of Natural Bridge is awe inspiring and anyone who has the opportunity to go should certainly do so. I wish I had done so sooner.

The entire park area is fascinating and gorgeous. If you like history or geology, you will find it interesting. If you aren't into either of those fields, you will enjoy the hike out to Lace Falls. Along the way, you will see the Lost River and Saltpeter Cave. It is not a very difficult hike and is mostly flat, except for the stairs from the visitor center to the trail.

After Miss B and I left Natural Bridge and had an enjoyable lunch at the 50's inspired Pink Cadillac Diner, we headed farther south to our main destination for the weekend. The Mountain Lake Lodge. Staying here was an item on Miss B's bucket list, so we were each able to check one off in a single weekend.

Fans of the film "Dirty Dancing" might recognize the resort as "Kellerman's", as much of the movie was filmed at Mountain Lake Lodge. Myself, I have never seen the movie, but it did not diminish my enjoyment of our visit.

Miss B is a big fan of the movie, so at every turn, I was educated on what happened where on the property in the movie. Much of the resort's marketing is based on the movie, with markers offering facts about the movie throughout the complex.

For me, the scenery was the best part of the trip. The autumn colors were not yet in full force, but there was just enough crimson and gold highlights in the green to make things interesting. I would not be opposed to future trips- in the dead of summer or later in the fall.

While I thoroughly enjoyed the food in the dining room, I was disheartened by the number of men who wore baseball caps while they ate -in a very nice establishment. I suppose that is the norm now and I should no longer expect grown men to behave like gentlemen. I am officially a stodgy old man.

One curiosity is the lake itself. It is virtually dry now, due to it being located on a fault line with underground caves draining the water. Geologists believe that the lake will fill back up at some point. I hope I'm around to see it.

All in all, it was a fantastic trip and one I am grateful I was able to experience.

I've slacked on these, so I might as well throw these out there this time around.

What am I currently reading?

I'm still working on Michael Connelly's catalogue and just finished "The Law of Innoncence" during our time at Mountain Lake Lodge. I'm almost out of Mr. Connelly's books and have a few nonfiction books on my "To Read" list.

To see what I'm reading, follow me on Goodreads

What am I currently watching?

It's football season so that means that schedule revolves around Tennessee Volunteers football. I was able to make it to Knoxville in September for the UTSA game. Other than that, I plan my Saturdays around when the Vols are on TV.

I set my DVR to record "Crazy Like A Fox" re-runs and am working my way through them.

While only two episodes have aired, I have enjoyed what I have seen of "The Irrational", airing Mondays on NBC and stars Jesse L. Martin as a behavioral science professor who aids the police and FBI in solving cases.

On October 20, "Bosch: Legacy" returns to Amazon Freevee and I can't wait. Literally, I can't wait and may go see it in its limited theatrical release on October 18.

What am I currently listening to?

I'm really digging Vixen's new song "Red" right now. Vixen - Red - YouTube

I saw them at M3 Fest back in May in Colombia, MD and their performance re-ignited my affinity for the band.

Blackberry Smoke and Whitey Morgan and the 78's are still in heavy rotation when I'm driving, as well as Foreigner, which seems to be a never-ending occurrence.

Thank you for reading and I'll talk to you soon.

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