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Vapor Tales

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National Cancer Survivor's Day - 2014

Saturday morning, Ashley and I visited the North Carolina Zoo, the largest of its kind in North America. While we did spend several hours that morning and afternoon wandering through the enormous 5-mile loop, we went to the zoo because that's where Randolph Cancer Center was holding its 2014 National Cancer Survivors Day event. Just as with Relay, I got to meet some new people and say hi to a few I'd met previously. This particular crowd is always a blast and I very much look forward to these events.

On the menu Saturday were excellent breakfast items, Bingo and a well-thought-out way to record the presence of the year's attending survivors -- a tree, whose leaves were placed a thumbprint at a time by the survivors only. They also signed the bottom to fill in the grass. I found this especially fitting as well, considering the people really are the roots holding this support structure in place for survivors at all stages, including those going through the thick of it right now.

I'll never get over the way this group has come together and truly built a family within the RCC family to encourage each other and make certain nobody ever has to go through cancer alone. Credit to these people and I'm honored to repeatedly move among them at these events.

As I did for Relay, but on a much smaller scale, with many fewer people and a lot less time, I put together a few images and tossed in a little something to listen to which you watch. Hope you enjoy!

Relay For Life 2014 - Asheboro

I was recently fortunate enough to spend the day in Bicentennial Park in downtown Asheboro, NC, for the 2014 Relay For Life event. I met many great people, had a great time wandering through the crowd, checking out all the booths and talking to people -- people I'd never seen before but who felt perfectly at home stopping me for a chat. That's the kind of place Asheboro is; Everybody knows everybody else and as I'm told, everybody else's business as well, but that's OK by me. I have nothing to hide and I enjoy hearing the stories from around town.

The community of Asheboro is one which I really stumbled upon accidentally. I had no idea I'd be spending so much time there when Ashley and I moved to North Carolina five months ago. It's an hour down the road, but worth every minute of the drive, which isn't terrible in itself, what with all the scenery and postcard after postcard out the window. But forget about the landscape for now, it's the people who really make Asheboro special. I've never felt so welcome, or at least noticed in any city before. I can't even say with certainty my home town back in Idaho was this inviting, but I haven't been back there in a while, not for an extended stay anyway.

I won't go so far as to say Asheboro is your modern Mayberry, but it certainly has some of the fabled cities finer qualities and earns its community feel. Perhaps I'm just being optimistic or finding a way to block what I don't want to see -- and I'm sure Asheboro has its secrets as any small down does -- but I am happy to be there every week and hope to plug into the area even more.

Take a peek at this audio slideshow I threw together from the weekend event and see if you can see what I mean.

Rollin' Through Raleigh

Ashley and I had a little time to kill today. This time, instead of heading west, we went east and wound up in Raleigh. I parked in the first open, truck-sized spot I found. We hopped out, Ash with phone, me with my camera backpack, and we began to weave our way through downtown. We enjoyed watching a parade of vendors move in and set up for what we suspected was some sort of booze fest, then hit up the North Carolina Historical Museum -- free admission. The highlight for both of us were stock cars driven by Dale Sr. and Richard Petty on display. After an hour or so there, including a swing through the Call To Arms section, which showcased George Preddy's dress uniform and pieces recovered from his wrecked Mustang, we stopped by Chuck's for lunch -- excellent half-pound, medium-rare burger and fries with some spiced-up special sauce. We rolled down the windows for the 50-minute drive home on the highway, which the trees told us runs right where a thick forrest was once whole. As is often the case, I made a photo here and there. These are a few of the keepers from the trip. Hope you enjoy.
Exploring Raleigh North Carolina
Exploring Raleigh North Carolina
Exploring Raleigh North Carolina
Exploring Raleigh North Carolina
Exploring Raleigh North Carolina
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