First off, my apologies for the lack of news this week – where did the time go? I do have an excuse though, and it’s part of my report on my Memorial Day trip to Western North Carolina. Here it is:

On Friday afternoon we left Atlanta in the rain but were happy to find the skies mostly clear in Andrews, NC where we’d be spending the night. On Saturday morning we went mining at Sheffield Ruby Mine near Franklin, NC where Leah found a “honker” of a ruby – 38 carats! Before you start drooling, let me tell you it doesn’t look like much and I suspect most of those carats are dirt.


On the way back from the mine we drove by the Nantahala River and saw plenty of catch-and-release trout fishermen and even got out and hiked a bit along the river. After grilling out for dinner we hiked around a bit and enjoyed the cool weather.


After returning, sometime around Sunday night / Monday morning I came down with a nasty stomach virus. By Thursday the virus was still around and although I felt better today I went to the doctor just to be sure. According to the doc, there’s a good chance I may have been infected by giardia, a parasite that likes to hang out in the water, particularly in mountainous areas. Let’s just say that next time I stick my hands in a dirty mine flume I’ll wash my hands thoroughly before digging into a footlong sub. Lesson learned 🙂

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