I’m not sure how we ended up watching the sunset from Fort Mountain State Park while eating Little Rome’s lasagne and sipping from a bottle of Ruffino’s Chianti, It all started with a lot of indecision and conflict. We could not justify leaving the house in the mess it was in after me being out of town on business for a week and before that in Florida! We literally threw out every bit of our own sound advice like, work before pleasure, stitch in time saves nine and we “Headed North”. Heading North is our default move. We tried to do an errand and dropped off dry cleaning, but our hearts weren’t in it. We took along some clothes to take back to the store, we never made it. We had ramblin in our shoes and needed to put some gravel in our travel. So we pointed the Breeze north and lit out. Oh, the Breeze? Well, that’s our truck that we detour in. It’s another story.
We love the North Georgia Mountains and if all else fails we figure we can grab a bag of boiled peanuts and come home. And it looked like we were going to do just that. We did find some for sale on the side of the road from a women that owned two kittens named Ms Kitty and Yellow. They were strays rescued, by her husband and she let us know right quick, had she brought them home, there would have been heck to pay. Funny how husbands get a pass when they show a little sensitivity. She was proud of her boiled peanuts and said they’d been cooking for over 24 hours. I believe her, because they were hot through and through and plenty salty.
As we pulled into Elijay we drove through and followed some signs to a yard sale that turned into a porch sale on one of Elijay’s back roads with not much to offer except two Hawaiian Hampsters, a cage and 20 lbs of food for $30 bucks, no thank you. So we buzzed over to the Log Home sales center and inquired and toured and dreamed and left. We were all but on our way back toward the house and then we decided to take the long way home…
We headed to Little Rome, a family owned restaurant that serves up the best Italian food in Chatsworth. Made a carry out order for a lasagne dinner and two salads. They were so friendly there and when we told them our sunset plans, they helped us pack every thing up and insisted on extra mints for any after dinner sparkin (aka kissing). We ran over to the Bi-Lo, grabbed a bottle of vino, where they let me be short 6 cents and I got a recipe for crackers, oil and ranch seasoning from a guy standing in line ahead of me. Then we raced to the top of Fort Mt. I don’t know anyone from Chatsworth, Georgia, but the few folks I met are good people.
The sun was pacing us and we worried because we knew there was a bit of a walk to the overlook. We pull up to the gate and pulled out an envelope to pay the $5 pass and there was not 1, but 2 walking sticks. I don’t mean the wood kind. There were two insects that looked like little sticks just hanging out at the gate. Kind of your park greeters, because the guard shack was abandoned.
We loaded up our Bi-Lo bag, seconding as a picnic basket, grabbed my flashlight and wine opener and made it to the top in pretty short order. I suggest to anyone doing this to get to the overlook trail head about 45 minutes before sunset. There was a group there complete with an old park ranger named Bob. He was telling his stories in a loud deep voice. So, Lisa and I held back from the main deck and ate our dinner using the rails as our table. We watched, took pictures and enjoyed. The Sunset was awesome as it teased us between clouds and shone like a orange ball before giving way to the horizon to light up the sky in pink. The crowd and ranger left and we stayed, and drank our wine from the bottle like two kids and sparked a little too.
Now I’m not one to admit to being scared in the woods, but it was dark inside that mountain forest. Me knowing the history of the abandon fort there and being secretly hopeful big foots, moth men, black panthers and the like do exist in North Georgia, did not help my constitution in those dark woods. However, I’m sure the shared liquid courage likely saved me from any embarrassing high pitched screams at odd shadows of twisted tree limbs. We made it out unharmed.