Friday, July 16, 2010

Memory Lane Friday - A Tourist Trap

Memory Lane Friday is a weekly opportunity to blog about your memories, to preserve them for your family.  Each week is a different theme, but you are welcome to blog about any memory you'd like and link up.  This week's theme is 'A Tourist Trap'. 
When I was 9 years old, my Dad came home from work one Friday and told us to pack our bags!  He was surprising us with a little road trip.  It was so exciting as we tossed our cold weather gear into duffles and piled into the car.
We didn't even know where we were going (my dad wouldn't tell us), but we knew we'd have some fun.
We ended up in Gatlinburg.
Gatlinburg is a haven in the Great Smokies.
It's a gorgeous piece of the mountains, but man is it ever a tourist trap.

Stuffed full of quaint shops carrying homemade fudge, kettle corn, Native American wares, you will also find a plethora of shops carrying gaudy t-shirts, hats, and other appealing junk.

Note the big bag I had in my hand.  Wish I could remember what "treasure" I had bought with my allowance. 
One thing I remember clearly about the trip was driving on some mountainous road, my brother Taylor perpetually carsick as usual, and being caught in a traffic jam.  On the side of a mountain!  Turns out the traffic jam was due to a black bear on the side of the road.  All these tourists were stopped and tossing marshmallows and crackers out their car windows for the bear to eat.
HELLO!  Yeah, tourists can be idiots.
I think we had some pictures of the bear as we crawled by safely in our car in the traffic, but I'm not sure what happened to those pictures.

Want to participate in Memory Lane Friday?  It's easy.  Just grab the code below the button and copy/paste it into your blog.

Then come back and add your blog address to Mister Linky:

Next week's topic is "That was a first".  Write about your first day of school, the first time you rode a bike, the first time you failed a test or your first roller coaster ride.  There are so many good stories that can come from this topic!

Note:  Not sure what is wrong with Mister Linky this time.  Just tried adding a new Mister Linky in, and hopefully that'll solve the issue.  I may have to switch to a different link up if this continues happening!


Jenny @ Practically Perfect... said...

I love the Great Smokies, but yes, it is very touristy in some parts. I don't know if you've ever read "A Walk in the Woods" by Bill Bryson (hilarious!), but there's a part in there where he talks about how touristy Gatlinburg-area is (and the bears!).

Tiggeriffic said...

Was in Gatlinburg when my children (4) were young.. We stayed at a motel that the creek ran right outside our window.. It was lovely to hear and put us to sleep. It was a money trap..$$$ so many shops to take your money.. Yikes~!
No bears to see on this trip but I'm sure they were lurking at every garbage dumpster. Very interesting how bears can clog up the highway when traveling down the busy road.. and feeding them is a big No No..
Enjoy your blog..

Sonya @ Under the Desert Sky said...

How fun! Surprise trips like that are always great!

I'm all curious about what your treasure was! Maybe one of these days you'll remember and can write a post about it.

Ugh. Feeding the bears? At least no one got hurt (that you know of) because of that.

(Looks like Mister Linky still isn't working, by the way.)

Mere said...

I don't think I've ever been to Gatlinburg. I always love a good tourist trap! I couldnt decided which tourist trap to write about so I wrote about something different...

I sure am glad taylor has gotten over his car sick stage! I just hope Grady doesn't take after his father. :-)

Anonymous said...

How fun! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Unknown said...

I went to the art school there one summer. Once you get off that main road it is beautiful.

Stopping from Mom Loop!

Anonymous said...

I might just participate in the future! We've been to Gatlinburg, Cades Cove and Dollywood last November! We loved it and the fall foliage was still brilliant on that side of the mountains vs. the NC side. Thanks for your wonderful comments on my blog!

Anonymous said...

Don't know for sure what was in your bag....but I do remember you bought a pink t-shirt that had a grey horse inside of a glittery horseshoe (junky t-shirt shop next to our motel.) You loved that shirt and wore it to shreds.

Deb Chitwood said...

Following back from Mom Loop. What a great idea to preserve your memories each week! We live in Colorado Springs, where we find bears in our neighborhood (and our yard) periodically. Not a good idea to feed them! (But they are fun to watch).

Unknown said...

I'm a SUCKER for tourist traps! I want to go there now, lol.

Great post!