Wednesday, July 30, 2014

What I Learned in July

1. A giraffe's tongue is really long.
And while that may seem random, it really came from watching Caleb feed a giraffe at the Knoxville Zoo.  The giraffe would stick his (her?) tongue out and allow the kiddos to place things on the tongue. 
Note: I also learned that Caleb Bates is braver than I am, because I got squeamish just watching from a few feet away.

2. The Smoky Mountains are never more beautiful than when they are seen at sunset from a 200 ft ferris wheel.
I love ferris wheels.  This one at The Island (I know... how is it an island in the middle of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee? But it's a fabulous marketing spot.  Good restaurants.  A light show in the water fountain. Arcades. And the ferris wheel.  I'd highly recommend going.)
But back to my statement... the sun was just beginning to set.  You looked to your left, and there was the Smoky Mountains in all of their majesty.  To your right, Pigeon Forge and the twinkling lights of all the action.  Loved it.

3. If you've read my blogs this month, you know I'm re-reading my favorite... Gone with the Wind.  So many of the characters feel like old friends. 
Belle Watling is the girl they love to hate... the prostitute who Rhett Butler gives money to and supports.  Scarlett is fascinated by her.  I was fascinated when I was googling places to visit in KY, and saw that the character it is thought that Margaret Mitchell based Belle on was a real person residing in Lexington, Ky... and is buried there. Belle Brezling ran a brothel in Lexington in the early 1900s. While Mitchell never claimed that her character was based on Brezling, her husband was from Lexington and would have known the reputation of the madame.  Another cool discovery? The person Melanie is named after, Sister Melanie, was a cousin to Mitchell... but was also a cousin to Doc Holliday, of Tombstone fame.  (Which just happens to be Wallace's favorite movie... "I'm your huckleberry.")  More info about this can be found at the following website, which may or may not be legit... but I'm planning on buying the book for sure!

4. God's handiwork is amazing... Arizona is so beautiful.  I mean, Kentucky is beautiful... but they are so very different.  How is it possible that He created all of this out of nothing? I am in amazement.  In a span of four or five hours, I saw desert, lush pines, cacti, the Red Rocks of Sedona, and The Grand Canyon.  Just awesome. 

5. Also, heat without humidity is not that bad.  When I visited, the temperatures were always over 100.  Y'all, that is hot.  And if it had been Kentucky hot... with humidity causing the sweat to run down your back... I don't know that I would have been able to stand it. But 105 without humidity felt like 85 at home.

6. And ice cream tastes the best when it is over 100 degrees outside.  Best ice cream I've had in a while... I know it's just hand scooped, but maybe it is mental.  The Sugar Bowl in Scottsdale, Arizona was great.  Featured in Bil Keane's Family Circus cartoons, it had a nice selection of ice creams, sundaes, and floats.  I stuck with my regular favorite, mint chocolate chip, and also tried a scoop of almond praline.  Both were excellent.  Family Circus was first published in 1960 and Bil Keane lived in Paradise Valley, Arizona (which apparently is a really upscale section of town... like you know you are well off when your lawn is Astroturf. Not that his lawn was Astroturf.  But while driving through the neighborhood on a tour bus, I noted that someone's yard was Astroturf.)

For more info on Family Circus (although I am sure you loved them, too!)

And here's my ice cream:
Worth.  Every.  Calorie. 
Linking up with Emily Freeman at Chatting at the Sky.  I love seeing what everyone has learned over the month! 


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