November 01, 2005

Part 1

I promised a bit more on the gatherin' this weekend. Where to start, where to start.

OK - the beginning. Driving.

First and foremost - T1G deserves some kind of award. Do you realize that poor man was stuck, for 12 hours each way, in a car, with me. Just me. Oh - I let him plan the music, but y'all realize how much I can talk?

And what probably isn't terribly evident unless you have actually traveled with me - I'm directionally challenged. Big Time. AND - yes it get's worse - I don't really pay attention to details all that well. I think I asked him at least a dozen times which highway to take off of 39.

T1G: 74
Tammi: I want 80 right?
T1G: noooo, you want 74.
Tammi: OK - 74.

10 mins later....

Tammi: Oh look, 80. I go east here, right?
T1G: nooooo, you want 74.
Tammi: Oh, that's right. 74

And on and on it went.

Did I mention I talk? A lot?

And just for the record - I had nothing to do with his bloody nose. Honest.

Anyway - we took off at 9:00pm Thursday. After just missing a deer it was pretty smooth driving. It only took about 12 hours. Just long enough to feel it, but not bad enough to suffer. But I can sure tell it's been a few months since I've made a haul like that.

Friday afternoon the gathering was beginning. Upon arriving at the SWG abode and greeting our handsome and charming host - the first blogger I met was Sir Jim. I knew him immediately, he has the best farookin' hair EVER. Seriously. And the great thing is - it's not his best feature. Imagine that. The best thing about Jim is..... Jim. He out and out rocks. Oh - and I will be working on learning lyrics. I can't think of anything I'd enjoy much more than singing along with you.

I started hauling stuff, cause you know I had to arrive with stuff, into the house. Out of the front door steps a beautiful young lady. I suddenly felt old and stuffy. Matronly as it were. It was Princess Cat. As with every other time I've meet a fellow blogger there was an instant comfort level. We puttered around in the kitchen and just chatted each other up. She is one impressivie woman. Smart and funny - as well as having the sweetest smile. It was a pleasure, pure and simple.

While we were standing outside on Erics FABULOUS deck three gentlemen appeared. Damn - I need to hang out on more decks. THAT'S where a girl needs to go to meet good men. Denny arrived, a more charming and very talented gent I've yet to meet. His way with stories is a gift. And his laugh. Oh sweet Lord, he has a marvelous laugh. It was a pleasure Sir. One I hope to repeat - soon. Then there was the dashing Zonker. A smile to light a room. And just about the most beautiful eyes I've seen on a man. Damn I didn't have the opportunity to spend as much time talking with him as I would have liked - but I also didn't want to fight my way through the crowd of women. Didn't seem dignified - and heaven knows I'm all about the dignity. And Redneck. Ahh Redneck. Funny, smart, sharp as a whip. And a damn good hugger - which is very important in my book.

Feeling a bit overwhelmed by all the good looking males hanging around I figured I'd head back into the kitchen. It's my comfort zone you see. Suddenly I look up and there she is. I knew her immediatly even having never met her face to face. Army Wife. A beautiful woman full of life and love and laughter. I could not hug her fast enough. As we puttered around in the kitchen it was like we had done it a thousand times before. It was comfortable, it was family.

Blackfive shows up and I just have to smile. Every Single Time I've had the pleasure of spending time around him it is just flat out wonderful. I could listen to this man talk for hours and hours and hours. I can't begin to tell you how honored I feel to call him friend.

Now it starts to get a bit fuzzy on who arrived when. I don't know if it was because I was trying to get dinner started or the very VERY strong drink I had consumed, but it's difficult to remember who I met next.

I know that Eric's cousin Brad showed up and he was a flat out hoot. Damn - he had me cracking up.

Johnny Oh finally got his butt over there. One of my favorite people in life I could hardly wait to see him again. I just adore him. Knowing I got to spend the better part of a weekend with him around was a real plus.

I do remember that Bou kept calling. I wanted her to stop calling and just get there. NOW. Finally, finally - I looked out the front window and saw her. I dashed out the front door and ran across the lawn. She had arrived. After about 4 really great hugs I turned to my beloved Sissy. I hope I didn't hurt her when I grabbed her. She had traveled so far, and I cannot begin to tell you how good it was to meet her. Bou introduced me to her gorgeous sister. Now normally I would be very self concious and actually shy meeting someone that smart I'd read her comments and heard stories from Bou and beautiful but I felt like I already knew her. Heck - the Bou and Morrigan family better watch out. I may be inviting myself to the next family gathering. Anyway - I didn't want to overwhelm her, as I've been wont to do, so I just smiled and warned her I'd be hugging later.

Dinner was consumed and a fire was started. I have to admit I was a bit chilled. OK - I guess trying to crawl into the fire bowl was a bit of a signal, but I really thought I was getting used to the cold weather.

Sitting there with my eyes closed I could hear the stories, the laughter. It was just wonderful. Think about it for a second. Folks from all over the country, together in the mountains of Tennessee. Sharing a laugh, a drink, and a bit of themselves. That is pretty flippin' cool.

more to come.....

Posted by Tammi at November 1, 2005 06:25 AM

I REALLY needed this trip, yeah I guess it was obvious I don't get out much.

Yeah walking in Memphis sounds like great fun darling.

Posted by: armywifetoddlermom at November 1, 2005 07:14 AM

Oh man, you guys have to tell me the next time you do this. I so wanna come, if I am invited!! I love everyone on that list!

Posted by: oddybobo at November 1, 2005 08:46 AM

Ummm, your weather pixie's looking a little, shall we say, hoochie-ish. What's with the spandex and boots??


Posted by: Carmen at November 1, 2005 10:23 AM

Tammi, I keep going from blog to blog, just craving more to read about what must have been such an incredible weekend! YOU! Keep writing!!

Posted by: Marty at November 1, 2005 10:27 AM

weather pixie, yep very Emma Peel today.

Posted by: armywifetoddlermom at November 1, 2005 11:46 AM

Let's see. I called when we left. I think. And then we called from Ed's World of Concrete. Then, wait... I think I called when Mo and Sissy insisted on taking a cat nap right after we checked into the hotel, while I was too strung out wanting to see y'all, so I walked to Piggly Wiggly and got some fruit.

And then I arrived. I think. Or did I call when I saw that frickin' hysterical black sign for that funeral home... maybe I called Eric on that one when I was trying to figure out where the f*** we were... when we were following YOU. I think the conversation went like this:

"Eric. Does Tammi know where the hell she's going? Oh and that rival funeral home needs to start advertising." And then we ended up at a car lot at a dealership because... Tammi has directional issues we were not aware of!

LOL! Good times. Brings a smile to my face!

Posted by: Bou at November 1, 2005 12:21 PM

.. it still seems like a blur... talk about a busy and bustling house!.. but I wouldn't have missed a single minute of it...

Posted by: Eric at November 1, 2005 01:41 PM

"Folks from all over the country, together in the mountains of Tennessee. Sharing a laugh, a drink, and a bit of themselves. That is pretty flippin' cool."

Damned straight.

Posted by: Jim - PRS at November 2, 2005 12:54 AM

I want to join YOUR club!

I feel like such a "little" blogger. You guys are the heavy hitters. Hopefully one day I'll be able to meet a few of you myself.

I would feel like Wayne and Garth - "I'm not worthy!"
But a girl can dream, right?

Posted by: allicadem at November 2, 2005 07:35 PM

You can hug me anytime! It was really nice to put the face and incredibly talk figure with the name. I'd heard so much about you and it was a well overdue meeting.

Posted by: Morrigan at November 5, 2005 08:30 AM