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Day 1
Dashing Away

Day 2
Up & Down, Up & Down

Day 3
Misty for Me

Day 4
Christmas Day

Day 5
Civil War & Dixie Highway

Day 6
Mostly Coke

Day 7
DH for Sure and Maybe

Day 8
Connector Completed

Day 9
A Pair of Carolina Capitals

Day 10
A Raleigh Big Show

Day 11
Cloudy Lookout

Day 12
Mounds, Moths, & Bridges

Postlude - January 3, 2013
The twelve day trip, with a very quiet Christmas and a not very quiet New Year's Eve, was definitely a good one. Besides covering the holidays and keeping me away from Ohio's first snow of the winter, it allowed me to drive the Dixie Highway's Rome Loop and Georgia Connector. The updated score is here.

January 2, 2013 (day 12)
I crossed the Kanawha River four times on three bridges and the Ohio River once. I stopped by to see Mothman then took a look at Bob's farm and a snow covered Mound City.

January 1, 2013 (day 11)
I went 0 for 2 at the Snappy Lunch and 0 for 1 at the Big Walker Lookout but found a really old coffee pot and a really big pencil.

December 31, 2012 (day 10)
New Year's Eve in Raleigh, North Carolina, and I got to see the big acorn drop. I also heard some good music, ate some good food, watched bunches of flashing lights, and toasted the GMT start of 2013.

December 30, 2012 (day 9)
First Columbia then Raleigh. Those Carolina capitals are everywhere. I found a three screen drive-in, Dizzy's hometown, and some tasty BBQ.

December 29, 2012 (day 8)
I finished up the Georgia Connector then headed to Augusta. One of two attempted museum visits was successful plus I downed a 'burger basket at a drive-in.

December 28, 2012 (day 7)
I left Atlanta on the Dixie Highway Georgia Connector and definitely drove most of the old alignment to Milledgeville. I skipped the bit underwater, however, and am not even sure I found it.

December 27, 2012 (day 6)
I spent a good portion of the day at The World of Coca-Cola then strolled around Olympic Park. Dinner was at a cafe diner.

December 26, 2012 (day 5)
I revisited another battlefield and drove a little Dixie Highway. The day ended with food and drink at an excellent Atlanta brew pub.

December 25, 2012 (day 4)
It was another gray day but I managed to walk around Coolidge Park without getting wet. The day ended with a nice buffet aboard the Queen.

December 24, 2012 (day 3)
The day was damp and misty so I went grocery shopping and celebrated the fact that I didn't wait until today to go to Point Park.

December 23, 2012 (day 2)
I drove up Lookout Mountain, rode the Incline down and back then drove down to my room on the river. Shrimp & grits at Aretha's and a little time in the Texas Lounge filled out the day.

December 22, 2012 (day 1)
Once I got to Tennessee, I splashed gas on my car, hit every bar in town, and turned down a free beer.

Prelude - December 12, 2012
A familiar thing happened on the way to Atlanta. Actually, it was during the planning of a trip to Atlanta. The city had entered my mind as a good candidate for my Christmas Escape Run because it is far enough south to probably be warm, big enough that there should be some life there over Christmas, and a place I haven't been for a long time. I could, of course, simply scoot straight down I-75 as I've done in decades gone by but where's the fun in that? I'd at least have to work in a stop in Knoxville or Chattanooga. Or maybe I should reach Atlanta from the east through Charlotte, NC. Memories of a scenic drive south from Charleston, WV, several years back had me looking at that seriously. As I scouted the web for Atlanta Christmas time activities, I also had thoughts of working in some of the Dixie Highway that I've yet to drive in the area.

I wasn't coming up with anything particularly inviting activity wise and the various routing possibilities were swirling when an email arrived. My earlier thoughts of Chattanooga had naturally included thoughts of the Delta Queen. I stayed there over Christmas two years ago and a scan of the prelude post for last year's Christmas Escape Run reminded me that I thought of staying there again. There was talk of a possible sale and relocation during my 2010 stay and, while those talks fell through, there have been others. Most recently the talk was of a possible move to New Smyrna Beach, FL. Once there, planned modifications would have ended the admittedly dim hopes of returning her to cruising and it was feared that the salt air might do even worse damage. The email that arrived as I pondered was one announcing the abandonment of those plans. With plans for a Christmas Day in Atlanta not exactly jelling and the email reminder of an idle Christmas Day that I had enjoyed, I decided to go for the repeat.

I'll be spending Christmas Eve and Day on the Delta Queen in Chattanooga, TN. I'll be getting there mostly on I-75 with a little time on US-25. I'll next spend a little time in Atlanta with some Dixie Highway both before and after. I will pass through Charleston on the way home but not Charlotte. Ever since I noticed that big acorn in the park in Raleigh, NC, back in 2005, I've been intrigued by the New Year's Eve acorn drop. It looks as if things will work out just right for seeing it myself this year.

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