Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Memorial Day weekend happenings...

This weekend we didn't want to sit around stressing waiting for test results (which still haven't come yet) so we did some exploring.  We thought it might be a good time to search for the temple so we would know how long it took to get there.  So off to Raleigh we headed.  After all, it is the Raleigh Temple, right?  Not so fast.  All the way to Raleigh I am trying to get Glenda (GPS) to find the temple.  I put in every name imaginable but no directions would pop up.  By the time I decided that Glenda must be anti-Mormon, we found a chapel with people there cleaning.  Come to find out we had passed it already and in reality the temple is located in Apex.  Yep, that was back a ways so we abandoned that idea for the moment and went looking for the Capitol.  We found some places that looked interesting but ended up at the North Carolina Museum of History.  We only had time to go through one large exhibit--so we can go back again. :)

Rheid getting friendly with a display in The Story of North Carolina. This exhibit
teaches you about the earliest inhabitants down to modern times.

On our way back home, we successfully located the temple.  It is pretty but very small and one where you must make an appointment.

The grounds crew were working there getting things
ready for opening after an update/cleaning break. The
project foreman took our picture.
Monday, after ridding Rheid of his first and hopefully last tick (in between his fingers), we headed on an hour and a half drive northwest to Surry County.  My Jackson roots can be traced back to Surry and Stokes counties.  I never dreamed I would be able to visit the area one day. We didn't have a ton of time since I had IV's to run but with the heat, it was just about all I could do anyway.  Our exploring began in Mount Airy, the hometown of Andy Griffith and inspiration for Mayberry.  You can see the Snappy Lunch, Bluebird Diner, Floyd's Barber Shop and for a mere 35 dollars you can catch a ride/tour in Sheriff Andy's squad car.  There appeared to be some fun shops but we were on a cemetery mission!

I was out in the sun all afternoon and my legs are still as white
as they were for this picture. 

After eating a Barney Burger at Barney's Cafe we headed off to a couple of cemeteries to see who we could find.  We found a bunch of ancestors but only a couple of the ones I was looking specifically for.  I took tons of pictures to document dates, sweat off about 5 pounds, and hung an IV drip from a holly tree branch.  If anyone rolled over in their graves because I was doing drugs in their cemetery, I missed it.  :)  We need to return again to find more graves since we only hit two places in Surry.  I will be better prepared next time with a pen, clipboard, and hopefully cooler weather.  I will be back!

Waiting for my Barney burger and Brown Sugar Pie.

I was surprised that we were all alone in the cemeteries--one was even the largest in town.  Come on people, it was Memorial Day.  I had grand visions of meeting long lost relatives at grave sites, hugging and maybe even a few tears would be shed, and them inviting me to their home where I would find a treasure trove of  obscure genealogical information.  Dream on Sherri.  There were very few decorations either which was kinda sad.  We had a fun time anway.  I miss Mayberry.

One of the monuments we found.  Notice the lack of
decorations anywhere around it--a beautiful resting place.


  1. I might be wrong about this, but I kind of think visiting cemeteries on Memorial Day is much more a Western thing. Until I got married, I had always heard of Memorial Day as strictly for remembering dead veterans, not all your ancestors. It was very strange to me that my in-laws visit all their ancestors' graves on that day! So I think it's kind of a cultural thing.

  2. Yes, I agree. Decorating cemeteries is a western U.S. idea. Cemeteries in the south are usually very old and are kept by the locals, which are usually kin of the deceased. That is also why it is so much cheaper to bury someone in the south. The west cemeteries are kept by a paid business and they are kind enough to help decorate for Memorial Day, and not just the veterans. We attended the service at Robert's cemetery last year and it was very beautiful and moving. It was a BIG to-do.