carolina in my mind

Yesterday afternoon, I had a dentist appointment in Gainesville, and afterwards, stopped by my parent’s house. Less than five minutes after my dad walked through the door, he went into an extra bedroom and began to play “Carolina In My Mind” on the guitar. He had no idea I was listening in the hallway, but nostalgia took over as I thought back to those days when we were kids and my dad played songs, and even made up songs, for us.

When I was younger, I wanted to get as far away from Gainesville as possible, but now, I realize just how much I love coming home. Part of it’s my parents, and part of it’s the small-town feel of Gainesville, at least in comparison to Atlanta.

In Gainesville, you don’t worry about rush-hour traffic, smog or child abduction notices on digital road signs. Instead, you see greenery, blue skies, familiar faces and, at most, four-lane highways.

The older I get, the more I appreciate the homegrown tomatoes and okra, the homemade muscadine jelly and biscuits and the home-brewed wine.

My parents lead a priviledged life–not because of what they have, but because of what they gave up to raise us in a small town.

So in my mind I’m goin’ to Carolina. Can’t you see the sunshine. Can’t you feel the moonshine.

Gainesville Grilled Salmon
For dinner, we had grilled salmon, steamed broccoli and grilled corn on the cob.

For the salmon, my mom just doused with fresh lemon juice.

Then she sprinkled on Old Bay seasoning.

And lastly, she spread on a layer of pesto.

While my mom and I worked up an appetite walking the neighborhood (yes! I wore my pedometer), my dad was busy getting the grill started with this contraption.

We enjoyed good food, along with a bottle of Melvino’s Pinot Grigio. My dad has also gotten a few of his friends to hop on the home-brewing train! The wine was excellent, though my all-time favorite home-brewed selection is still my dad’s muscadine wine.