Monday, July 6, 2015

Pine Mountain Mini Vacation

Almost two weeks ago we loaded up in our SUV and headed out to pick up Eddie's sister and mama to go on an adventure. James started running a fever mid-afternoon and felt very puny. I dosed him up with some ibuprofen and we continued with our plans. By the time we arrived at Eddie's mama's house my car was smoking and had to be put into the shop. Some people would've thrown in the towel. Are we those people? NO. Well, I may be. Eddie isn't. If we hadn't already bought our tickets James and I would have stayed at HOME. He was miserable. However, there was fun to be had so we had it!

We arrived in Columbus at supper time and ate at TGIFriday's. And that's where I thought we had lost our minds. Will was acting like a nut, it was dark and cold in the restaurant, a storm was BLOWING through (we even saw power lines snapped in half later!), and James' fever spiked causing him to feel TERRIBLE, but he had sworn off medicine. We ate our supper and left again, taking a detour through Krispy Kreme on our way to Pine Mountain to our hotel. James fell asleep on the way to the hotel and woke feeling a little better.

The hotel was interesting. It got great reviews online and was nice and clean, but when we arrived at 9:30pm they were closed and left our key taped to the door of the office. That was  a first! We had originally decided to go without Eddie and at the last minute he came and we booked a second hotel room. We'd planned to just squeeze James, Will, Mrs. Bobby, Kelly, and myself into what they called a "Queen Supreme" room that slept 4. WELL. When we arrived and got our room keys and went to our rooms we walked into the Queen Supreme room to find a queen and a TWIN. Can you even imagine?! We were so glad we had that second room. Mrs. Bobby complained, but in small letters at the bottom of the page it said what the room ACTUALLY had. Just be aware if you stay at the Pine Mountain Inn anytime soon!

James stayed with Eddie and me and we had a little midnight snack since he was feeling better. We would've fed him anything just to get him to eat! I am looking ROUGH here - it was almost midnight and it had been a LONG day - but I'm posting it for the memories.

Our whole trip was centered around Wild Animal Safari in Pine Mountain - a drive-through zoo! There is a hilarious story that I've grown up hearing about my dad and some of his brothers driving through the Zoo Atlanta when they were young. Zoo Atlanta has never been a drive-through zoo...even in the 60s. I was glad to be legally driving through this zoo. {Does that make you laugh, too? Can you just see it? I can just imagine them pulling into a service vehicle entrance and starting down near where the sea lions and bears used to be! LOL!!!!}

We were up bright and early so that we could head to Wild Animal Safari first thing! We'd read online that you could rent a vehicle to drive through the safari and we wanted to do that and didn't want to risk not being able to get one when we got there so that's why we went over the night before. We arrived in plenty of time and waited and watched the animals through the fence.

{See the giraffe in the picture above? Look straight at the middle of the picture and you can see his legs in the trees.}

When it opened we went in and bought food to feed the animals and rented a niiiiiiice van. HA! The lady said that first thing in the morning the animals are HUNGRY and we found that to be absolutely true.

Like our fancy ride? This is a necessity and WELL worth the money if you go. Not just because of the potential of a head-butting from animals, but they are MUDDY and will drip slobber all over. AND your own car doesn't have bars on the windows - this kept the animals at a friendly distance.

It took us a little over an hour to drive through the whole thing. Eddie didn't get in a hurry so you could probably do it a good bit faster. 
We mastered tossing the food into the animals mouths. Did you SEE some of their tongues?
You cannot hand-feed anything that looks like a horse or a bird, but everything else is fair game. You can toss food into the open mouths of the zebras, emus, and zedonks (zebra + donkey!). They are all GREEDY.

After you finish the drive-through part, they have a walk-through part as well. It also took about an hour. It isn't huge, but there was a lot to see.

{Please note the open mouths in all of these animal pictures. Because that's what they looked like on the safari! Feed me! Feed me!}

They have a LIGER! It's a lion/tiger hybrid. It stands 12 FEET on its hind legs!!!! The sign said that ligers were thought to be sterile like mules, but that they'd had females ligers to have babies before. I thought that was interesting!

Overall, we loved it! We highly recommend that you go first thing in the morning - especially in the summer when it gets HOT. By the time we finished it was blazing, we were thirsty, and James was feeling bad again.

We left and headed to the nearest Chick-Fil-A for some lunch and then hit the road again. On our way home I made the executive decision that we were making a pit stop at Georgia's Little Grand Canyon - Providence Canyon. {Mostly so that we could mark "state park" off of our summer list!} It developed in the 1800s as a result of poor farming practices that led to MASSIVE erosion. I'd been as a child but it has been years and years and years. I don't think Eddie or Mrs. Bobby had ever been. Again, just a tip - go in the fall when it's not blazing hot! There is a ton to see if you hike down into the canyon, but I want to do that with tennis shoes on when it isn't snake season!

This was such a fun two-day trip! We had a great time! Mrs. Bobby planned a fun outing and we enjoyed it! I was so thankful that our driver/navigator/child-toter/extra-hotel-room-booker came along with us. It was easier with Eddie.

As for James? We headed to the doctor FIRST THING the morning after we returned and got his diagnosis - Strep. :( He was pitiful, but he was quite the trooper with us as we dragged him all over the state! He's feeling much better now!

1 comment:

Meggie said...

I am laughing so hard at your pictures! Because I've been there twice and those animals are determined to put their entire heads in the car! They are greedy!! Haha! Glad James is feeling better. =)