Drive from Midland in rain, which slows traffic through Charlotte and beyond, but, by Shelby, sun and clouds make hilly roads great viewing spots.
Head into Forest City, and, though Farm Museum is closed, get a chance to wander “historic” downtown. A very long mural just off Main Street captures this town’s self-perception, but it’s vision doesn’t include a lot of closed, empty shops. Down Mill Street, an empty parking lot suggests its main employer is now long gone.
Manage to get off on a wrong road, but, it turns into a plus, as, passing by Lake Lure, am treated to a series of gorgeous old spas/resorts (before gambling casinos captured our culture, resorts were THE place to vacation). On a long, winding, hilly, forested road, am rarely able to exceed 40 mph, but beauty rewards my “turtle” speed. Suspect “Bat Cave” has no relationship to “Bruce Wayne”, but, it’s a real village.
Get back on US-64, and, in Hendersonville, aim for 7th Avenue Historic District. Obviously, my aim is lousy, as crowds of homeless congregate near an old train depot awaiting “meal time” in a huge “mission”. Fortunately, this highway is loaded with our familiar cultural icons (Arby’s; McDonalds; Pizza Hut; Lowes; Wal-Mart; etc.), so know safety secure. (And, I cannot tell a lie… am always intrigued by puns, and found this sign clever).