Spring has sprung and I am done has been my mantra for the last couple of weeks. How can anyone be productive when it is sunny and seventy out? Not cold to be uncomfortable and not hot enough to look like a drowned rat standing outside in the hot Georgia summer heat in summer for more than ten seconds. I have my adventure ju ju back and I am hoping to capture my little adventures in Atlanta into word as I get my little groove on for a new season in life.
My series of fun began with a stroll at the Castleberry Hill Art Stroll with my roommate and a friend of hers. The Castleberry has been on my agenda for a time since a professor had mentioned it in an art class I had been taking a year or so ago. Castleberry Hill is a community in the midst of revitilization. It is on the federal historic landmark due to the businesses in that area being used during the civil war era for cotton, terra cotta, and grocers. Many the buildings in the area are a mix of modern business/loft buildings and converted buildings circa the 1900s or earlier into the same. If you walk into to some of the older buildings, it reminds you of some of the historic buildings in Savannah where the old bricks are exposed and used as the inside walls and contrasted with the rich solid wood floors that are a gem in the box of lost treasures from yester year.
What I appreciate most about Castleberry is its desire to reach out to the artists in the community and give them the opportunity to display their tangible expression to the community. I am a pretty quirky and I love how artists can take random materials, such as gears, and use them as tree leaves on a metallic tree they had crafted or a simple photograph of what it looks like going down I-75 in a car in a rainstorm, or the the protest of evil dictatorships in South America through a oil on canvas. I will be the first to admit, I am not big on genitalia painting “art”, or as I fondly call it, PTA (you figure it out) art. There is definitely expression there, but I will save that for another blog and after a few drinks.
The walk was capped off with dinner at No Mas Cantina. Another little sub-adventure within itself. Great food in a restaurant brimmed in array of colorful paintings, lights, and wooden structures. I didn’t have any margaritas here, munched or a serious size plate of steak nachos. I enjoyed some wine at a wine tasting at Wine Shoe earlier. I am still not a conneseiour or wine yet. I appreciate the art, love learning about it, but at this point my education about is whether I like it or not. I digress. I did get my palm read, yes Madame Butterfly (that is her name) and yes she had set up shop in the restaurant. I am thankful to say that I know I won’t grow into a lonely old lady with nineteen cats as my companions.
The next day was a completely different adventure into Oakland Cemetery. Georgia. I was kindly invited by some new peeps to check it out for a project. Getting back to the adventure. I had been to Oakland before because I am a history nut and at the time I went, I about froze my tooty off.
Oakland is full of lives that shaped Atlanta and the substory of how the Victorians lived (yes you can find this out in Oakland too). Victorians view of cemeteries was much different from ours today. During this time, the trend was to bury loved ones in more public places, instead of in the church yard or on the family farm. Many came to Oakland to picnic and spend time with the long departed loved one in a physical and metaphorical sense. Life was short, hard, and much appreciated the time on earth they had. Many did not name their children until after age 1, which is why you see so many children’s graves with just the name Baby “Smith” or what ever their last monniker was. On a lighter note, many citizens came to the cemetery just to see the artwork on the mausoleums or gravestones. Keep in mind their was no Castleberry as it is now or High. You have to find culture somewhere….A non-Victorian, but a famed golfer, Bobby Jones has a plot there. A lawyer by trade and a famous golfer by night. Many golfer wannabees lay golf balls on his grave to hopefully improve their game. Uhm, I think they will have better luck tossing salt over their shoulder.
Anyway, after all the shennanigans there, we capped it off at Six Feet Under pub/restaurant across the way. I had not been there before, and really did not know what to expect. I do have to say the beer battered fish and the homemade chips were quite tasty. The four of us sat on the rooftop overlooking the cemetery….how interesting/romantic/festive/find your word to insert here. It is really a cool place built of solid wood inside and old beer cans lining the rafters of the place.
It is easy to get caught up in the hum drum of every day life, take the time and act like a ‘tourist’. It is rich with history, culture, and fun. Adventure is not found in the most obvious spots most of the time, but that is the beauty of it. Open a few back doors and find those outlets. If you get tired, stop and have a beer along the way. See you on my next adventure.