There are times when you need a respite from the urban world. We took a day trip to the Blue Ridge mountains for a drive along the scenic parkway recently to do just that. Packing a picnic lunch of fried chicken, biscuits, potato salad and pickled beets, we enjoyed our meal at Craggy Gardens along the way. While the leaves were not as brilliant as they are in this photo by Vali S. who shares his work on pexels.com, they were starting to turn vivid golds and reds - like patchwork quilts. The drive to Black Mountain is about 3 hours and we spent about an hour on the parkway. There was quite a bit of road work on US 40 E coming home so the entire day was a real road trip, but well worth it. My regret is I didn't get any apples!