In the spirit of spending more time together as a family, we’ve decided that Saturdays are for exploring. We’re turning off computers, cell phones and TVs in favor of scouting out local festivals and hiking trails. This past Saturday was our first adventure and we decided to start things off with the Scottish Festival in nearby Franklin, NC. We’re fortunate that our little town is less than 20 miles from Franklin, Bryson City, Cherokee and Waynesville (and just over 40 miles from Asheville) so we have a ton of opportunities around us each and every week.
Franklin is a lovely town with a vintage feel that is common to this area. The buildings on Main Street haven’t changed much in the last 100 years and the signs probably haven’t been upgraded in the last 50.
Like all of western North Carolina, everywhere you look, you’ll have a view of the Smokey or Blue Ridge Mountains. Even after two years here, I still breathe a sigh of contentment upon glimpsing the mountainous skyline.
Back in the 1700s, Scots emigrated to this area in droves. The Highlanders in particular had the hearty constitution to brave the wilderness and the mountains reminded them somewhat of home. The largest Clan gathering in the world is near Boone, North Carolina and Franklin is home to the Scottish Tartans Museum.
The Festival started with a parade, introducing the Clans that were in attendance.
They marched with their dogs big…
There was music abound…
…and plenty of men in kilts.
Of course, Lexi missed all of it…
but who can blame her? She had a nice spot in the shade and it was a beautiful, breezy day.
As I stood there and watched the crowds showing their pride in their homeland (however many generations removed), it made me homesick for Greece. This is only the second year in the last decade that I haven’t spent part of my summer there and the absence of my annual trip is like a wound in my side. I know that we will be headed back next year (as a family of four!), but in the meantime, I’m going to drown myself in olives and feta cheese and pretend that I’m sitting on the balcony enjoying the sunset.