We arrived at the Dixie Stampede really early, so we looked at the horses for the show, looked around the gift shop, and paid for our tickets (the show was sold out!) before waiting in line. After the doors opened (and the line was already packed!), we got into a really nice conversation with a group behind us about these lines and the lines at Disneyworld. However, I've never been to Disneyworld, although I live just a state away. "You need to go," she told me. Come to think of it, it's even more interesting that I've never been since my grandparents lived in Florida for a long time when I was younger; we would go there for Thanksgiving every year. I even learned to ride a bike and had chickenpox there. I digress, though.
The line seemed to move so slowly because there were photographers taking pictures of each group; later we would have a chance to buy these (we didn't buy any). We entered the carriage room for the preshow entertainment, bought drinks (I bought orange sherbet mix), and sat down in the balcony for a better view. At first I was wondering how the horses were going to come in the room, but Ashley (who had been there before) told me that the actual show wasn't in the room. That would explain a bit.
Anyway, after the preshow entertainment, which featured a southern bluegrass-esque (wait a minute; isn't that redundant?) band, we headed into the arena, where the actual show and dinner were being held. Our seats were in the front row; however, there were no bad seats in the arena. And then it began.
We were divided, North versus South. Yes, this is basically what it sounds like. The Dixie Stampede was basically a competition to settle some issues between the north and the south; that is, the American Civil War. (I told you I lived in the south.) It wasn't exactly a re-enactment, though, although real re-enactments do exist. These issues were settled by a series of competitions such as horse racing, horseshoe tossing, ostrich racing (this one was particularly amusing), and--lest I forget--a few audience members riding on stick horses.
We also had dinner during all this, which wasn't bad except for one thing: We had to eat the entire meal with our fingers. There was one catch: It wasn't a meal one would normally eat with just fingers. I'm a messy eater even with silverware, so this was just like the Medieval Times dinner in Dallas at FBLA nationals. (Good trip, too.)
After the show, we got some of the cast members to sign our boot-shaped mugs, and then we started the trip back to Ringgold. As we passed Knoxville, I noticed all the pretty lights, and I realized something. I'm homesick. Home is where the heart is, after all. I think I left mine in Atlanta. I miss Atlanta more than I missed Ringgold when I was there (although that doesn't say much--actually, that doesn't say anything).
We also sang Disney songs on the way back, including "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious". I remembered in third grade when I sang that song for the first time. I decided to learn to spell that word, and I did. After mastering that word, my classmates would ask me to spell it, and they would find bigger and more difficult words for me as an attempt to find something that I couldn't spell. Trust me; such words do exist, as I never made it to the national spelling bee (it's on Thursday, by the way). I still have my old spelling bee books; I'll have to look through them sometime.
Right before we got off the
Weird, we thought. We kept going down the road and planned to stop at Wal-mart for gas (where there are also several gas stations within a mile). All the rest of the lights were on--street lights, lights in people's houses. The last stoplight before reaching my house, though, wasn't on. It wasn't even blinking. Even odder, the Conoco gas station next to it looked deserted. Not even emergency lights were on. Keep in mind that this is a Saturday night, a time when gas stations are typically open. Hmm.
So we went to Wal-mart, got gas, split the price three ways, and went to my house to drop me off. As we passed Grandmother's house, we saw tree limbs in her backyard on the ground. Right before we reached my house, we saw a tree on the other side of the fence that had fallen on the wire fence. What was going on?
I asked Mum about it when I entered the house (it was almost 11pm by then, and I was tired). She told me about the storm around 8pm. Apparently it was really bad, and it knocked over a tree on the next road, which would explain the blackout at Conoco. Hmm. Then I took my medicine, wrote this entry, and went to bed. That was Saturday.