Friday, December 21, 2012

December 22, 2012: Georgia on my mind...

What a great day, December 22, 2012. Three days until Christmas, the last shopping Saturday before Christmas and I am finally over my stinking virus. All of this means that the family and I are hitting the road to the Huntington Mall to do the last bit of Christmas shopping. We had planned to do this Thursday but the virus cancelled that, along with last night’s Christmas party, which has now been rescheduled for next Friday. We also learned that my nephew Troy has a particularly nasty bug that will keep him out of commission for the next few days, which reschedules Christmas with Mom and my brother. Hey, hang loose, take it as it comes and just remember, NBD. (Read the blog from November 20, 2012 for an explanation of NBD, it’s not only a good way to approach Walt Disney World but also a pretty good way to live life.)

By the way, speaking of earlier blogs, go to yesterday’s blog, December 21, 2012 and read my Christmas story, “Bright Winter Solstice.” Remember, God’s word will find a way and the Truth is the Truth even if no one believes it.


First, Chef Mickey’s opened in the Contemporary Resort on this date in 1995. We ate at Chef Mickey’s for the first time in 2006 and we have eaten there every trip since, five times total. We love riding the monorail to the Contemporary, disembarking in the Grand Canyon area and moving through the resort to Chef Mickey’s. The food is buffet style, so everyone can get what they want and the fab five are there, coming around to your table to spend time with you and your family. Celebrate a birthday, celebrate an anniversary, celebrate a first trip to Walt Disney World, celebrate at Chef Mickey’s and hundreds celebrate with you. Hey, you’ve got to eat, have fun!!!

When we go to WDW, we usually drive. We have geocached on the way to the World, we like to spend a day in Savannah, Georgia, one of our favorite towns, and we love to get an evening at the beach before driving over to WDW the next day. Driving means that we pass through the state of Georgia (see Savannah above) and in 1696 James Oglethorpe, the colonizer of Georgia was born. Oglethorpe established Georgia as an alternative to debtor’s prison, Oglethorpe wanted a place for the “worthy poor” of England to have a way to get their footing. Few “worthy poor” ever moved to Georgia but, in 1732, Oglethorpe arrived in South Carolina and settled near present day Savannah, Georgia (see Savannah above). Celebrate James Oglethorpe by stopping for a visit in Georgia on your way to WDW (see Savannah above). Did I mention that we really like Savannah, Georgia? Oh, eat at Corleone’s.

When you go through Georgia, notice that you will see signs that mention, “Georgia On My Mind.” On this date in 1899, Hoagy Carmichael, who wrote “Georgia On My Mind,” was born in Bloomington, Indiana. Carmichael also wrote: “Stardust,” “Heart and Soul,” “The Nearness of You,” and dozens of other songs. What I remember about Hoagy Carmichael is his inclusion in The Guinness Book of World Records. When I was a kid, Hoagy’s song, "I'm a Cranky Old Yank in a Clanky Old Tank on the Streets of Yokohama with my Honolulu Mama Doin' Those Beat-o, Beat-o Flat-On-My-Seat-o, Hirohito Blues," was listed in the Guinness Book as the longest song title. To make this a legitimate Disney excuse, Hoagy recorded an album titled,”Havin’ A Party,” which included a track titled, “Walt Disney’s Song Parade.” How do you get cooler than that? Don’t forget to visit Georgia on you way to WDW, may I suggest Savannah and eat at Corleone’s. Can you believe that I am not being paid to say these things?

For country music fans, Frontierland offers a number of ways to honor Country music and notable Country musicians. I used to live in Huntington, WV and we still live close by, and on this date in 1921, Hawkshaw Hawkins was born in Huntington, WV. Hawkshaw started out on local radio stations in the Huntington, WV / Ashland, KY area, playing a guitar he acquired by trading five trapped rabbits. From humble beginnings, he advanced to the top of the music charts but only reached number 1 after his death, which may be what most country music fans remember about Hawkins. Hawkshaw died in the 1963 plane crash that also took the lives of Cowboy Copas and Patsy Cline. Hawkshaw’s song, “Lonesome 7-7203,” reached #1 on the Billboard charts for four weeks and was on the charts for 25 weeks after his death. How about lunch at Pecos Bill’s in memory of Hawkshaw Hawkins, Cowboy Copas and Patsy Cline? Amen.

Remember, your best excuse is always: Waiting for your dreams to come true.

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