Another Thursday, another chapter of Ashes to Asheville.
If you’re wondering what Ashes to Ashes is, you can’t go wrong by reading What Is “Ashes to Asheville”?
In this chapter, the story’s ninth (The Ex Calls), Tammy gets a call from her ex-husband, Ryan. It begins where Chapter 8 (HB2 and Barbecue) left off, which is with Tammy having run outside 12 Bones to bring back Donna. Alas, she’s too late.
“Darn curve in the road,” she says to Charlie.
If you’re standing in the 12 Bones parking lot, with the restaurant behind you, and look a bit to your right, you’ll see this:
So that’s the curve around which Donna drove before Tammy could wave her down. (Apparently a lot of accidents happen at that curve. My guess why is that drivers are always being so amazed by the major greenery that they keep crashing into each other.)
Tammy spends Chapter 9 talking to—well, listening to—Ryan, while standing in a spot overlooking the river. Here we have my wife, Cat, standing in that exact same spot Tammy does when she takes that call (and pretending to be speaking on a cell phone, too boot):
If Cat/Tammy turns slightly to her right, this will be her view of the French Broad River:
Towards the end of Chapter 9, Tammy sees a chain handing from a tree. Here is that chain:
Like Tammy, I have no idea what the chain leads to. It feels like a … Southern thing, like maybe it’s a crawdad trap, or … I dunno … a way to cool your beer. (Which I know is hardly a “Southern” thing, since, of course, rivers all over America are practically clogged with submerged six-packs of beer being cooled the way God intended them to be.) I just have no idea what that chain is. But I sure know a metaphor when it trips its way up my spine.
When Tammy turns back from the river to look at the restaurant, this is what she sees:
Except the red car’s not there. But in the story lots of other cars are in the lot, because in the story the restaurant isn’t closed, as it was when Cat and I went to 12 Bones last Saturday morning to take reference pictures for Ch. 9.
Since the restaurant was closed, I stuck my iPhone up against one of its windows, and got this long shot of it interior. It’s easy to imagine this place filled with customers who do what the customers in my story do, isn’t it?:
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