We were driving down the interstate, and came upon one eighteen-wheeler towing another one, which was backwards and therefore facing us, which was a tad disconcerting.

"Fred, make a face like you’re afraid the eighteen-wheeler’s going to hit us!" The great thing about all the weight Fred has lost, is that he’s more than willing to pose for pictures. In fact, you almost have to wrestle him to the ground to get him OUT of the picture sometimes.

Fred the grinnin’ fool in his brand-spankin-new t-shirt. On the front is a picture of him 155 pounds ago. The text (in red) reads "This was me" on the top, and "Before…" on the bottom. On the back is his url. He claimed to feel all self-conscious when wearing this t-shirt, but he must not have been too terribly self-conscious, since he wore it whenever possible.

We saw a lot of infomercials while we were on vacation – most of them while we were waiting around for the stores on the strip to open – and one that caught our fancy was for some sort of monitoring device for the elderly (think "I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!"), and on this infomercial, there was an elderly gentleman clutching his chest and yelling "I’m having a heart attack!" It amused us a lot, and Fred promptly began reenacting the commercial. This is his "I’m having a heart attack!" look.

The spud slept in a murphy bed, which was cool.

The view from our motel parking lot. I didn’t get many scenery pictures this time out, mostly because we didn’t go driving in the mountains where the scenery is prettiest, and also because I didn’t feel like lugging the camera around with me wherever we went.

Fred had his caricature done, and I think they certainly captured him well. The spud also had hers done, and while it doesn’t look as much like her as Fred’s looks like him, it was pretty good. I need to take a picture of it, which I haven’t done yet.

Isn’t this the most adorable little church? It was located between our parking lot and a mini-mall. I doubt that more than 5 people could have fit in this church, but since I wasn’t around Sunday morning at 8:30, I can’t say for sure.

A close-up of the sign announcing that the pastor of the "Little Country Church" is Ronald Reagan.

Another shot from our parking lot. Fred told me 300 separate times on this trip that the reason they call ’em the Smoky Mountains is because the fog looks like smoke. He tells me that very same thing every time we go to Gatlinburg.

As we were leaving Gatlinburg this morning, I took a shot of the gray, drab, rainy day. It was gray, drab, and rainy the entire time we were there, except for about 10 minutes on Saturday afternoon.

Things that sucked about our vacation: We had to walk down a big-ass hill from our hotel room to the strip of junky tourist stores on the strip. Which wasn’t so much a problem, except that Fred felt the need to do a LOT of walking, and insisted until sometime Sunday afternoon that I had to be with him every time he went into town, and the only way to get BACK to the hotel room was to walk UP said big-ass hill, which was lots and lots of fun. Or not.

Also, the moseying, meandering tourists wandering about the streets of Gatlinburg made me want to go on a killing rampage. THEY WALKED SO FUCKING SLOW. I’d walk patiently along behind one group who would meander along, taking up the entire sidewalk, until there was the smallest of gaps, through which I would shoot, almost running, get past THAT meandering group, and immediately get stuck behind ANOTHER meandering group.

How slow were they? Well, try taking 5 minutes to walk 20 feet, and perhaps you’ll begin to feel my pain. Oh, and imagine that there are annoying people in front of you, who gasp and ooh over every crappy Gatlinburg t-shirt they see. And who stop in their tracks to gaze lovingly at each and every store o’ crap they happen across – and there are many, many stores o’ crap in Gatlinburg, which is why we like it so.

But the people. Man, the people have GOT. TO. GO.

Tomorrow, I’ll take pictures of all the stuff I bought whilst in Gatlinburg, if you’re lucky. —–