Day Two of #VANLIFE takes us from our goat farm overnight in Lee, Florida to a northern suburb of Atlanta, Georgia. Here, we spent five days house sitting two beautiful cats in a modern row house. We had a great time, and by the end of our first day, fell right back into our old routines again.
The U.S. state of Georgia is located in the American South and borders Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, Tennessee, Alabama, the Gulf of Mexico AND the Atlantic Ocean. It was one a Confederate state during the United States’ Civil War and was one of the last states to return to the Union when the war was over. Now, Georgia is known as the Peach State and is the eighth most populous state, with about 10.5 million residents. Visitors flock to Georgia to visit its historical monuments, film settings (The Walking Dead is filmed here), and the bustling urban hub of Atlanta.
Atlanta is the capital city of Georgia, with a population of six million people. It played a major role in the American civil rights movement, being the birth place of Dr. Martin Luther King. The city is playfully called “the city in a forest”, and for good reason. We were amazed by the amount of greenery found interwoven among the tall buildings and suburban neighborhoods. We didn’t get the chance to explore much of Atlanta, but wished we had. There are so many fun and free things to do in Atlanta!
This time around, we stayed in a North Atlanta suburb called Brookhaven. We were in a gated apartment complex with a pool and fitness center. Nearby are a couple of lively new urban developments, a Whole Foods (our weird style of proof that it is a trendy neighborhood), and a university with some European-style architecture. The complex is only a block or two from a main road that connects us to downtown and some trendy shopping areas.
Our home is a one bedroom, one bath apartment. Other apartments of similar size in the community were renting for $2,000 USD per month. There is also a garage, living room, patio, kitchen, dining room, laundry room, and small office. I love the look and feel of this place. The design and decor is modern, simple, and comfortable; if I were the one decorating, this is how I would have done it. Needless to say, we felt right at home here.
We got a chance to meet the owner of the home only briefly, but felt an immediate connection. She is about our age and has similar interests. She is having us watch her home while she flies out to Florida to look for a new home on the beach. It looks like she might be moving into a place fairly close to Mom’s house, so I hope we will have a chance to meet her again later this year.
Our fur babies for the week are two Siamese cats. Huey, the older of the two, is clearly the boss of the house. He does what he wants, gets pets when he wants, and sleeps where he wants. We connected pretty quickly and really enjoyed each other’s company. Leo is a bit stand-offish. He spent a lot of his time sitting in the same room as us, but at the opposite end, where he could sit and stare at us with a look of confusion and disapproval. Although he never got out of this habit completely, he did eventually warm up to us (Josh specifically). He is very playful and full of energy.
We set up our work stations on the couch and at the dining room table, and set about reestablishing our routines. I wrote and optimized two blogs, took part in several social media campaigns, and made housing reservations for a full month out. Josh started a new social media push, published a couple of stories, and made some progress on his novel. It has been a really good work week.
- Josh’s new vampire publication: “The Exanthropist”
- Josh’s literary tourism article written for Open: Journal of Arts and Letters
- Follow Josh (i.e. J Brandon Lowry) on Twitter
For fun, we took a walk through one of the urban developments and the nearby college, tried some new recipes, caught up on the new season of Orange is the New Black, and spent some time relaxing by the pool with a book. I am currently reading Last Chance to See by Douglas Adams (Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy) and zoologist Mark Carwardine. It is a true story of the time the two men traveled the world to check out some endangered animals. I’m really enjoying it so far.
We did manage to set aside some time for one big adventure in Atlanta: the Georgia Aquarium. I bought our tickets online, which saved quite a bit of money, but we still paid $59 USD, well over our daily budget. However, it was totally worth it! Up until 2012, the Georgia Aquarium was the largest in the world, and they’re in the process of installing a new addition. My favorite exhibit was Ocean Voyager, which is the aquarium’s most famous exhibit. It houses a 6.3 million gallon tank (23.9 million liters) filled with thousands of creatures, including four whale sharks! I have never seen anything like it. It was a truly amazing experience I will never forget.
We both agreed that Atlanta was pretty awesome. Unfortunately, we didn’t see nearly enough of it, so I’m hoping we get to come back and explore again soon. Until then, we are off to Nashville for our next house sit and more #VANLIFE adventures!
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