Joy Riding in Leicester

I have lived here in Leicester, North Carolina for 7 years now and in that time I have yet to become dulled or bored by joy riding throughout our gorgeous country side. It’s as though our winding switchbacks have magical doorways that appear and reappear in different ways leading me down exciting new roads to discover each time I set out. Wild Turkeys in the road
Bison on the side of the road

My day trips through the serpentine shaped streets often surprise me with sights of meandering renegade buffalo and wild turkeys wandering around aimlessly, taking up all the road space they so desire. I get to witness beautiful hawks sweeping down into close view with a snake in talon. We even have a neighborhood peacock. Yes, a stunning peacock just randomly hanging out on the side of the road, showing off its feathers as people drive by.

The melding of the turquoise skies and the forest green landscape after a nice rain create colours so brilliant and so vibrant that it imprints itself forever in my mind.  Our sunsets simultaneously still and stir my spirit gifting me the awareness that I am forever rooted here no matter where I end up in my life.

Many travelers are rightfully drawn to the monumental views of the Blue Ridge Parkway but I have found that I get equal views on the back roads of Leicester with the welcomed addition of charm. The charming touches of our quaint little town are indeed boundless.peacock

We have adorable cobble stone cottages and archetypal colonial style farmhouses from the 1800s that still thrive in these parts. Nearly every oncoming vehicle pleasantly waves as you pass each other by which is not only a country tradition but also small town hospitality at its best. People are so very friendly around here and usually eager to lend a helping hand.

Tail gate markets by way of curb side pop up all around too. The one time I found my self a bit lost and hungry from taking one too many coin toss turns, I was lucky enough to drive by a tail gater with loads of watermelons in the back of his truck. I had no money but he chopped up some of that sweet juicy melon for me anyway and helped guide me back to a main road. His name was Charlie and it was the best watermelon I have ever tasted.

All of these sights and countless more have shaped my experience and perception of Leicester. These stories are what make it my home. A home which I will always love and always come back to.

Written by Kate Randall

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