Brian A. Boyd has a way with words.
The hiking enthusiast penned a book several years ago detailing various waterfalls in North Georgia and nearby areas. His compilation - dubbed Waterfalls of the Southern Appalachians & Great Smokey Mountains - is filled with photos, descriptions and hiking guides for each spot.
I spent a recent day hiking one of his waterfalls - Glen Falls, which is located just off the main road between Highlands, N.C., and Dillard, Ga. It's really a pretty hike, with several spots along the way where you can stop and take pictures.
Or take a breather.
It's obvious I'm not a big hiker. I get winded just driving a couple of miles.
But I thought I could handle Glen Falls.
Turns out - to quote comedian Ron White - I was wrong.
Mr. Boyd describes the mile-long trail that drops 700 vertical feet as, ahem, "lung-busting."
Of course, I found his book after I thought I was going to bust my lung, heart, calves and other various body parts on the way back up the trail. (Strangely enough, going down the falls wasn't a big deal. Gravity was a son-of-a-gun on the way back up.)
The books did provide a few bright spots - it helped lead us to Minnehaha Falls, one of the prettiest off-the-beaten-path spots in North Georgia. (In fact, a group of groomsmen was gathering there for pictures as we were leaving.)
But here's the biggest problem: Apparently, acquiescing to a couple of hiking trips has only encouraged my wife to make me walk more.
It's exercising, she says.
Lungs be darned.
Thursday night started what hopefully will be a new tradition for some members of the local media. It was WTHO News Director Donna Branch's idea: Why not gather for a cookout of sorts before the annual fireworks at Raysville? So several families from The Mirror, along with Thomson resident Brett Buffington from WJBF-Channel 6, took Donna up on the offer and gathered to eat chicken wings and enjoy the fireworks from one of the beaches at Amity campground. (One notable absence was my Mirror cohort Billy Hobbs, who spent part of the evening in the emergency room of McDuffie Regional Medical Center after a pit bull bite. He's better now, but had a long evening last Thursday.)
Meanwhile, please take a moment to laugh in memory of Larry Harmon. The man behind the make-up of Bozo the Clown died last week. While he was not the original Bozo, Mr. Harmon made the character a household name. He took the "Bozo brand" nationwide, training other Bozos at television stations across America.
His success was rooted in his belief of what Bozo represented.
"Bozo is a combination of the wonderful wisdom of the adult and the childlike ways in all of us," Harmon once told the Associated Press.