An Awesome Adventure Awaits

With the help of 6 fabulous people, I started my 2020 Alphabet Travel Plan today. (If I capitalize the letters, it looks more formal, right?)

The plan is pretty simple: Take 26 microtrips this year. Each must be focused on a letter of the alphabet in order. Each must involve a stop for bourbon.

Everything today took place in Charlotte – we’re starting small on the travel part of things. But the results were huge!

First stop: Abugida

We started with Ethiopian food at Abugida. Central Avenue deserves more fanfare because the whole world is represented here! From the parking lot at Abugida, I could see Chinese, Vietnamese, Mexican, and Salvadoran restaurants. I could also see a reptile store called Cold Blooded and Bizarre. So, yeah, Central Ave is eclectic, a nice word for weird.

Wait, don’t judge yet.
James and Becky, intrepid food explorers. They’re like the Columbus and de Gama of food.

I didn’t know whether I’d like Ethiopian food. Shoot, I wasn’t even sure Ethiopians like Ethiopian food because they’re the skinniest people I’ve seen.

Doro wat and beef tibs

Folks, this stuff is slap-yo-momma good! I had doro wat, which is a braised chicken leg in a sauce of about a thousand exotic spices. It’s served with something called injera. If a pancake and a pita had a baby, a very squishy, absorbent baby, it would be an injera.

There are no utensils so you scoop into the awesomeness with your fingers and the spongy pita thing and cram it into your mouth. So, so good!

A word from our sponsor

I’m going to interrupt myself here to tell you all that I have the coolest bunch of friends on the planet. When they found out about alphabet travel, they were enthusiastic and ready to go. When you want to try something new in your life, they are the kind of people you need around you.

So to Laura, Diane, Becky, James, Ric, and Lu, thanks for your spontaneity and your willingness to do something new! You were the perfect people to help me kick off this weird idea!

Back to our story. Second stop: Angel’s Envy

Alphabet Travel has very few rules but one rule requires bourbon. So we went to Whiskey Warehouse where I had Angel’s Envy and James had some scotch that started with an A.

Liquid courage for stop #3

Third stop: Axe throwing!

I have a long history of hurling sharp objects, thanks to the questionable introduction of Jarts into my childhood. Throwing axes? Bring it on.

Laura’s axe-throwing form was perfect! The steel-toed boots, not so much. Hahaha!
I love this picture because 1) Lu is throwing her whole body into it; and 2) you can see the raccoon that loomed over the afternoon.

I, my friends, am a one-hit wonder, the A-ha of axe throwing.

I killed it in warmups. I was a natural.

But then the competition started and I choked like a Carolina Panther in mid-season.

Two bullseyes

James was amazing. Or maybe he goes axe throwing all the time and just didn’t tell us. Bullseye, bullseye, bullseye, yawn. 😀


I love this photo. These folks didn’t know each other before today but when people have a sense of adventure and a willingness to try new things, friendships form quickly. This picture will be my reminder that there’s so much more to this life than work and routine.

Last stop: Amelie’s

If you don’t live in Charlotte you should just move here. We have Amelie’s, a French bakery that makes amazingness. Any day that ends with macarons and tarts is a good day!

Up next: B

Next weekend my cousin Laura, aka the Brilliant Cousin, is joining me on a day in south Charlotte and the upstate of South Carolina Carolina that will involve bourbon, barbecue, and bluegrass.

Come on, you knew those would be the Bs, didn’t you?

If you want to tag along, let me know!