Before I made the decision to move to Fayetteville, NC, I made a mental list of the many things I would miss about my previous town–Covington, GA.
Now, for folks who grew up in Covington, a list like that may not be very long. We seem to be predisposed to hating the places where we grow up. Since I left the town where I grew up (a town I wasn’t fond of), I have lived in several places hated by the young people living there now–those born there.
At any rate, I’ve managed to love all of those hated places, and Covington was no different. I loved my job and the people and the bars and all of the stupid little quirks that made Covington what it was–like the fact that the town shut down several times a year for The Vampire Diaries to film.
One of the things that made the list of “What I Will Miss about Covington” was the East Side Trail–a 2.5 mile paved trail that wound its way through the woods, behind the library, and through Chimney Park. It was quiet and hilly and it was a great place to run and think about my book. I was worried there wouldn’t be anything comparable in Fayetteville.
But I was wrong.
Today I discovered Clark Park and the Cape Fear River Trail. Clark Park has about 1.5 miles of unpaved nature trails itself. Then, back across the railroad tracks, there is the 4 mile, paved river trail. It’s everything I was missing and more (there are dinosaurs!). It’s a bit of a drive from where I live (15 minutes), but it’s worth it.
Here are some shots from my adventure today:
This spot is tucked away pretty far off of the main road in the back of a residential neighborhood. It’s one of Fayetteville’s hidden gems. This is the part of moving to a new place that can often get lost in the anxiety–the exploration and the discovery. I’m starting to discover more and more of these hidden gems, and I’m starting to have a lot of fun with it, too.
I wonder–what does your town have that you love? What is your favorite hidden treasure?