Coming Round The Mountain


They drove up the mountain in Carl’s beat-up four-wheel extended cab truck. Grandpa sat up front with Carl. Morgan, who had also come along, squeezed between Marleigh and Cord in the backseat. The road was unpaved and deeply rutted, and they all bumped and banged from side to side as the off-road vehicle climbed the rugged trail.

Marleigh was glad Morgan was sitting between her and Cord. She could just imagine how awful it would be having Cord’s muscular frame bumping and banging against her all the way up the mountain.

It would be horrible, just dreadful. Bumping and banging….

Marleigh stared blindly out the side window at the trees bouncing by, trying to get the ridiculously delectable image of Cord’s awesome body grinding against her own out of her startlingly lascivious mind……

Excerpt from Weekend Engagement in which my characters take a ride up into the mountains to tour the heroine’s family history. Much of the history in that book is my family’s history, but it was much less romantic yesterday when we bumped and banged up the mountain. My husband and my dad were up front, and I was in the back with three kids, not a hot guy, but here are the highlights.

When I was a kid, this cabin was habitable and we went up in the summers and stayed a week. We played in the river–skipping rocks and swinging on grapevines, and we also bathed in the river. There was an outhouse out back and there were always mice scurrying under the beds at night, but it was fun.

The cabin is completely rundown now. I can remember my mother baking biscuits in this kitchen, though it’s hard to imagine now.

My great-great-grandfather hid horses from the Confederate army down here in this hollow behind the cabin when the soldiers came through, plundering for food and stealing all the horses. From where my kids are sitting, that’s a sheer drop off.

This is the house my dad lived in. Someone still lives there and farms the same 140 acres my great-grandfather farmed back then. He’s a real nice man and always welcomes us in and lets us run around on the farm when we visit.

We drove up into the upper meadows and walked around for awhile. The man who lives there now has some cattle up there, and a real territorial bull, as we found out. We hiked down to the river from there to get to a little waterfall and swimming hole he played in as a boy. I canNOT believe my dad did that and I was scared to death he was going to fall–it was SO steep, but the 80-year-old man could NOT BE STOPPED and since he was going we all had to go after him. This bull came to the top of the cliff and started bellowing. I thought we were all going to be gored to death. Getting back to the Explorer was like something out of Jurassic Park trying to escape the crazy dinosaurs…. And NO, I didn’t get a picture of the bull, unfortunately. I was too busy running for my life.

The Pocatalico River.

Great-great-grandfather’s house–someone still lives there now.

Don’t all family history trips end up with photographs at the cemetery? Or are we just weird?


  1. Mary says:

    I have to say I do not have one picture of me or my family in a cemetery. Maybe that’s our problem.:wall:

  2. Mechele Armstrong says:

    My family doesn’t do cemetaries. My sisters and I have yet to visit my Mother’s grave. We get it from my Dad I think. He hated them with a passion. I think we are the wierd ones though.

    I love these pictures and the stories. Thanks for sharing this Suzanne. I’m really enjoying it.

  3. Eve says:

    You mean you wouldn’t risk your life to get us a wonderful picture of the bull? This is the stuff we live for.LOL
    Wonderful pictures Suzanne – I’m a sucker of old historic homes and cemetaries. And I think I really need to find a copy of “Weekend Engagement”:yes:

  4. Peggie says:

    I must be weird too Suzanne. I love graveyards and drag my kids through them all the time. So much history in a graveyard.

  5. Estella Kissell says:

    Your family history is very interesting—and a lot can be learned from visiting old cemeteries.:yes:

  6. Jill says:

    Nope, we don’t have any pictures of us in a cemetary, lol! But love your stories!

  7. MartyK says:

    Yeppers, all about the cemetery, lol. Of course, the most morbid part is seeing your parents names on the stones–and they’re standing right beside you. Mine have to have theirs redone. Apparently they didn’t believe they’d make it to the twenty-first century…:rolleyes:

  8. Tori says:

    Well, if your family is weird, so is mine. :rofl: I’ve got LOTS of cemetery pictures. Though not al of them have people in them. Some are just tombstones. ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. Melissa Mc says:

    I’ve got cemetery pictures, but none with the family. The kids have never been to one yet.

  10. Carol Burnside says:

    Oh gosh, yes. The annual trek to So. Tx. when I was a kid always involved Decoration Day at the cemetery and a huge dinner on the grounds next to the little white country church. Lots of pinching cheeks, wiping sweat and drinking Cool-Aid.

  11. Carol Burnside says:

    P.S. You’re kids look VERY excited about all this. :rotfl: I remember that feeling, too.

  12. Melissa Marsh says:

    Suzanne, I absolutely love to read all these stories about your family. Of course, I’m a history geek, but family history is always so darn fascinating. Story ideas galore!!! I especially liked the story about hiding the horses from the Confederates. Did you have any relatives fight in the Civil War?

  13. Desperate Writer says:

    We are always exploring cemeteries!

  14. Michelle says:

    I love the pictures and the stories! You make me feel like I’m there with you. ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. Eve says:

    Decoration Day – I actually know what that is.
    On the wall next to the flag we received at dad’s funeral are framed pictures of my dad’s tombstone and then the section he’s buried in – Military cemetaries are so beautiful.

  16. Toni Anderson says:

    Lovely photos and beautiful looking places.

    I always end up visiting the cemetary and saying Hi to the relatives when I go home. When I was a child I’d go with my granny and her sister to tend her family’s graves. Now we go visit them ๐Ÿ˜•

  17. Ashley says:

    Too cool seeing the family history. Thanks for sharing!

  18. kacey says:

    what a cool trip. (not sure your kids feel that way though). Cool pictures. And yes, I have cemetary photos. We’re supposed to, right???

  19. Amy K. says:

    The only family history trips I’ve taken are TO the cemetary. It must be really cool to know so much about your family’s history!

  20. Katie S says:

    Lovely post! Its great to read your descriptions and then see the accompanying pics as well! ๐Ÿ˜€
    I don’t have any pictures of me in the graveyard but I do remember being dragged through quite a few when my Dad was tracing our family tree!

  21. Margery Scott says:

    Can’t say I have one cemetery picture. I am so enjoying your photos and stories of this trip, Suzanne.