My mother used to say that February wasn’t good for anything but reading a good long book. I’ve adopted her philosophy with a twist. February isn’t good for anything but reading a good long book on a beach.
PB and I headed south for a couple weeks and came home when February was just about over. We enjoyed sunny skies and warm sand in our toes. We saw some sights and spent time with some lovely people along the way.
Our last stop was Mount Airy, North Carolina, the hometown of Andy Griffith, and the inspiration for the fictional town of Mayberry.
During the early days of the pandemic, everybody had an opinion they were happy to share. Those in a leadership position of any kind during that time know how stressful it was to maintain peace and harmony. In the midst of chaos and criticism, uncertainty and unpleasantness, PB and I escaped to Mayberry every night after supper.
A half hour with Andy, Barney, Aunt Bee and Goober lowered our blood pressure. We laughed a little, we learned a lesson, and we whistled the theme song. For a few moments, we harkened back to our own childhoods (like Opie’s) in small towns (like Mayberry). The TV show provided a sacred thirty minutes of simple joy and warm community, things that were sadly lacking in the world at the time.
When we made plans to take off this February and visit family in North Carolina, it was a no-brainer. PB booked a night in Andy Griffith’s boyhood home and one of the kids set us up with a ride in Barney’s squad car. We went to the Andy Griffith Museum, had lunch at Snappy Diner, and stopped in at Floyd’s Barbershop. We sat in the sheriff’s chair at the courthouse and bought a souvenir at Wally’s service station. It was a walk back in time.
Watching the Andy Griffith Show
(even if you’ve seen all 249 episodes)
while sitting in Andy’s living room
would make you smile, too.