Recently I took a trip to the beautifully bucolic, Asheville, North Carolina. I was staying with a friend in Raleigh and traveling around the state to search for potential places to relocate. In the past, my memory of traveling to Asheville was at night, either in complete darkness or during a rain storm, white knuckling the winding, uphill roads that lead there. This time it was a bit different; while still experiencing the travel at night and somewhat white knuckles, I did it with my friend Jen, so we could talk through it together and used Air B&B to find a place to crash for the night. The following day spent in Asheville, we experienced the River Arts District and saw some exceptional arts & crafts, walked a bit around downtown and stopped at a few local watering holes with too many great craft beer selections to mention here, and crashed locally upon the kindness of strangers, before heading back to Raleigh. At the crack of dawn, when the first signs of light began to appear, we climbed the hilly paths and started the next part of our journey home. This time however, the mountains seemed welcoming, even though we were leaving. They enveloped our path home and we were guided by the most amazing, hazy morning sun rise, as if we were following the sun home. This small 6" x 6" encaustic piece titled 'Heartland' is a momento of that trip.