Wednesday, December 7, 2011

#46 Visit the Biltmore

46. Visit the Biltmore in Asheville, NC

This past Saturday I got to check #46 off my list. I decided it would be a fun Christmas present to give my boyfriend, and it would be equally fun to turn it into a double date with his roommate who is dating a friend of ours from church.

The house was terrific and we had a wonderful day! Unfortunately, I got sick a few days before we went to visit the Biltmore so I was feeling rather crummy that whole day. Nonetheless! Let me tell you a pretty darn good story!

The tickets to go to the Biltmore are way more expensive than what they should be. Thus being the case, I searched around online to see if any fellow travelers/tourists had any tips. Some smarty said to check on Craigslist and see if anybody in the area had posted some tickets for sale. Sure enough, I found a lady who was selling six tickets at a very good price. She was going to email me a picture of the tickets and I was going to send her a check via snail mail and she was going to send me the tickets via equally slow snail mail. She hadn't send me the email with the picture of the tickets by the end of the week, so I got nervous and called her. Well, my nervousness turned out to be a good thing, because when I called, she said that she had already sold the tickets to someone else! I was really upset because had spent a couple of hours online trying to find tickets and finally found this six-pack. Anyways, I returned to square one of searching on Craigslist. I found someone who had five tickets for sale at a cheaper price than the ones Lady-Who-Sold-Our-First-Set was offering hers for. Lady #2 is named Leah and turned out to be quite the character.

Leah works at a bar in Asheville and I didnt even want to know how she had acquired these special tickets that were good for two years. They turned out to be employee comp tickets and the four of us all made up stories as to how we thought she wound up with these tickets. Anyways... Leah and I made an agreement that I would pick up the tickets from her when we came over to Asheville (where she lives/works). I was extremely nervous about this arrangement because if something went wrong, then we would already be 2 hours away from school with no tickets and no date ahead of us! Well, we did get the tickets, but not from Leah, but from Rich. (I know...stick with me).

Leah told me the address of the bar she worked at and said that she would leave the tickets with Rich (one of her co-workers) and we could just give him the lumpsum of cash. We would just trade off, and that would be that--we would have our tickets and go on our merry way and Leah would have an envelope of cash waiting for her when she came into work later that evening. Before we left on Saturday morning, I googled the address and found directions online to the bar. I also google searched the name of the bar so we would be able to spot it from the road (and also so I knew that there actually was a legit bar at the address she had given me). We drive for two hours, get to Asheville, and I spot the sign for the bar (called Westville Pub). We dont bother to double check the address of the bar, because I thought it corresponded with the information I had looked up online. Well, we walk into the bar (mind you; this is at 11am...) and its not quite open. We ask the bartender in the back if she knows Leah and if Rich is working. She said she didnt know either one of them! (*Begin panic attack here*) She asks an other co-worker who says he knows Leah who works across the street as the bartender at University Pub. (*Inhale big sigh of relief*) It turns out that the name of the bar and the address of the bar didnt correspond like google said they did. We simply showed up at (what I thought was the right NAME of the bar, but) the wrong address. So, we mosey our way to the second bar for that morning, and sure enough Rich is standing behind the counter, gives me the envelope, we give him the money and head to the Biltmore!

Ahh mission accomplished! I just think its comical that we had to go through this whole ordeal all for the sake of saving (quite a few) bucks. Its very appropriate because my sister Amanda and I encounter these types of wild and heart-rate-raising adventures all the time. Nonetheless! We got a fantastic deal out of it and there is no way we would have been able to afford going if the tickets were full price.

When we arrived, we walked around the indoor botanical gardens (greenhouses! yay for warmth!). After that we went into the mansion and walked around/took the self-guided tour for several hours. We really enjoyed ourselves and I would definitely recommend going to visit to anyone! (Just...dont pay full price when you can get them for cheaper online.)

Date completed: December 3rd, 2011

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