What I Did on Summer Vacation

        We were off all week on summer vacation, and it was an overdue break.  I guess you might think this is gonna be like one of those dang newsletter Christmas Cards where I tell you all about how I snorkeled in the Caribbean and mingled amongst the dolphins and the rich and famous.  I ain’t making fun and there’s not a thing wrong with that, but I guess y’all know me well enough by now to know that’s not my ticket.  By the way, I missed all my patients and my blog pals too, so it’s good to be back, but we did have fun.

        I guess our vacations would bore you as much as those cookie cutter Christmas cards, but we thought it was special.  My watch battery went dead Tuesday and I didn’t bother to replace it.  Ain’t no point to time how long to float around in a mountain lake on an old inner tube or see how often the bass break the water’s surface.  And I sure warn’t gonna set an alarm clock to tell me when to get up, but I have been an early riser so long you can’t break the habit in just a week.

        I got in one round of golf in with my boy, and my reign as family champion is about over.  When some kid hits a ball 330, and knocks it by you fifty yards your inclination would be to break his ankles, but when he’s your own, you can’t help but bust with pride.  I turned to the man who we were paired with after his first drive and said, “That’s my boy.”  I will brag and tell you I barely squeaked by him for the round, but my day in the sun is about over.  Don’t matter, I’m gonna play golf with the boy as long as he’ll have me.

        I was on assignment for part of the week, but I wouldn’t call it work.  The Laurel Magazine Editor Paul Howey wanted me to to check out Helm’s Barber Shop in Hendersonville, N.C.  This is a bluegrass barber shop where they jam every Thursday morning.  Everyone sits in a big circle for a jam session while folks get their haircut.  As you can imagine, I was a pig in mud.  The write-up will be in the September issue of the Laurel Magazine.  (They are on my blogroll)  Mr. Howey took pictures and everything, so y’all check it out.  By the way, is you read the Laurel tell Mr. Howey you visited them ’cause of Tommy Bibey.  He’ll be making staff decisions at the end of the year and I don’t want to be a line item in the budget if I can help it.

        On Saturday night, we got lucky.  David Grisman was at the Orange Peel in Asheville.  For those of y’all who don’t know, Gris is a master mandolinist who has been around a year or two now.  His style is more of an acoustic bluegrass jazz fusion nowadays, but last night was his bluegrass experience.  His group is well worth the listen and at times is a bluegrass history lesson.  Here is a bluegrass trivia question for you.  My guess is the English Professor will get this right, but y’all let me know if you got the correct answer.  Remember, we are on the honor system, but if you get the question right I’ll give you a Tom Bibey mandolin pick next time I run into you.

        Q:  Who was the banjo picker David Grisman became friends with in California as a teenager?

        A:  Jerry Garcia, who went on to play guitar with the Grateful Dead.  Before Garcia ever invented Dead-heads and neckties, he was a very fine five string banjo picker.  After he was famous, he collaborated with Grisman on the classic bluegrass project, “Old and in the Way.”

        Well, into a phone booth and jump out as a doctor.  Gotta go to work in the morning.  I hope everyone got thru the week O.K.  Like one of professors said, “Son, don’t take too much time away- they’ll figure out they didn’t need you.”  I can’t have that, ’cause I need all of them them too bad, so I better hustle back to the office and try to look important.

Dr. B

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8 Comments on “What I Did on Summer Vacation”

  1. pandemonic Says:

    Sounds like you had a great time, Dr. B. Vacation is good for the soul. I wish I could get my husband to subscribe to that idea. Would you mind calling him for me? 🙂

    I know what you mean about your kids exceeding you in their endeavors. I have a couple of kids like that myself. And I also know about bursting with pride too.

  2. newt221 Says:

    I missed you! But, glad you had a good time. Ashville/Hendersonville is a neat place. I worked at Ridgecrest in Black Mountain one summer when I was in college.

    We used to go to this one place and jump off the Blue Ridge Parkway. It was really neat. The overpass had a ledge under it. So, when we jumped, it looked real to those who had never done it before.

    I guess that is why I like my back deck so much. It looks out over a gully that has a creek. It gives you an idea of being in the mountains.

    Hope you got out to see the stars in the sky and hear the wildlife in the woods.

    And, I love your statement of a “pig in mud”. Makes me think of home!

  3. Ted Lehmann Says:

    Why’d ya give the answer. I had my hand up, waving around, and I was saying, “Uh, Uh, Uh…call on me,” but you had to tell everyone. Old and In the Way, the biggest selling bluegrass album ever. Glad you had a good vacation. Now back to the grindstone, You have a book to write. – Ted

  4. drtombibey Says:


    I’m afraid I am as guilty as your hubby. It has taken a long time for my wife to convince me I should take more than five days a year, but she is right- I am getting to the age where I need to.

    Dr. B

  5. drtombibey Says:

    Ms. Cindy,

    My son went to Western. He fell in love with the mountains and stayed. I think if we took every vacation there the rest of my life it’d be O.K. with me.

    Dr. B

  6. drtombibey Says:


    This blog is on the honor system, and I’m sure you did know, so when I get my Tom Bibey mandolin picks, I’m gonna give you the first one.

    Your last thought was exactly what my agent said- “BACK TO WORK!”

    Dr. B

  7. Kelly Says:

    Sounds like you vacationed in our neck of the woods – Western North Carolina. I hope you enjoyed it! I write a blog all about Asheville and the surrounding area, so if you are interested in coming back to see us please check it out! I also work for an Asheville vacation rental company called Carolina Mornings – another tidbit in case you are interested in visiting again and need a place to stay! 🙂 I liked your trivia, never would have thought Garcia!! Take care and happy blogging!


  8. drtombibey Says:


    Yep, we were in Asheville- great vacation spot. They don’t call N.C. variety vacation land for nothing.

    Will have to visit carolinamornings- what a great name- makes me relax just to think of it.

    I understand Tiger is building a golf course somewhere around Asheville. It will probably be out of my league price-wise, but I bet it’ll be a good one.

    Dr. B

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