For the last week, I have been off the grid in the picturesque mountains of North Carolina, in the Morganton area, for anyone familiar with North Carolina. Morganton is about two hours from my usual stomping grounds in Cullowhee, but equally as beautiful.

I was there with a good chunk of my mom’s family, and we had a mostly great time. There were three cabins, eleven people and one dog. There was minor bickering, as usual when you stuff all of us into each other’s personal space, but overall the trip was really fun. We did a bunch of hiking, where I took lots of photos (of course!), and swam in several really cold streams/waterfalls.

Anyway, you’re probably wondering about the title of this blog post, as it’s unlikely that I actually witnessed the birth of a bald eagle, nor is it a scientific post about the history of the bald eagle species. This post is about my Uncle Ed.

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Uncle Ed, is and has been for as long as I can remember, bald. He is married to my mother’s oldest sister, and they were the people who brought my sister and I on the trip, though we stayed in a cabin with my other aunt.  Uncle Ed is a generally cheerful person, and takes teasing incredibly well.

Because there were so many of us, whenever we left the campground, we had a set of walkie-talkies that allowed us to separate into groups and still be in contact with the other group of people. However, we kept getting interference from other people’s walkie-talkies, so we decided to call my uncle ‘Bald Eagle’ and kept calling him such on the walkie-talkie.

The group of teenagers ended up finishing the Table Rock trail far before the group of adults did, so we kept trying to get them on the walkie-talkie so we could tell them we were already at the car. We kept using the code names, trying to reach them, but apparently we didn’t get through to them, but then we hear laughing from across the parking lot. Some other hikers thought that we were hilarious, calling for the Bald Eagle on our walkie-talkies, so they asked us who we were trying to reach, and we told them ‘our bald uncle’. Well, they started up the trail, ran into my uncle (who didn’t know about the code name yet) and said, “Oh my god, are you the Bald Eagle?”

It was a hoot, and now all of my family members who were on the trip have nicknames. Being ginger, mine was of course ‘The Witch’. I can’t wait to share the photos with you guys over the next few weeks. I took a lot of pictures, and I hope you’ll enjoy them!

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