Sunday, April 21, 2013

Back on the road...

We're at the bottom, Sam - Chattanooga,
Jeanette & Dennis -Nashville,Clarke & Elaine -
West VA, & Maria & Brian - St. Louis
Both Bill and I agree that it feels a bit odd to be moving again. We're out of sync with all of our usual prepping but it doesn't take long to get back into the groove. One of my favorite things to do is use my FindFriends app on my iPhone. I have a few of our good friends and full-timers on it and I can open up the app and there will be a little purple dot where each of them are.

I noticed that Sam and Tracy were in Chattanooga, TN, right on our path north. I posted the screen shot of my app and got a quick response from Sam saying that we should join him where he was parked at the Camping World with full-hook-ups for super cheap. So after a quick night in a Walmart, Saturday night, we arrived in Chattanooga only to find they were running a membership special and if you renewed your Good Sam membership a few months early they would discount the membership fee $5 AND give you two free nights of camping. We used the first night right then and there - SCORE!

A nice pull-thru spot at Walmart.
Sam was also heading up to Nashville, Tracy (his wife) and gone up to visit family ahead of Sam's arrival, but we were happy to find our good friend on the road and share the evening. We drove up to Nashville the next day to stay in the full hook-up spot at the fairgrounds which is fairly close to downtown. Dennis and Jeanette had been in the area for awhile and Jeanette's mom, Lynn, had been visiting for the past week. We were thrilled to see our friends and meet Lynn. The last time we saw J&D was in Rhode Island, sometime in June, I think.

We thought we might be able to catch a show at the Bluebird Cafe that night as it was first come, first in, but the place was already packed with a very long line by the time we all got there so instead we roamed around trying to find a place where "we" could eat. We ended up at Pei Wei which we probably won't go to again, but it worked.

We walked back to the Bluebird, where our cars were parked, and the original line had shrunk a bit but was filling up for the next act over an hour later. We were beat so we headed home to hang out in the parking lot as NuRVers do best!

Tuesday Jeanette, Bill and I headed out to the Nashville Farmer's market. This is a semi-permanent market that is open 7 days a week with a flea market on the weekends. I would love to be here on the weekend sometime. We found a lot of good vegies and ate lunch in their international food court - I opted for Mediterranean and Jeanette and Bill had Caribbean. Just out the back of the building is Centennial Park, a 132 acre park with a 1 mile walking trail. There are historical monuments and a full-size replica of the Parthenon that we didn't get to see "this visit."
Just a few of our yummy vegies!

Bill worked on the rig most of the afternoon, washing half of it. Sam strolled over in the afternoon to inquire about "happy hour" and one by one we moved out into the parking lot to enjoy the waning afternoon sunshine, our cocktails and each others company. Dennis had been feeling poorly for the last few days - wasn't sure if it was allergies or a cold but he was definitely down for the count. I headed inside around 9 and Bill, Sam and Jeanette spent the evening discussing the universe. Jeanette posted the following day that their travels have become far more about the people they see along the road than the sites they see - Bill and I have to agree - even from the very beginning our travels have all been about family and friends - old and new.

Wednesday Bill finished washing Bebe and Jeanette and I went and did some shopping, she took me to a few of her favorite spots but mostly it was about Trader Joes and Whole Foods! That evening we met up with Bill's friend, Rod and his wife Kathy. Rod came to see us in Cedar Key on his motorcycle trip earlier in the year and we went out for a great meal in the college area where they live.

Thursday night we had tickets for the Ryman Theater with Dennis and Jeanette. The Ryman is the original Grand Ole Opry and I really wanted to see a show here as opposed to the new GOO which is housed in a big mall. First we headed out to East Nashville to check out some of their vintage stores, like Old Made Good, the Fat Bottom Brewery and dinner at The Wild Cow - a vegetarian/vegan restaurant where we could have anything on the menu!
Fat Bottom Brewery

Check out the pic on the right for the real pic!
We saw the Opry Country Classics at the Ryman who featured The Charlie Daniels Band and let me tell you, at 76 he doesn't show any sign of slowing down! It was a real variety show like they had in the 60's & 70's with an emcee who had that deep "radio voice" - very reminiscent of the Hee Haw days. Afterward we hung out downtown and stopped in a few bars to listen to music. It reminded us a lot of Austin and the music scene there.
The Ryman aka the original Grand Ole Opry.
That night a big storm blew in and the high temps were dropping 30 degrees. By morning things had calmed down enough for us to drive and we bid our friends goodbye and headed for St. Louis.

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