Enough Already, Paula Sue
03.10.2014 - 13.10.2014
Okay, it is not entirely my cup of tea - but, I think I was entitled to one week of bad mood after six months on the road.
But because everyone from Tennessee is struck with disrespect for me when I say negative things about their state, I must provide an update with just a wee bit of the good stuff.
Here in Eastern Tennessee you can find:
Turkeys in your front yard every morning after they have flown from the trees across the road where they nest. That is, if you are fortunate enough to cat sit for BH and Tomboy at Karen's very nice hillside home.
By the way, Karen has written me a very eloquent email about the beauty and benefits of Eastern Tennessee. I have asked her to post it as a comment on this blog. She is going to see if she can figure out how to do it.
Rolling hills and craggy mountains.
The Wheatlands Plantation that is being lovingly and historically restored by a very knowledgeable and friendly couple transplanted fro W, DC,
Deer everywhere .
Quilt patterns painted on buildings. These are similar to "brands," but put on the barns, stores, and signs instead of the rumps of cattle. I was not able to pull over and get a photo of one on a barn, but this example shows a store front.
Downtown Knoxville with some great sculpture and a wonderful East Tennessee History museum.
(Forgive me, but I must say that one of the posh, cutting edge restaurants had Italian food that tasted like it was cooked south of the Ohio. Now, stop it, Paula! (picture me slapping my hand)).
Down every two-lane road that might be named Hank Holler or Joe's Gap, you might find a bit of the way you thought it would look.
The previously mentioned Museum of Appalachia is a must see.
If you are a Couch Surfer, you can stay with Tom and his two beautiful Bengal cats in the hills outside of Hixson.
Tom is remodeling his kitchen. It was fun to evaluate backsplash samples and paint when I knew it was not going to go in my kitchen!
In a couple of hours from Knoxville, you can get to Chattanooga. I might even be interested in renting a place here for a week or two in the future.
Here you can find bike paths along the Tennessee River, new condos, independently-owned restaurants with tasty food, a sculpture garden at the beautiful Hunter art museum, an aquarium (I skipped that), and a general store devoted entirely to the Moon Pie. (I had a bologna sandwich on white bread and I am not complaining one bit!)
[img://photos.travellerspoint.com/510746/Stacke_Book_Fountain.jpg caption=Stacked Book Fountain]
The ultimate draw is the International Towing and Recovery Museum (read wrecker truck) - the only one in the world; Chatanooga is where the tow truck was invented. I had a wonderful couple of hours here. The restoration work was stupendous. You walked away thinking "No matter what you do in life, be proud of it and recognize its importance."
I also followed a 2 1/2 year old around the museum as he showed his grandparents his favorite place. He explained a winch, pointed out various models, and demonstrated features. I asked his mother if his father had a towing service. She replied, "No, he's a lawyer. We have no idea where he got this knowledge and fascination but we hope we can find someone to help him with it."
So, Eastern Tennessee, I apologize for bad mouthing you. But trust me - I will never go through Pigeon Forge again as long as I live.
Check the photo gallery to the right for more pix of Eastern Tennessee to see what you might like.