Tag Archives: road trip

Rhode Island or Bust

I lost my job in July. But that’s not what I’m here to talk about. When I lost my job, it allowed me to take some time off, giving me a chance to spend time with one of my oldest friends (as in how long I’ve known her).  She was also off of work because she was going back to school to get her Master’s Degree at Rhode Island School of Design in Providence. Turns out she would be driving up and needed someone to go with her. Since I had nothing better to do, I offered to be her partner in this extra long road trip, from East Tennessee to Rhode Island.  We loaded up and headed out. It was Rhode Island or Bust.

To the East

We headed East from Knoxville up I-81. We would be overnighting in Richmond, VA with E’s brother and his girlfriend. The only hiccup was our inability to find a Waffle House when it was time for lunch. We opted for Cracker Barrel instead. Perfectly fine, but it’s no Waffle House. Almost there, we decided we looked like we’d been driving for 7 hours and smelled like it too. So, we stopped at a rest area and cleaned up a bit and changed our clothes. We were once again the ravishing goddesses we were when we started out. Once in Richmond, we met up with E’s brother and girlfriend at this great oriental restaurant, Beijing. The food and service were excellent for a busy Friday night.They are a lovely couple and so kind to let us stay in their place. We spent the night at their house and went to a local diner, City Diner,  for breakfast. A great way to start the day!

Through the Big City and then some

Back on the road, we made our way up through the New England states and toll road mecca. Tolls are a huge PIA, in case you didn’t know. There has to be a better way. Someone out there, please come up with a better way! The roads were terrible too, so it’s not like the $40 we paid in tolls were going for great roads or anything. Rant over.

I was most nervous about driving through New York City. While, we wouldn’t be on the city streets, I knew it would still be a bit crazy and stressful. Guess what! It was! There were so many odd on ramps and off ramps, stay left, go right, stay left, cross 4 lanes and go right. It was a bit nuts. But we made it through without incident. We took a wrong turn somewhere after NYC and ended up taking the scenic route through Connecticut. I’m glad we did. It was beautiful and I will definitely be going back there.

Providence Found

Once in Providence, Rhode Island, we found our Airbnb,  a big sprawling home divided up into apartments. We were exhausted, but also starving. We went out in search of food. Apparently, Providence strongly discourages late night shenanigans because almost all of the nearby restaurants closed at 9pm. Yes, even on Saturday. It was close to 8:30, so we were limited on options. We decided (decided for us because not much else in the area), on Andreas, a greek restaurant.  We started with the Mussels and they were yummy. I quite frankly don’t remember what else we had because we were half asleep already. Back at the Airbnb, I showered and promptly went to sleep.

Moving In and Heading Out

We started out early, so we could have breakfast then get the van unloaded and me on a train to NYC.  We unpacked the van on to the sidewalk because we had to get the vehicle quickly moved. Finally we got everything into her apartment and she dropped me at the Amtrak station.

New Adventures

We went our separate ways. She, off to a completely new and different life. Me, to a solo vacation in NYC and a new life waiting for me at home. I am thankful that we were able to spend this time together and support one another when we needed it the most!

I am proud of both of us for being brave women!

 

 

Tuesday Trekkin’ Cades Cove and Elkmont

We finally got back on the road for Tuesday Trekkin’. My Tuesdays have turned into take the cat to the vet day. We have 6 cats and 4 of them are seniors, so vet visits are a way of life. Anyway, back to the real reason we’re here.

Plans? What plans?

We had been planning to go to Jonesborough, the first town in Tennessee. However, plans are more like suggestions for us, so that didn’t happen. It was cold and I didn’t fancy walking around outside in the cold. We decided a car ride might be a better option. We could see things and still enjoy the heated seats. There was also the lure of possible snow in the mountains. Snow can make pretty pictures.

Lunch

We planned to eat at a bbq place in Townsend, but we got there and it was closed for the season. We found a great little Italian place, Brianna’s Italian Restaurant and Cuisine,  just down the road instead. It proved to be a happy accident. Walt had the stromboli and I had the eggplant parmesan. Both were excellent! We will definitely be going back.

Cades Cove

Cades Cove was a bit of a disappointment as there was only a bit of snow here and there. Winter in the mountains is brown. Cades Cove is a valley in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The road is an 11 mile loop where you can see tons of wildlife, some old historic cabins, and a few old churches. We took the shortcut though and saw none of that. Onward we went.

Elkmont

Walt decided we might try Elkmont, but the sun was setting fast. We weren’t sure we’d make it in time. They close a lot of the roads after dark due to possible hazardous conditions in the winter. But we made it! I had not been there before and found it pretty cool. It’s a small resort community in the mountains where people could stay in the summer. Most of the leases were up in 2001. After that, it became a ghost town. The Wonderland Hotel was once in this area, but in 2005 it collapsed. Most of the historical items were removed and a small annex was left. The annex burned down in 2016.

A look back at Tuesday Trekkin’ 2017

In 2017, I started a new travel blog called Tuesday Trekkin’.  I take Tuesday off of work so my husband and I can spend some time together and travel around East Tennessee. So far, we’ve gone to Clinton, Norris, the Foothills Parkway, Burlington in East Knoxville, and Lenoir City.

Clinton was the first official Trek. Clinton is an adorable little town with tons of antique shops. I also recommend a trip to the Green Mcadoo Cultural Center. 

 

The next Trek was to the Foothills Parkway in the Great Smoky Mountains in East Tennessee.  A beautiful drive up the mountain with gorgeous views.

Norris, TN was our third trek. We timed this just right. The leaves were amazing that day!

I snuck in a weekend trek to Nicholasville, KY on Thanksgiving weekend.

One trek kept us close to home with a drive around Burlington in East Knoxville. 

Our final trek of the year was to Lenoir City. The best thing about Lenoir City was the Le Noir Restaurant. Downtown was quiet with a few antique shops.

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Keep Trekkin’!