I dropped off the Blue Ridge Parkway near Asheville to visit a dear friend in Greenville. I was going to miss the BRP but I was looking forward to hanging out with Melba much more. It had been more than ten years since we’d been together—waaaaay tooooo looooong.
Checked into the KOA in Travelers Rest, just north of Greenville, got settled and headed to the local brewery, Swamp Rabbit. Decent beers (more Belgians & white ales than I prefer, though) and friendly folks. Back at camp I met Jason, the KOA owner. Nice guy, turns out he moved his family of six to Travelers Rest from Plano, Texas. Enjoyed chatting with him.
Thursday I ran a slew of errands. I couldn’t stand my truck any longer and found the best car wash I’ve ever been to. The owner of Cedar Pete’s took excellent care of my truck, even though I was from outta town and he’d never see me again. That’s hospitality & character. While my truck got nice & clean, B would have to rely on rainstorms to wash the bugs out of her teeth.
I also had to hunt down a print shop and notary so I could request a certified birth certificate from Orange County, California so I could then take it, in person, to a post office or county clerk to get a new passport to replace the one stolen by the cretin in Houston. I would repeat this charade in Jackson, Mississippi because, apparently, the wheels-off state of California won’t accept embossed, non-inked notary stamps. California has gotten out of control. I say, build the wall—on the east side of the state!
Friday morning I got kicked out of the KOA, even though I thought Jason & I were friends! Lol. Jason referred me to the Palmetto Cove RV park near Table Rock Mountain, a nice place 15 miles away. Once I parked the trailer I was finally headed downhill to Greenville to visit Melba!
We had a wonderful time, lots of laughs. So good to spend time with her. We had burgers at a great place downtown, Grill Marks. I’m glad the burger was huge ’cause it was awesome. Downtown Greenville is a super cool area. I could live there. Later, Melba & I hooked up with her friends Cathy & Dan for tacos & beers. I think there was something wrong with the time because it passed way too quickly. Before I knew it, I needed to get headed back up the hill because it was going to get dark and rain was on the way. I made it up the windy roads before the storm closed in. Friday was a highlight of my trip; I’m so glad I got to hang out with such a good friend and to meet a couple new ones. Thanks, Melba!
I headed out early and before long Siri & CarPlay steered me onto narrow mountain roads. Before I was afraid I’d need to throw the transmission into four-wheel drive, I stopped, turned around, turned Siri off, and charted my own route. Ha, I guess I didn’t do much better because I got the sense I was headed the wrong direction—and I was right. We were Atlanta-bound, not headed to Nashville. Course altered again, I wound my way through Georgia, North Carolina and Tennessee. The drive along the Ococee River was particularly nice. Looked like great rafting. Once I finally hit Chattanooga it was then a long slog north to Nashville. By the time I hit the mediocre KOA in north Nashville, I was done driving for a while and didn’t even go back into Nashville to kick around. Spent Sunday watching Webb Simpson win the Players. Congrats to a solid, Christian guy! On my way out of Nashville in the morning I had breakfast at Loveless Cafe. Great BBQ pork omelette—the restaurant lives up to its reputation. Very good.
Natchez Trace ParkwayAfter eating I eased onto the Natchez Trace Parkway. The Trace isn’t as grand as the BRP but it’s very nice. A great, easy drive through woods & fields. Lots of pullouts and places to stretch your legs. I saw several pheasant, a turkey, a red tail hawk (who just missed my windshield) and two snakes in the middle of the road who gave their all for scavenger birds. The Trace is another wonderful road managed by the National Park Service. I over-nighted at the National Forest Service campground at Davis Lake near Tupelo. It was the best $20 I’d spent on a night’s lodging.
After another easy drive from Davis Lake headed south, including a walk through a cool Cypress Swamp, I landed in Jackson where I repeated my FedEx Office printing and AAA notarizing to make the county officials in California happy. Hopefully the bums will accept this version…
The rest of the trip will be a straightforward run from Jackson with stops in Shreveport and Tyler State Park in Texas, then to my campsite in front of Julie & Brad’s home for a couple nights until I check back into my homesite at the Vineyards in Grapevine. One more post about this trip will be coming at you in the next couple days. Then I’m hanging low for a while. Looking forward to a trip to Ruidoso with two good friends and then, in mid June, a week at Table Rock Lake in Missouri and from there onto the great North and Northeast. That’s the plan, anyway! Stay tuned.