We made the decision to not drive all the way to Asheville last night so we can enjoy a leisurely drive through the Smokey Mountains today. It was such a beautiful drive during our last visit here and we didn’t want to do it in the dark. We woke up at the Walmart parking lot in Newport, Tennessee and headed east into North Carolina.
Today was a sad day for us all. We were going to have to say good-bye to our good friends. No more reminiscing about ice cream in Croatia. No more late night talks about sailing across the seven seas. No more jam sessions with a splash of wine. No more cupcake baking with an extra cup of flour thanks to Mila. No more bouncing travel ideas off of each other.
Tonight will be our third and last night of courtesy parking at Nathan and Leah’s house. It has been a great reunion for us and finally gave us a bit of an insight what life is like in eastern Tennessee. I have said in numerous occasions that if I was to move somewhere, it would be in middle or eastern Tennessee. Some place where I can buy some land and build a little homestead. I am hoping that when we eventually get cured of the traveling bug, we will be able to settle in a place like this.
This trip has really taken on a life of its own since we left over 3 months ago. We had a pretty good idea what it was like to work and live on the road, after all, we’ve done it before. What is totally new to us is how many people we have met through the blog and how gracious people have been in opening the doors to their homes to us.
Our stay at the Nashville KOA has come to an end. We are glad we came here instead of skipping it even though we are pretty ready for some warmer weather. Today, we are actually not quite leaving Nashville. We have a lot of online friends who are from this area or are very familiar with it so we have a couple of places we need to check out after we hitch up and drive off.
There is a certain guilt I feel when I am revisiting a town that I have previously been to. It seems that we should be trying harder to see new places during these trips but we just can’t help ourselves but to retrace our steps to try to relive something in our memory. We have done a pretty good job of visiting new places and starting today, we are going to indulge ourselves and find our way back to some of the best spots from our last trip.
We had a dilemma to work out last night. We had initially planned on going to Crossville, Tennessee to visit a friend and skipping Nashville on this trip altogether. We had visited Nashville our last time here but it was just after the 2010 flood and a lot of places were in disrepair. We eventually decided that we needed to make another trip through Music City so we won’t regret it later.
Today we left Nashville and are so happy to have made the decision to stop here. It felt like the right one. And where else would Ava had a chance to dance her little heart out?!?! Music City was the perfect place to do so.
But before we headed out of town, we stopped by a Cracker Barrel to give it another try. The last time we stopped by one, we had the most over-the-top ridiculous are-we-on-camera waitresses. She checked on us every 15 seconds, I swear. But I am happy to report that the wait staff in Nashville are normal.
Chattanooga well exceeded all of our expectations and we were kind of sad to leave so soon but there is much more of Tennessee we plan to see. We packed up and hit the road this morning headed towards our next destination, Nashville. Just up the Tennessee river.
Today is the end of our 4 day stay here at beautiful Asheville, North Carolina. After we left Charleston, SC, we had originally planned to head along the coast into North Carolina’s outer banks. Even though I am already feeling a tinge of regret for not making it there, we are glad we came to Asheville. Even the family of ducks came to say goodbye to Ava before we left.