Sunday, November 3, 2019

A Clear Start, Few Morning Bumps, Smooth Sailing, Evening Jiggles-Literally

Cracker Barrel, Knoxville, Tennessee

We woke up to a clear sky and that looks like frost on the windshields next door. I can’t believe that we were both in bed shortly after 8:30 last night! I knew I was tired right out and figured that Bill had to be even more so. You’d think we would have been up at 4 am on Sunday, Nov. 3rd but no, it was 5:30 when I first woke up and although he told me later he was up at 2 for a couple of minutes, Bill was still in bed too. We got up at 6. I had a great sleep.

Clear sky meant a cool night too
Now those windows look frosted!
We had our blue flame heater on but it was acting a bit wonky yesterday and kept going out on us so we put the furnace on after coming back from dinner last night. Trying to regulate the heat, we crank it up for a thorough warm up (I was chilled to the bone from the rain) and then when it got too hot, we turned it down. I didn't know that Bill turned it right off and that explained why I couldn’t warm my feet up and was bundled in my chair like a mummy.

Yup one of the things we want to avoid!
It was down to 65F in here! That’s when I decided to go to bed for warmth although there was no heat up there either. Curled up in a ball, the two of us eventually warmed each other up and the bed sheets. I'm ashamed to say that I've been wearing my socks to bed the last couple of nights. That's just not me! So, back to this morning, we made our hot drinks and sat reading blogs for a bit. Bill noticed one of our Suite tires was low again, the same one with the problem last summer, so he got out his compressor and topped it up as well as all the rest.

Pretty quiet interstate this morning and look at that sky!
Bob had his own bump by blowing a fuse when they turned the hot water heater on. Then, he ran out of gas in his generator and needed to plug into ours. No problem for us. Bill thought that we had a half full gas can in the truck but that was empty. Fun, eh? They are learning lots within the first couple of days! Experiences, bad or good, teach us better than anything else. So, we dealt with the small stuff and Bill nipped into the restaurant at a few minutes past 6 to pick us up 4 ‘just out of the oven’ biscuits. This made us think of Rob and Pat.
Hot biscuits for breakfast
We were on the road at 8 am, standard time. Bill remembered to turn our clocks back last night. I would have forgotten. My sister back home said they forgot because they were so excited that their Maple Leafs went into overtime and won the game. They are die-hard Leaf fans 😊 so we are happy for them. It is such a treat to be travelling and still have communication back home at the touch of a fingertip.
And of course, some water towers!

We got onto I-75S easily enough and were headed in the right direction. Big thumbs up to that, directly into the blue, sunny skies and warmth. Once we got close to Cincinnati, we started seeing signs for the I-275 bypass so watched for it, ignored the gps’s and took it. It may have meant about 20 miles around the big metropolis but we avoided downtown traffic. So far, the interstate had not been busy on this Sunday but downtown could be a different story.

Things that caught my eye today
Around 10:45 we were entering Kentucky and nearing the split onto I-75/I-71S. It was 11 am and we were back on the road again towards Knoxville, our evening stopover. First things first, we both needed fuel so pulled off at Exit 181 to a Speedway with a good price of $2.89/gal for diesel. Bill and Bob also filled up their diesel cans as well as their gas cans for the generators. Now, we should be prepared for most anything!
I had to twist, stand on my head and stick a leg out the window
to get this but our friends are still with us!
Around 12 we stopped at the Rest Area near Georgetown, a pretty water tower, and we had a nice break. It was 53F by then and that is pretty darn nice. After sufficient leg stretching, eating our prepared lunches and oogling over an Ontario motor home beside us in the parking lot, we pulled out. It was 12:30 and we had about 2 ½ hours to go. The drive was beautiful from there on and when we were 30 minutes from Cracker Barrel and out of the mountains to get reception, I called to see about overnight parking. We went from 900' elevation to 2,260' within half hour. 

More interesting stuff
The Manager was excellent on the phone but we soon learned that he didn’t know what he was or we were talking about. He said we were very welcome and that they didn’t get much traffic on Sunday. Duh! 

The place was packed, the rv spaces, which are too small anyway, were full of cars. We drove around and Bob got in a tight spot and eventually we did the same thing. Waiting for patrons to leave so we could jiggle our units in better. We arrived around 4:10 and went in to eat around 6:30. Customers were coming in as quick as others were going.

The sun set while we were waiting for people to leave spaces around our units
We had no wait whatsoever inside for a table but when we returned to the lot after eating, not much had improved. The vehicle behind us had left so Bill was able to get straightened out and in closer to the curb. That is where we put down jacks for the night. I turned the Blue Flame heater on to warm the Suite up. I enjoyed the late meal tonight, but kept it simpler with no heavy carbs.  A grilled chicken caesar salad and a hot creamy tea went down well. We all hoped the late meal wouldn't keep us up.
We parked here while we ate and there was an suv behind us
that had moved after supper so we jiggled back and forth to
get in here straight and against the curb
Bill worked on Google maps looking at tomorrow’s route. More finagling with bypasses will be in order as we journey through Tennessee and Georgia to reach our campground. This was a much nicer driving day, in all aspects. The difficulty only came into play when we arrived here at Cracker Barrel. We could have moved on down the road to Sam’s Club but we were tired after another long day and really didn’t want to go any further.  Bob walked around and found a better spot for Big Red (my name for it, not theirs) near the back of the store away from Interstate traffic noise. 

Bob and Jo-Anne started out here but it was right next to noisy traffic
My sensible supper
Bill and I were content to stay where we were and sat inside with our laptops and I tried to read a few chapters of my book. Last night was such an early bedtime that I really didn’t want to repeat it but the evening will play out as it does with not too many expectations!

And some views of the Tennessee mountain climbing

So pretty - just a prelude to what's coming
Good night y'all!

Thank you for the visit today!


  1. I can't even sleep at night without my socks! LOL! My feet are always cold - even in the summer unless I'm outside and the sun is hitting them.
    Sounds like you had a good trip yesterday and I pray today's is as well. Traffic through the week can be a grind.
    I like CB's Chicken Caesar Salad. It was almost enough food for two.
    Safe travels today!

    1. Too funny about the socks. I prefer bare toes in bed. :)
      It was a good trip and a great travel day.
      The salad was great and I couldn't quite finish it all. :0

  2. Just think each day brings you closer to warmer weather. We didn’t bother changing our clocks since we would just have to change them back when we arrive in Arizona in a few days.

    1. As long as we are seeing sunshine, it makes us think of what is ahead. Yay!
      My sister is talking about snow and rain and I just smile. :)

  3. I think Cracker Barrel has to be my favorite restaurant, though I've never stayed there. It's just too noisy for me. Looks like you were able to squeeze in perfectly.

    1. We were able to straighten out after a couple of vehicles left. We actually stood in an empty spot and shooed people away for about an hour! ha ha We only got a couple of miserable people pointing to the rv spots. They don't understand about slide outs. LOL

  4. Looks like a great drive. You know we love Tennessee, you are in nice green country! Dinner looks awesome, love a great Chicken caesar salad! Doesn't Cracker Barrel make the best biscuits YUM!

    1. It was a wonderful drive! Tennessee is beautiful, up and down and great views!
      CB biscuits - oh my!

  5. You are making good time and supporting some CB'S we have never stayed over night in one yet, As far as by passes through cities we seldom use them either But sounds like you are enjoying this years adventure as well.

    1. The C B managers say it is a courtesy to their guests - some are easy to get into, others not so much. We are very grateful for the bypasses.

  6. I'm sure you'll be happy to get to where you plan to stay for a bit. That's a lot of driving, something I no longer feel I'd be be up to.

    That salad looks delicious!

  7. Glad you guys are pointed in the right direction. Hope you have an awesome winter wherever you end up.

    1. Thank you Lorne. It would be nice to see you in AZ somewhere if the Mexicans let you leave. :)

  8. Glad you had another good weather day. You and your friend are moving along quickly. Changing to daylight standard time is always disconcerting, but sounds like you just slipped unknowingly into it.

    1. Thank you. Our friends are catching on quickly and try to stick close to us on the busy interstates.
      The time change went by pretty much unnoticed this fall. :)

  9. Sounds like a good travel day. We like Cracker Barrel and stopped for lunch a few times when we had the 5th wheel but never with the Stinger "B" or over night. It was a nice idea putting in RV/Bus spaces but they are certainly not for Big Rigs. Glad to read in the end you succeeded getting your rig into a space for the night. Continued safe travels.

    1. Thank you, D & T. It took some patience on our part but only because we wanted to eat there again. Sam's Club, with good reviews, was about 20 minutes down the road.