Thursday, September 26, 2013

Back at the Manor

Back in home port for a couple of weeks.  We both really enjoyed this trip very much.  On our recent trips and what we plan for the future is to spend more time a our destinations and enjoy what that particular area has to offer.

Now its "get the laundry done" and load back up because our next outing begins two weeks from yesterday.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

On our way home

We left Nashville this morning on our way back toward Missouri and tonight's stop is in Benton, IL.  This is near Rend Lake recreation area and some time we might come back to this area and spend a few days.  We have been to this KOA three other times, twice in 2010 and once last year.  It is a convenient four hour drive home from here.

Our GWF is still hanging around for us.  We had rain showers most of the night last night and this morning early.  It quit about an hour before we had to pack up for travel.  We also had a few drops around noon while on the road but mostly just stayed cloudy which is always nice for driving.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

a better day

I'm doing much better today, its marvelous what just three little pills can do.  The instructions are to take the whole ten day prescription so that is what I will do and drink lots of water.

This has been a super trip and we have enjoyed both eastern Kentucky and north central Tennessee.  Tomorrow we start the trip back towards the Martin Manor with just a one night stopover in Benton, Illinois.  If all goes as planned we will head out again on Oct. 9 for some quiet time around three lakes in Arkansas.

Stay tuned.

Monday, September 23, 2013

interesting morning

I understood that the Gibson mandolin factory was inside the Opryland Mall and even the Google Earth pictures show its location.  This morning we drove there and didn't find a store front where it should have been.  I went inside the mall and ask at an information kiosk where they told me that Gibson didn't rebuild or return after the 2010 flood that wiped out this whole valley.  At that flood there was four feet of flood water over the Grand Ole Opry stage and through all the Mall stores.

With no mandolin factory to tour we then spent the rest of the morning at a hospital emergency room.  I have had symptoms the past couple of days and Dr JoAnn confirmed my diagnosis so off to a hospital we went.  The examining Doctor, after the results of my UA, agreed with our assumptions and gave me an antibiotic prescription for my UTI.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Saturday night at the Grand Ole Opry

We both really enjoyed our night at the Opry.  I would have enjoyed it more if they were still like their much earlier shows, all acoustic without the high volume amplified electric instruments.  A few acts performed with only their own guitars and without the backup band and they were much easier to listen to even tho their guitars were plugged in.  There were several new acts that we had never heard of along with a few oldies but goodies.  We were in the upper tiers of the balcony so center stage was quite far away.  They did have big screens at the sides showing the performances up close.  The good part about being in the balcony is that the risers between seat rows are high enough that a tall person in front of anyone doesn't bother the view of the stage.

The list of performers in order of appearance with my opinions

Jeannie Seely - good
Morgan Frazier - not so much
The Whites - great
Jim Ed Brown - good
Jean Shepard - great
American Young - okay
John Conlee - good
Jan Howard - good
Jonathan Jackson - not so much (cast member of TV show Nashville)
Opry Square Dancers - fun to watch, been there done that
Bill Anderson - good
Sons of Fathers - okay
Charles Esten - good (cast member of TV show Nashville)

With the 4,000+ seats, that looked to be mostly full, you can imagine the parking lot that is shared with the Opryland mall.  We needed a GPS device to help find our truck after it was over.  Many other folks were pushing the panic button on their key fobs to get an audible location on theirs.  We wandered around for a little bit but the lock/unlock button on our key fob finally showed us some flashing lights to be a good beacon to our ride home.

We have nothing planned for today (yet) but still have Monday and Tuesday here in Nashville to check out anything else that we find interesting.  I do want to visit the Gibson mandolin factory one of those days.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Day three

Tonight it's Opry time but today we are just resting.  We did make a short trip out to a Kroger for a few groceries.  I had to grin when the clerk ask for my ID to buy some beer.

Now we are just resting and listening to some CDs.  The current one playing is an Everly Brothers that Jo picked up this morning.  This CD includes some of our favorites from the past such as "All I have to do is dream," "Devoted to you," "Let it be me," and "True Love."  They sure had the best family harmony.  When we are just resting around the trailer we usually have the tv on and when there isn't any program that we want to watch we tune to a music channel and let it be playing in the background.  As now, we can also play our own CDs.

Friday, September 20, 2013

Nashville day two

This morning we had tickets for a tour back stage at the Opry house.  It was very interesting to see the star dressing rooms and studio A where many TV shows are taped including Hee Haw and the new show titled Nashville.  We then went on stage and had our photo taken on the 6 foot round piece of the Ryman flooring that was brought over for nostalgia and continuation of traditions.  This was not removed from center stage at the Ryman but from the stage entrance so that every performer at the Ryman had walked across this piece of flooring.  We will be back here Saturday night for the Opry and are looking forward to that experience, our seats are up in the balcony.

 props and costumes from the show "Nashville"
 Mail boxes for all members of the Grand Ole Opry

 the 6 foot section of flooring from the Ryman
 again the dynamic duo

After the tour of the Opry house we boarded the General Jackson paddle wheel river boat for a lunch tour on the Cumberland River.  It was a three hour trip that included a very good buffet with a stage show of the Shotgun Red band.  It was a very good performance of a great variety of country music and the individual musicians were excellent.  The crowd that boarded the boat was divided into two buffet sessions and shows and we were in the first group.  When we left the dining hall the second group came in for their lunch buffet and show.  After our lunch we walked around the decks and ended up on the top deck where a couple of guys were playing country music to requests and it was great fun.

 The guitar and base players were the act on this top deck but this man was from the crowd that came up and sang a Merl Haggard song very well.
 Looking forward to the skyline of Nashville just before we turned around and headed back up river.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Nashville day one

We purchased a package of tickets for our tour of this country music capitol of the world.  Our first stop this morning was the Ryman Auditorium with the following pictures:

The mother church of Country Music

 The dynamic duo center stage at the Opry.  They wouldn't give me time to put it in tune.

Then we drove a few blocks to the Country Music Hall of Fame.  There were lots of exhibits  but we got a few pictures of some of the displays as follows.

 A very early model of Martin guitar
 Connie Smith's guitar
 Buck Owen's red, white, and blue guitar
 Bill Monroe's early mandolin
 Earl Scruggs banjo
 Lester Flatt's Martin guitar
 Hank's Martin guitar
 the car from Smokey and the Bandit
 costume sewing machine

 Patsy Cline
 Loretta Lynn

Ricky Skaggs early mandolin played on stage at the Opry at age 7
Kellie Pickler's dress and mirror ball trophy from Dancing with the Stars
Taylor Swift

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Music City

This morning we relocated to Nashville, TN home of the Grand Ol' Opry.  Tomorrow we have tickets for a tour of the Ryman Auditorium where the Opry spent many years of radio broadcasts on Saturday nights.  We have many other items of interest that we want to explore while we are here this week.  We have passed through this part of TN several times with our trailer but never spent any good time doing the tourist thing.  Several years ago we were here with the Robinettes and enjoyed a day at what was then OpryLand and now is a discount mall.  We have tickets for this Saturday night's Opry and we are looking forward to that.  We don't know who the star performers will be but expect it to be a fun show.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

more Kentucky

Sorry about no posting for yesterday, I was just to lazy to try and find something to talk about as we both just lazied around most of the day.  Tomorrow we travel on our way to Nashville.

This morning we got out for some more adventures.  Kentucky is known for its Blue Grass music, thoroughbred horses, bourbon, tobacco, and fried chicken.  We have seen/enjoyed all of the above in the past few days except for the last one so today we drove to Corbin, KY to the birthplace of KFC.  We had lunch at Col Harland Sanders Cafe and Court where he developed his secret receipt.  The restaurant counter now is just a modern KFC with the same menu as thousands of others around the world.  The dining area however was in the original cafe with museum displays around it preserving the original kitchen, office, cabin room, and other items.
 a model of the original

 There was a ghost in the room.

After lunch we drove to the Cumberland Falls State Park to see the falls there.  It was a short but scenic drive from Corbin with a fairly easy walking path to the top of the falls.  I took the path to the lower viewing area but it was too many steps for Jo.

 In the next two you can see the rainbow that is constant in the mist on sunny days.  They say that there is also a moonbow on nights of full moon but it would take special photo efforts to capture that event.  They say that this is the only waterfall on this hemisphere that has a moonbow.

 These next two are from the lower viewing platform.

 Some views of this scenic river.