MUSIC CITY, U.S.A.

Tennessee State Line
Crossing into Tennessee from Georgia

We left home Saturday, April 21st, and took our sweet time getting to Nashville, Tennessee, where we planned to spend to nights. We stayed in Nashville for two reasons: 1) our nephew, Lee, lives there and we wanted to hangout with him Saturday night; and 2) the campground we made reservations for is only 200.6 miles from home.

Since we retired, we now adhere to a two-two rule when traveling. After so many years of hurrying through airports and traveling at a whirlwind pace while on vacation, we now travel either two hundred miles or until 2:00 PM each day, whichever comes first. Our goal now is to enjoy the journey as much as the destination. Obviously, our code of travel is not an exact science, but we try to stick as closely to our two-two rule as possible. Ironically, we forgot that Nashville is on Central Time, an hour behind us in Georgia, so we inadvertently broke our on rule by leaving home later than we should have. We pulled into the campground a few minutes after three PM, local time.

Nashville is a great place to visit. It is home to the Grand Ole Opry, the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, and the Ryman Auditorium. We stayed at Two Rivers Campground on Music Valley Drive, which is close to the Opryland Hotel and the Grand Old Opry. It is also close to I-24, which earned it extra brownie points.

We met Lee for dinner at Puckett’s Grocery and Restaurant at the corner of 5th Street and Church, in the heart of downtown Nashville. Puckett’s began as a country grocery store in the village of Leipers Fork, Tennessee, back in the 1950s. The original location still exists, serving as a grocery store and restaurant. It has since been added to the National Register of Historic Places. Puckett’s now has five restaurant locations in Tennessee, serving up Southern fare and hosting live, local musical acts. Like most large cities, the downtown traffic in Nashville was horrible Saturday night, and parking is at a premium. However, the food at Puckett’s was excellent, and I would not hesitate to eat there again.

After dinner, the three of us headed to a bar called the Scoreboard on Music Valley Road to listen to some live music. To our surprise, the legendary Randy Travis and his wife were sitting at the table in front of us. Harry and I are old rockers at heart, but back in the 80s and early 90s, when country music icons like Alan Jackson, Garth Brooks, Tim McGraw, Tracy Lawrence, and the like, first came on the scene, we fell in love with country music. As the genre began to change, Harry and I went back to our roots, listening to classic rock. Still, there’s nothing like hearing the live version of a foot-tapping country song from the good old days.

It started raining early the next morning. We had planned to ride our bikes around the campground, and then do a little sightseeing nearby, but Mother Nature had other ideas in mind. Instead, we took a zero day, a hiking term, which easily correlates with RVing, and is self-explanatory. I spent the day doing laundry, and other fun chores.

On Monday, we awoke to yet more rain. Harry got drenched unhooking all the connections outside (electrical, sewer hoses, etc.) while I battened down the hatches inside the motorhome. After we retract the slides, we secure our electronics (read: pile the laptops and iPads on the bed), lock the shower door and refrigerator, make certain the antenna is down, the counters are cleared off, and turn off the ice maker. The last thing we do before departure is hook up our tow vehicle (in our case, a 2015 Jeep Cherokee) which we flat tow (all four-wheels on the ground). It only takes a few minutes to hook up the Jeep to the motorhome, but then we have to go through a series of steps to put the car’s transfer case in neutral. This prevents the transmission from turning while we’re driving. The rain let up for a few minutes this morning, and then naturally, the bottom fell out when it was time to hook up our toad. One person could easily perform this function, but it is easier with both of us working together, so I got drenched too. The last thing on our list is to hook up the auxiliary brake system, a requirement in many states when flat towing a vehicle. The whole process takes less than ten minutes, but it seems a lot longer when you are getting soaked.

We are now headed to Paducah, Kentucky, 142 miles from the campground in Nashville. We will Wally Dock tonight (spending the night in a Walmart parking lot). On Tuesday, morning,we will depart for Missouri, entering our third and fourth states on our journey.

Hopefully, the rain wont’t follow us.

Pickett's
Puckett’s Grocery and Restaurant, Downtown Nashville.
Randy Travis
Our nephew, Lee, with Randy Travis and his wife. The old couple sitting at the table behind them who photobombed the shot is Harry and me.
Lee Camp
Hanging out with our nephew, Lee, at the Scoreboard Bar and Grill in Nashville, TN.