brought the RV home on Monday February 6th, 2006 and it had only sat in the
driveway for 3 days when Gary got itchy feet. The first thing
Thursday morning he announced, “We need to go some where, how about
Nashville”. I still hadn’t had my first coffee and he's bugging me
about a trip in the RV! You just have to understand that I don’t
like to engage in heavy conversation (or any sort of conversation) until
about an hour after I have had my first cup of coffee in the
morning. I bit my tongue and asked, “Is it warm down there?”
started checking out the Internet for weather reports and soon found out
that no, it isn’t warm down there. How about Myrtle Beach? Not very
warm there either so maybe Nashville wouldn’t be too bad since there
is plenty to do there. The next step was to find a campground that was
open since it was the middle of winter. Trust me, there are not a lot of
places open this time of year, but I did find one in Indiana that would
be our half way stop and the KOA in Nashville stays open year round. The
next thing was to get ready to leave early the next morning! What a rush
but the pieces fell together easily enough, trip to the vet to get the
dogs shots up to date and paper work ready for customs, groceries,
laundry, clothes . . . yikes. Well at least with an RV if you
can’t decide what you need to take to wear you can take everything,
just empty the closet . . . hangers and all.
February 11th (my dad’s birthday) we were heading down
highway 401 toward Sarnia. We crossed the border and headed down
I69 to Auburn, Indiana for our first night in the RV. It was snowing,
it was cold, it did not stop snowing, the windows in the
RV were covered with ice, it was cold, the campground was
right beside the highway and it was noisy, the dogs didn’t like
it – I wasn't all that thrilled either. Morning came early!
the road early . . . heading towards Nashville, down I69 to Indianapolis
then I65 straight through to Nashville. We pulled into the KOA in good
time and other than the fact that it is still snowing the
campground was very nice. At least we were not the only people crazy
enough to be camping in the winter.
morning we woke up to see the ground covered with a light blanket of
snow but the temperatures were rising and it didn’t stay long. We took
a shuttle over to the Gaylord Opryland Resort and wow was it amazing! I
have never seen anything like it in my life, I want to live there! We
toured around all the different sections, rode the boat along the river
and just took in the beauty of the flowers
and trees. It was
spectacular. We then walked over to the Opry Mills mall and checked it
out before returning to the RV. That night we had dinner at a neat
little place within walking distance of the campground called Cock of
the Walk, the specialty of the house was fried catfish.
morning Gary went off to rent a car so we were able to tour around the
city. We went downtown and checked out the area, walked by the Honky
Tonk bars and listened to a few guitar pickers trying to make it to the
big time. We walked up to the Ryman Auditorium and did a tour there . .
. what a great place, you could just feel the history. The Grand Ole
Opry was there from 1943 to 1974, it was then moved to the Opry House in
Opryland, but for a couple of months this winter it was back in the
Ryman, we decided to come back for the Opry show on Friday.
it was Valentines day, Gary treated me to lunch at saloon called Coyote
Ugly, I’m not sure if there was a message there or not, but I do know
that I prefer the more traditional Valentine’s gift of previous years.
next stop was the Belle Meade Plantation, a thriving Thoroughbred stud
farm in the 1800’s. Now a museum, it displays an interesting look into
the lives of the rich and privileged of that era.
morning we went back downtown so that we could tour the Country Music
Hall of Fame and Museum. An amazing building that depicts the evolution
of country music and houses the names and accomplishments of all the
greats: Patsy Cline, Minnie Pearl, Kitty Wells, Roy Rogers, Flatt &
Scruggs, Porter Wagoner, Tammy Wynette, Willy Nelson to name a few.
evening we went back to the Opryland Resort to have dinner at Volare, a
wonderful Italian restaurant.
we did a tour around the city and then spent most of the day back at the
campground, we had tickets that night for a show at the Gaylord
Entertainment Center – the Blue Collar Comedy Tour was in town. It was
great, the guys were in fine form and their new tour "One for the
Road" was just starting so the story’s and jokes were all new.
The arena holds 20,000 people and it was a sell out! They mentioned that
it was the largest audience that they had ever played to. Gosh they were
Gary returned the car and we spent the day in the
campground, the dogs liked
that. We had tickets for the Grand Ole Opry that night and a bus was
picking us up. We arrived at the Ryman just a few minutes before show
time, the place was packed, and it was a sell out. I think the main draw
was that Elvis Costello was appearing for the first time on the Opry
stage, singing with Emmylou Harris. The show is divided into half hour
sessions and, as always, was aired live on 650 WSM, so there are
commercials between every act. The list of entertainers that night
set - Little Jimmy Dickens, John Conlee & Tracy Byrd
set – Bill Anderson, Jeannie Seely, Riders in The Sky & The
set – Emmylou Harris, Elvis Costello, Gillian Welch & David
set – Jim Ed Brown, Bobby Osborne & the Rocky Top X-Press and
was an amazing show and sitting there in the Ryman, listening to the
music was a very memorable experience. It was the highlight of the trip
to head home and guess what . . . it is snowing and blowing
and icy and cold. We started up the road thinking if it
was too bad we would just pull over in a rest area or Wal-Mart and wait
it out, but we didn’t have to. As we drove into Kentucky the
skies cleared and the sun shone and the roads were bare. Our destination
was the same RV park in Indiana for the night, we arrived just before 7
p.m. and it was cold. We had already winterized the unit so we had no
running water, this part of camping I don’t like . . .but it was only one
night and we were parked right next door to the camp's comfort station
(showers, toilets, laundry, etc.) Sunday morning we were ready to
complete the final leg of the trip. It was early and we had a nice
sunny day to do it. We arrived back in Burlington late in the afternoon,
safe and sound with our first trip under our belts and still speaking to
each other, so I have to say it was a success.
next RV trip will begin April 23rd, when we head out for the Fort
Wilderness Campground at Walt Disney World in Florida. It will be
warm there! Yahoo!