This vacation was spent mainly relaxing and just enjoying the fact that I did not have a schedule to keep or plans. We hit some of the highlights (mentioned in the first post) and after that we just spent time bumming around the little shops, eating, and relaxing in the motel room.
We spent Thursday out and about. We went through the motor tour around Gatlinburg (stop light #8), that went through the mountains. We were attempting to do a little hiking to see Roaring Fork Falls.Did find out that to get a spot to park along the trail, it will need to be something accomplished earlier in the morning. There were people EVERYWHERE!! No place to park or get off the road in order to go hiking, though some cars were just randomly off in the woods…hopefully they were able to get out when they were ready to leave. The drive was beautiful, we did one stop at a look out that had a spot available, and the rest we just drove and looked for bear — didn’t see any <sad face>.
Things that were learned. If you get to Gatlinburg early enough you can park along the back street and not have to pay for parking. They do have parking lots available, and you can leave your car there all day (from 6:00 am – 2:00 am), the lots range from $5-$8 per day parking. The strip is easily maneuvered and you can walk everywhere. The pedestrians have the ‘ride-a-way’ when you’re driving but be extra careful when walking because not all cars abide by the rules.
Thursday (6/23) we had Five Guys and then went back to Luigi’s for Gyro’s that night. Picked carmelcorn up at the Carmelcorn store. <hehe> The patrons of the store were not very happy to be serving the public, maybe they had just had a crazy day; I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and go back when we visit again.
Friday (6/24) morning dawned bright and clear, though there had been a rain storm the night before – evidenced by the high muddy river running in front of our motel. We hit the Donut Friar up for some more glazed croissants and Bavarian pillows. The Donut Friar was located in an area called “The Village“, a very neat grouping of little shops that was across from our motel. Then of course it was Starbucks to the rescue for some caffeine. The guy taking our order told KJ she would be able to cover the cost of our $968 (random number…I didn’t need that much caffeine) order because of the NBA or washing the dishes, she gently rolled her eyes and asked later why her height made people think she played basketball. And also verified that out of the two options she would be washing dishes <hehe>. We then started our trip home.
We (meaning I) did research prior to the trip and found a list of restaurants from the Guy Fieri Food Network Show, Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives. We picked Cafe Rakka in Hendersonville, TN to stop on the way home and grab some lunch. WAS NOT DISAPPOINTED!! The food was amazingly good. KJ was making comments about how they don’t advertise that Guy had been there…I gently pointed out the massive poster hanging on the wall. We then noticed a “Guy was Here” signature by the door. The atmosphere was good and the staff was friendly. Well worth the stop.
Made it home, after going back over the creepy narrow bridges just east of Sikeston, MO. It was a great time, and very relaxing.