From Reelfoot Lake we headed back to Middle Tennessee for a Tennessee Telecom Association Conference for me in Franklin.
It was a busy, short trip. Here goes:
We tried out a Jellystone Campground for the first time. We camped there primarily for the things it had onsite for Jess and Braden to do while I was conferencing. They enjoyed the playground, pool, inflatable obstacle course, bounce house, fire truck ride, cookie decorating and, of course, costumed characters of Yogi, Boo-Boo and Cindy. “How does someone born in 2012 know anything about Yogi the Bear?” you may ask. This has taken weeks of training him with 8-minute YouTube clips of Yogi. At the park, my favorite activity name was the “Hey, Hey, Hay Ride.” You have to read that in your head in your best Yogi voice as in “Hey, hey Boo-Boo!”
The campground was just about right across the street from Opry Mills and the Grand Ole Opry — a far cry from the rural parts of West Tennessee and Kentucky where we had been. Jess took advantage of the location to run errands at the Opry Mills Outlet among other places and get a few things for her brother’s upcoming wedding.
They also checked out Nashville’s Adventure Science Center. The museum was free with our reciprocal membership to the Tellus Museum in Georgia (thanks Mom and Dad!), but was well worth the trip. While Braden didn’t slow down enough to learn from many of the exhibits, he had a great time climbing and sliding through a big-scale human heart and backbone.
We finally broke our streak of more than two weeks without a restaurant and got Chick-Fil-A one afternoon in Nashville.
That brings me to my next stop, back in Chattanooga.
We got back to Chattanooga as everyone was heading to Middle Tennessee for the CMA Music Festival in Nashville and for Bonnaroo in Manchester. Jess and I are thinking we’re going to try Bonnaroo next year. Since we have an RV, why not, right?
We spent about 36 hours in Chattanooga at Jess’s parents second home, which was enough to see our friend Beverly and co-worker Patrick. Most of the rest of the time was spent washing two-weeks of clothes and driving the RV to Camping World for them to fix the malfunctioning backup camera.
Our vehicle repairs did not stop there, however. Our Honda Fit tow vehicle got a flat tire less than a mile from my parent’s house in Powder Springs, Ga (west of Atlanta). And when I say flat, I mean shredded and riding on the rim before we noticed.
Turning off the main highway (US 278) onto the small road that leads to their neighborhood, the tire monitoring system alerted me that the pressure in the front passenger tire of the Fit had dropped to 24 PSI. It’s supposed to be 32 PSI and I had it set to alert me if it dropped below 25 PSI. Seeing it was 24 PSI and that we were 2.1 miles from my parents house, I planned to check the tire when we got to their driveway.
What I didn’t notice was that somewhere in the next 1.9 miles or so that 24 dropped to 0. The tire went flat and shredded into two pieces. I’m sorry loyal blog readers that I did not get a photo, but it was bad. The scary thing was that the RV showed no signs that it was pulling a three-wheeled car. We rode on the rim for probably a mile. There’s a nice white streak on the freshly paved street showing the exact route from where the tire shredded to where we stopped in the neighborhood 300 yards from my parents house because we heard a horrible grinding noise. When we checked, the tire was mostly gone.
We unhitched the car and RV to move the camper the last 300 yards and after a jack, twisting a few lug nuts and a trip to the tire shop with my dad, we were back in business. I tested the tire by taking the Honda to a bachelor-weekend Braves game and the Varsity. As usual this year, the Braves lost 8-2, but the chili dogs and company were excellent.
Compared to that, our stop in Wrens to see Jess’s family en route to Myrtle Beach was uneventful, but nice. While there, we enjoyed Ed’s speciality home-made ice cream, a dip in the pool and visits from Jess’s soon-to-be-married brother, aunts and grandmother.
On to Myrtle Beach!
Number of Yogi statues at Jellystone: 4
Numbers of ladies we saw do a spawling face-plant by the side of the pool: 1
Number of Luke Bryan songs we heard in Nashville: Too many. One is too many.
Price of several of the RVs in the Nashville Campground: $200,000+