The RV park in Asheville, NC did not have space for us for the 4th of July holiday so Robert had made reservations just over the mountains in Tennessee near Gatlinburg. We were ready to leave by then anyway. We felt bad that while our friends were visiting we happened to be
staying at one of the worst RV Parks we'd stayed at. They were not kid or dog friendly and watched us like hawks. We felt like we had the Gestapo breathing down our necks at every turn. We were ready to leave and the Smokey Bear campground in Gatlinburg was exactly what we needed. It was kid friendly, dog friendly and adult friendly too. They had a great pool, great playground with a basketball court and all sorts of activities planned for the 4th of
From the earliest hours of arriving we knew this place was exactly what we needed. It had lots of big trees in between the campsites for a woodsy feel and privacy and it just felt good to be there. The first night they had a wonderful female duo, The Cinnamon Girls, giving us a private campground concert. We all pulled our chairs up in front of the main office and we listened and swayed to the music. I could feel the stress of the last few weeks just drip off of me with each song they sang. It was great. The Cinnamon Girls had two very distinct voices and had wonderful harmony together. We bought their CD and have been listening to it a lot. Their website is www.cinnamongirls.net check them out. The concert started the whole weekend out right.
The rest of the weekend was fabulous too. We spent a day driving through the Smokey Mountains National Park seeing the beautiful Smokey Mountains in their full smokey glory from a recent rain fall. We did a lot of hiking in beautiful natural settings, our favorite thing to
do. To celebrate the 4th of July, Robert found a firework show at a local fairgrounds and we went there with our chairs and tried to blend in with the locals to watch the fire works. They may not have even known we were from a whole other country, I mean state! This was the first place where we did feel like we were in a whole other country. The difference from Southern California to Eastern Tennessee is much bigger than we've felt yet.
The kids had all sorts of questions about where the fire works would be, why they needed the fire truck, where the bathrooms were, you know, they kept us busy answering their constant barrage of questions. You'd think we'd be used to it by now but it still always seems to surprise us with how much these kids can talk, NON-STOP!! But, it is also amazing how once the fire works start, the kids shut up and just watch. We always enjoy a good fire works show and this was no different.
After one pass up the main drag in Gatlinburg, we decided it was too much like Myrtle Beach or Las Vegas, lots of tourist trap! So we avoided it like the plague, taking the bypass road whenever possible.
We had to leave the Smokey Bear Campground early, just when we were making some new friends, to drive to Cookeville, TN to have some work done on our trailer. We had an appointment Monday morning after the 4th weekend. We had to keep the appointment and they are not always easy to get. Oh well, these things are important too. They have to be done I guess. We can't have fun all the time, Can we?
We drove to the Cookeville Wal-Mart and spent the night there. While the trailer was getting some attention there wasn't much to do in Cookeville. I wouldn't recommend going there unless you absolutely have to. Robby and I did a double feature at the movies while Robert and Baylee drove around keeping cool in the truck's A/C. We also found the one and only city park and read some Hardy Boys. Other than that once the trailer was finished we quickly made tracks for NASHVILLE, TN! Whoo Hoo! Now there is one great place. I'll write about that later. Joss