Monday, June 29, 2015

Long Days of Touring

We were up and out by 8:45 Monday heading to the Louisville Slugger factory.  We spent time in the museum area until our tour time was called.  We had the best tour guide who was funny, knowledgeable and so kind to the children making sure they were always in front to be able to see.  After the museum and tour we spent a little more time in another area until the film was played again.  On our way out we received a miniature Louisville Slugger bat.  So now we have four!

It is hard to see but in the stripes, all the names appear.

From there we went to the Colonel Sanders Museum at the Yum headquarters.  He had an interesting life and was certainly a self-made man who had to reinvent himself at age 65.  They had a remarkably life like mannekin who talked to you when you first enter.  He even made eye contact!  

Our next stop was Locust Grove, historic home to Wm. and Lucy Croghan, sister to Geo. Rogers Clark who founded Louisville and captured the Northwest Territory from the British.  Their other brother was William Clark of Lewis and Clark exploration fame.

The house was built in 1790 on 55 acres.  The recently restored interior reflects the taste and wealth of the Croghans.  We again had a great docent who gave the four of us a 75 minute private tour instead of the standard 45 minute one.  She also knew her stuff and was a delight.

By this time we had missed the 2:00 tour at Hadley Pottery so we went to lunch since we were all starving.  We needed to make a stop at Walmart, get gas and make one more stop at the shoe store.  I found one more pair of shoes and Tom found two.  

Our last day in this area found us in Bardstown at Barton Distillery.  You can smell the sour mash all over town.  We have visited several of these in the past but always learn and see something new each time.  Today it was the "white dog" alcohol coming off the coils at 125+ proof that will be put into the charred barrels for 4-8 years.  A glassful was pulled off for us to smell and taste but a sniff was good enough for me!  Back at the tasting I turned down the Barton 1792, an 8 year bourbon but did taste the Chocolate Bourbon Ball Creme Liquor.  It has a much bigger kick than Bailey's and Ted bought a bottle, so did Tom who also bought a bottle of Barton's 1792.

We went into town to eat at Mammy's.  I ordered the Baby Brown which is a small Kentucky Hot Brown.  If you don't know what that is you probably never spent any time in Louisville!  You might want to Google it.  Tom had pinto beans and cornbread and ate every bit of it.  Eileen and Ted had huge salads but ate it all also.  

Next up was My Old Kentucky Home at the state park of the same name.  Stephen Foster was a distant cousin of the Rowan family who lived in the house for three generations and it is rumored he wrote the famous song sung at the Kentucky Derby each year while visiting the Rowans.  He wrote many beautiful songs we still enjoy today but died at the age of 37 all alone in New York City.  His wife, Jeannie with the Light Brown Hair, had left him because of his irresponsibility and drinking.  It seems so many creative people struggle to live what we would call a "normal" life.

Tomorrow we head to Georgetown.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Kentucky Bluegrass

We left right on time for Shepherdsville.  It was a short drive with a stop at Pilot to fill our auxillary tank.  Having been to Grandma's before, Ted knew exactly where to go but we pulled in past the office to get out of the road.  Then he had to back up into the street to make the turn onto Row 1.  I literally had to stand in the street once traffic cleared to keep any more from coming through while he did it.  A motorhome would have to take the time to unhook their car before they could back up!  Luckily Tom stopped on the street and waited to turn.  I guess maybe if the flea market isn't going on there isn't much traffic but Saturday there was.  It just isn't the best arrangement.

Once we were set up we headed to 6pm, the shoe store.  Unfortunately they were closed due to a power failure, fortunately it is the Customer Appreciation weekend so prices are 50% off as usual and then another 40% off that.  Also the sliding color discounts were moved too!  Two years ago we bought 5 pairs of brand name shoes for $110!  They gave us coupons and we will try to go later.

We drove around locating church, the music venue, a Mexican restaurant and the car wash.  Arriving back at the park we decided to leave at 4:30 for church.  Mass was not crowded so parking and seating were easy to find.  Afterwards we went to the restaurant.  We are so used to Spanglish at Mexican restaurants that Ted was amused when he asked for queso on his fajitas and she said  questioningly "you want cheese?"   The food was good and we all cleaned our plates.

From there we went to the Opry for the evening.  This is a 3 hour terrific show with amazing talent.  We received a shout out from the stage for having come all the way from Texas!  Eileen won a $5 gift certificate to a local BBQ place and she gave it to the man sitting in front of us.  Now the $180 split the pot prize she would have kept!  We all really enjoyed the show but 3 hours gets a bit tiresome on the fanny and I for one was glad when it was over so I could get up.

Today we headed to Churchill Downs.  Ted and I toured here several years ago and enjoyed it so much.  Some photos may be repeats but it is such a pretty place.


Flowers at door.

Famous spires.

Winner's Circle only for Derby

Finish Line

Silk colors of American Pharoah, 2015 Derby winner.

Lil E. Tee ridden by Pat Day (with arms raised), the winningest jockey at Churchill Downs.

Inside the Museum

Ted with American Pharoah

I talked Eileen into winning and then this young man.  Maybe I should have been a trainer.

No one had a quarter!

Eileen in the Starting Gate

Eileen and I choosing our hats for the Derby.

We had a fun time.  Besides the museum we had a tour of the track and grounds.  We are about 20 degrees lower than we had been and today was perfect.

After having lunch at Little Sicily we walked the Riverwalk along the Ohio River.  The Belle of Louisville was docked.  Ted and I remember when she would race the Delta Queen many years ago.

We finished the day at the shoe store. But I was the only one who found anything.  I got red canvass shoes and a blue pair of Skechers.  We are going back tomorrow to try again.  They said they get new stock each day.

The Kentucky Derby is billed as the most exciting two minutes in sports. Held every year on the first Saturday in May at the World famous Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky, the most glamorous horse racing event of the year draws spectators from all over the world.

Friday, June 26, 2015

And So It Begins

We were up early for our 8:30 Corvette factory tour.  The last time we took it, the guide was much more knowledgeable and stopped at more work stations.  I guess the crowds are bigger now and they have to move folks along.  

We then went to the museum where the new thing for us was the sinkhole area being repaired and the damaged cars that are on display.  

I couldn't pass up the Procter & Gamble Tide car.

Eileen found two hot dates - Jeff Gordon and Jim Johnson

I had a 1:00 appointment with a chiropractor to see if he could help with my back/butt/calf pain.  I was pretty sure it was a nerve and he agreed.  He gave me a treatment and I was pain free when I left.  Also, he gave me some exercises which is what I was looking for.  I wanted to be sure I was helping and not hindering myself.  My blood pressure was high for me and he wanted me to stop by on Thursday to get it checked.  Hopefully it is nothing more than the long rides, the terrible heat and the stress of the pain I have had intermittently causing poor sleep.  I may need to call Dr. C back home if it persists. 

Ted left to fuel up the truck and go to the grocery.  It was too hot to eat together outside so it was later in the evening when we ventured out.  When it started getting dark the bugs started and we came inside.  I was in bed by 10:00.  The heat is wearing me out.

Thursday we started with a BP check at Dr. W's office and it was the same so I put a call into Dr. C and then we left for Mammoth Cave.  There were no tours we felt we could do left in the reservation system but we went anyway.  Sure enough there was an easy tour they do not take reservations for and we were able to get that one for later in the afternoon.  We visited the museum area and then had a quick bite before our tour.  It wasn't a long or strenuous one, about 80 steps down after a long walk down a hill.  After a mile and a quarter walk there were 80 steps up, and then the hill was a killer!  But we made it.  Last time here, Ted and I did 500 steps up at the end!

Drapery Room, Mammoth Cave

We came home to a nice dinner of steak, asparagus, corn, etc. and then we went to the Bowling  Green Hot Rods minor league ballgame.  They were playing the Dayton Dragons, a Cincinnati farm team.  The park was terrific and for $11 we had seats in the fourth row behind the dugout.  They had so many little games and things that included the kids that you couldn't help but enjoy it.  The fielding was extraordinary and it was a close game with the Dragons winning 3-2.

Friday was my last trip to the chiropractor.  I told him Dr. C said no salt for 3 days and if still high to seek medical attention.  Dr. W said it was pre-hypertension and if I watch my numbers, do my exercises he gave me and watch the salt I should see the numbers coming down.  They had already started getting lower.  The heat, the long rides, the pain have probably all contributed to the numbers getting high in the first place.  The pain in my butt I notice, the high blood pressure not at all but that's the danger in it.

I had put two loads of clothes in the washers at the laundry room before we left.  Eileen was going up to put them in the dryer.  We returned about 15 minutes before the dryers quit so we waited and then folded the clothes.  I had given Eileen one of my Cold Eze containers I use to keep change and took one myself to pay for the laundry; however, I had quarters, she had nickles!  She just turned them all in for quarters and no harm done.  Good thing she has a sense of humor!  Shame on me for not checking.

Once that was all handled we took a ride to Auburn, KY to once again visit the altars and windows at The Fathers of Mercy Divine Mercy Chapel.  It is so beautiful and we had a nice conversation with one of the resident priests about their order and our connection with the altars and things.  My parish church where Ted and I were married donated the high altar, side altars, Communion rail and windows were all donated to the Divine Mercy Chapel by the Archdiocese of Cincinnati.

High Altar

Side altars and lecturn.  I just realized I didn't take a photo of the communion rail!

There are two matching windows.

A display case of relics is prominent in the chapel.

A beautiful view of the countryside when you come out the front doors.

We came home and Ted left to have the truck oil changed.  He called saying it was hailing golf ball size hail where he was!  It rained but gave us enough of a break to eat dinner and stay out until after 8:00.

We leave tomorrow for Shepherdsville KY, a little south of Louisville.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

It Is Always Sad To Say Goodbye

Ron and Karen picked us up for 8:00 Mass on Sunday.  It was a quick one, over in 45 minutes.  We went back to the breakfast room of the motel and pretty much took it over.  I kept Jemma in her baby seat while Brian and Laura got their food and Jameson's.  A gentleman asked "How many of you are there?"  When I told him 95 he said "Oh my!"  I think the other patrons knew they were fighting a losing battle trying to get a table.

We stayed at our table and said goodbye to each group as they left except for Keith.  Each time we said goodbye he was back in 5 minutes to tell someone else goodbye.  After several times of doing this, Ted asked if he was running for sheriff.  Ted said he was working the room like a politician!  Eventually all that were leaving did so and the rest of us went to our rooms or RV.

We didn't eat breakfast, just had coffee and juice, because we were going to the Apple Barn for lunch with Karen and Ron, with Tom and Eileen from Florida joining us.  They had arrived the day before but stayed in an RV park closer to the highway.  The apple fritters they give you free as an appetizer are wonderful but I only ate one!  Tom's salad would have fed four of us!  I had a trio of a small pot pie, small dish of chicken and dumplings and a small breast.  My three smalls equaled a very nice lunch.  We returned to the park and spent some time at the pool for awhile before calling it a day.

We were up early Monday because Howard, our old neighbor and Ted's best friend while we lived in Florida last time, was coming from Chuckey TN to visit.  Tom and Eileen were coming over too.  We had a great visit and I fixed lunch for all of us.  Howard's wife Nancy has MS and the drive and heat would have been too much for her.  When they all left late in the afternoon, we went back to the pool.  Joe had the leftover ribs and chicken from the catered meal so we ate with them in their suite.  We said our goodbyes and headed to our RV for our last night there.

We packed up to leave by 8:00 Tuesday morning but we had to back out of our site because there just wasn't enough room to turn and pull out.  The park is laid out nicely but not with enough room for bigger rigs.  We kept the truck parked in overflow parking so we could put out our slide and get in and out the door.   We signaled Tom as we went by their park and he pulled out behind us.

We arrived in Bowling Green a little after noon because we moved back into CDT.  We had some trouble setting up because the site is unlevel.  Our leveling system couldn't get the front right side level so Ted had to hook up and move the RV around a bit.  Second time worked.  When both rigs were settled we left for Sam's, Brands and Camping World.

Sam's didn't have goetta which didn't surprise me, we are too far south still.  Eileen's neighbor wants some.  Ted bought several shirts at Brands and I get some more Vasserette underwear.  Tom needed new landing jack pads because his old ones were crushed when the ground was so wet the legs kept   coming down.  With all the shopping done we headed home in the awful heat.  Eileen and I both fell asleep when we went inside our rigs.  Eventually Ted grilled a tenderloin and we put together dinner.  It was so hot we put a fan out on the patio while we ate.

We have an 8:30 Corvette tour on Wednesday so I showered and washed my hair this evening.  I don't want to rush in the morning!

The best thing about a heat wave is constantly having the illusion you're getting exercise.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Big Day in Pigeon Forge

I spent most of Saturday around the pool visiting with everyone.  Ted and Brandon went shooting in Gatlinburg and before you knew it, it was time to get ready for dinner.  Happy hour was at 6, dinner at 7.

Lily, Jameson and Noah


Some of the Moschel's


This meal was catered and was a big hit.  Everything tasted so good.  Also, it was nice not to have to prepare, serve and clean up.  We took time afterwards to take group pictues.  Ted and I joined the Connecticut Ruhes so we weren't just a family of two!

The Don Ruhe family

The Joe Ruhe family

The Karen Ruhe Woulms family

The Joe Homer family

The Dan Ruhe family

The Ted Ruhe (Connecticut) and Coletta Ruhe (Texas) families

The Rhonda Ruhe Klawitter family

Pretty soon social groups popped up.

The jewelry beaders.

Euchre group

Texas Hold 'Em group.  Ted was the dealer at the end and Tim won the stakes.

At 11:30 we came home because we were going to church at 8 a.m.