Saturday, December 31, 2011
Today, New Year's Eve, we decided to go to Tupelo, Mississippi for the day about 50 miles from Red Bay. Tupelo is most famous for being the birthplace of Elvis Presley so our first stop was at this birthplace.
We paid the fee of $10.00 each (senior rate) that allowed us to tour a museum, the house that Elvis was born, and the church that Elvis attended while living in Tupelo.
The house is a 2-room, bedroom and kitchen, house that his father built. Elvis was born in the house and lived there until his family moved to Memphis when he was 13 years old.
The Assembly of God church building was the church that Elvis attended and now has a video presentation of the church as it was in his day. His pastor is credited with teaching Elvis to play the guitar.
The museum had some memorilabilia of Elvis and pictures of his family.
Interesting visit without all the hoopla that is seen in Graceland in Memphis. We then had lunch at Romie's Barbeque restaurant, a good choice. Tom and I both had smoked turkey but with different sides. Tom had onion rings that were freshly made, not the frozen prepared ones that most places have. The baked beans, cole slaw, and potato salad were also made in house. We ended our day in Tupelo by going to the movies to see "War Horse", a movie that both of us enjoyed. Returning back to the motorhome in Red Bay we had a light supper and are now waiting for the new year as we have been hearing gunshots and fireworks being fired all evening long- obviously, somebodies are celebrating.
Friday, December 30, 2011
Thursday, the 29th, was Tom's 66th birthday. I had planned to cook something other than oatmeal for breakfast but I slept late and we had some traveling to do. So after eating oatmeal we got on the road about 9:30am. We traveled around Chattanooga, Tn. on I-24 that cut through a small section of Georgia, back to Tennnessee and then we picked up state rte.72 until we were west of Huntville where we caught a rte. 24 to Red Bay- 209 miles. The day started out being sunny with a few clouds but as we were circling around Chattanooga and the lakes associated with the Tennessee river we had spells of fog, not dense but somewhat distance impairing
We arrived in Red Bay, Alabama about 1pm, central time- we gained an hour. Finding the Alegro Campground, the Tiffin company campground, was not a problem in this small town. There were a few, maybe 10, motorhomes on the premises so we had no problems securing a site. The factory is closed this week and is due to open on January 3,2012. Not having an appointment we will be here awaiting our turn and hope to get away before next weekend. After setting up we drove the Jeep into the town for lunch at the Backstreet Barbeque, nothing fancy but the food was good and servings ample. Being towed behind the motorhome from Maryland, the Jeep was in need of a good car wash which was done after lunch. Red Bay is in the northwest area of Alabama probably within a mile of the Mississippi line. It is warmer here in the upper 50's-lower 60's dropping down into the lower 40's at night.
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Tom and I had a wonderful Christmas. On Christmas eve we attended candle light church services at our church. Christmas day we went down to Virginia to spend the day with Todd, Beth and our 4 grandchildren. Todd and Beth prepared a wonderful meal of prime rib, baked potatoes and broccoli and cauliflower medley. I added to the meal with cream of crab soup. Rhubarb/strawberry pie, made by Beth, was dessert but no one was able to eat dessert after the meal so we were given pie to take home.
On Monday the 26th Tom and I finished packing things into the motorhome and then on Tuesday we left Taneytown about 9:30am heading south for warmer weather. The morning was very gray and chilly and just as we finished hooking the Jeep to the motorhome it began to sprinkle rain. Rain continued most of the day and we found the motorhome to be harder to heat with the front heaters then our old motorhome. We eventually started the generator to get heat in the motorhome. Traveling down I-81 through Virginia we stopped at a rest area to eat a bite of lunch. As I was preparing egg salad a Phaeton motorhome pulled in ahead of us. Tom said look what just pulled in and then we both said is that Bill and Rita (Fordham), friends from our Traveling Americans camping club. Sure enough that was exactly who was in the motorhome. Bill and Rita came back to our motorhome and we visited a short time and then discussed where we might stop for the night. Rita called Fort Chiswell RV park, a park that Tom and I had stayed at a couple of times, and found out they were open and had sites so we agreed to camp there for the night. Bill and Rita headed on down the road before us as they had already eaten their lunch. When we pulled in at the campground the Fordham’s were not there and we were a little surprised. We did know that they were having a problem with an awning but we didn’t see them in our travels. But shortly afterwards, they did finally arrive and, yes, they had to stop shortly after our meeting at the rest stop to secure an awning that was unfurling. After we ate our evening meals we went over to the Fordham’s and visited. We had traveled 311 miles. Even though it was a chilly evening we felt comfortable de-winterizing the motorhome and taking some water on board- some years it has been much too cold to do that until we were further south.
This morning Tom and I slept a little later than usual. Just as I was raising the front night shade I saw Bill and Rita pulling out about 8 am. Our travels today were taking us in a little different direction from the Fordham’s- they were headed for Casa Grande, Arizona and we are headed for Red Bay, Alabama before going to Arizona. About 9 am we got underway from the campground but then we stopped for gas and propane at a Flying J’s a few miles down I-81. We then continued on through Virginia to Tennessee where we picked up I-40 to I-75 to Chattanooga. We are staying at the Holiday Trav-L park in Chattanooga tonight. Chalked up 297 miles today. Starting out this morning it was still cloudy and through Virginia there was a skiff of snow on the hillsides that had fallen during the night. The wind had blown most of the night and continued this morning. As we continued south the skies became clearer and the wind calmed. It is a little warmer in Tennessee tonight, temperatures near 50 degrees.
Sunday, December 18, 2011
We had a very nice Thanksgiving in Virginia at our son, Todd, and daughter-in-law, Beth's house. Beth's parents came down from New York also to celebrate Thanksgiving. As with most Thanksgivings, there was too much food consumed.
On December 11th we went to Pa. to have a family Christmas gathering at Leah's brother Larry's. Like most parties, there was a lot of good food consumed by everyone.
Our granddaughter, Madeline, turned 12 on December 14th, so we gave her some presents for her birthday. Next year will be big years for her and Anthony as they enter their teenage years.
On the 14th I drove the fire engine around town with Santa Claus. He was double checking addresses and his naughty and nice list before making his rounds on Christmas Eve.
It will not be long after Christmas that we will leave Maryland for warmer places in our motorhome. Our first stop will be in Red Bay, Al to have some warranty work done at the Tiffin factory. We have purchased a new 2011 Tiffin Phaeton in late September and like most new motorhomes, there always seems like there are a few bugs to be worked out. After the factory stop, we will continue on south towards the Gulf of Mexico and than head west to Arzonia.