Sunday, April 3, 2011

A Cure for Cabin Fever

Well I didn't have any camping planned for this weekend, but I woke up early Saturday morning to a gorgeous day and thought "why waste this gorgeous day on housework?".  Made a quick trip to the store for a few supplies then called the goddess to tell her to load up.  Oops!  What was I thinking.  It's spring and everything is blooming and she has her annual hayfever/allergies/sinus attack/maybe turns into bronchitis attack.  I swear that girl should move to the desert.  So Gus and I had to go it alone.

Since it was just me and the dog I decided to take a trip through my childhood and headed east on highway 70 then north on 109 into Gallatin, TN.  Spent a lot of my youth in Gallatin and Lebanon where my 2 sets of grandparents lived.  Most of the 60s my Pa Wade was sherrif of Sumner County and I would spend my summers at their house on the highway.  I never really knew it was highway 25 - guess you never care when you're a kid - but today when I turned off 109 onto 25 the memories came flooding back.  Hard to believe that was 40 years ago and a much gentler time.  Little Granny & Big Pa's house (yes, she was about 4'9" and he was well over 6' and at least 350#) is still there though the neighborhood around it has changed drastically.  Still, it conjured up a melancholy feeling. 

Pulled into Bledsoe Creek State Park around 10am and found that it was about half full what with the gorgeous weather and all my fellow "cabin fever" sufferers.  Lots of bass boats on the water so there must be a bass tournament in the area.  Decided right then that I didn't want a spot near the water.  Those guys run and gun up the lake too much for me!  Found a great pull through site not far from the bathhouse and in the trees but sort of on a hill so that I could see the water in the distance.  Only water and electric to hook up but got set up pretty quick even without the goddess to help.  Called Betsy, my friend from Navy days who lives in Lebanon, and invited her to join me for a campfire dinner, then did the right thing:  opened the windows to let the breezes blow through and stretched out on the couch with a good book and a good dog.  Was asleep in no time and slept till 2:00!

Gus and I took a 3 mile walk along a loop trail that ran near the water.  I could see where the flooding had been this time last year.  Actually the water is up pretty high right now and I had to skirt some muddy places on the trail.  Gus didn't care as long as we were on the trail.  Got back to camp and started the fire so that when Betsy arrived we were sitting by the fire trying to read that book again.  We had a good visit and a great supper - sorry, I forgot to take pix - of jerk chicken and a tossed green salad.  I cooked too much of course so repeat for supper tonight.  Yeah!  First time me and Bets have had a chance to just sit and visit for a long while and of course since we were both in the Navy and both work in education now, it was a lot of shop talk.  It was also her first visit to Horizon Seeker and she was excited.  She's decided to take a 3 day trip to Louisville with me and the Goddess in April so that's going to be fun!

After my company left I pour the last of the wine in a glass and curled up with that book and dog on the couch again.  I said to myself, "Self, we'll just read a little while and then put on some pj's and fold the bed out.  When I woke up at midnight it was all I could do to get into the pj's so the couch didn't get folded out.  Still sleeps good that way too!

This morning I woke up around 4 and thought I heard a donkey braying.  Went to the bathroom and crawled back under my cover to doze a while but an hour later I'm sure I heard that donkey again.  This time I got up and got dressed.  It was barely light out but Gus and I went walking around the campground for his morning rounds and to look for that donkey.  Never did find him.  Oh well.  By 7am I'd had breakfast and closed up the camp.  Stopped at the dump station to empty tanks and then headed a little further north to the historic site where Bledsoe's fort was located.  Too bad none of that was in the park.

Gus and I walked for over 2 hours at the fort/park.  We had the whole place to ourselves and the sun was warm and Gus kept rolling in the grass and hiking his leg on every tree.  I knew that this was the site of an old fort/inn during the longhunter days and that they frequently have living history days there.  But it was really neat to roam around the old buildings by myself too.  The local unit of Sons of the Confederacy keep up the place as well as the local historical society so it's really nice but not overly done up.  Loved walking up the old Holston Road and found the Bledsoe cemetery (again forgot to take pix).  Also found a naval connection I never knew (and I'm from this neck of the woods).

So this part is for my brother Mike who has plans to visit Charleston, SC this spring.  Among other things he plans to see the Hunley which was a small submarine that played a key role in the naval history of the Civil War.  My dear husband was a huge fan of the Hunley and watched anxiously as they raised it from the briny depths and restored it for us to see.  Yes, we went to Charleston just to see the Hunley.  But what I learned today, Mike (which maybe you already knew) is that Hunley was from Bledsoe Creek.  I took a picture of the marker to prove it.  And since you and me are both Navy vets I think that's kind of a cool connection.  Hope you enjoy Charleston!  As for me, well, it's back to the house to clean out the rv and wash clothes for school.  Only 8 more weeks!

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