2022 Pigeon Forge Honeymoon trip

Since I started working at NSWC Crane in 1985 I was always under the assumption I would work for 40 years and retire in 2025 at age 62. Retiring at age 62 would give me a 10% bonus to my pension (called FERS or Federal Employee Retirement System) and I could start drawing Social Security from the start of retirement. As I neared my 36th year at work, however, I began to rethink this strategy. Many of my long-time workmates began to retire. As I heard them discuss their plans I started actually running the financial numbers on retiring earlier than I had planned. The difference wasn't that much. Hmmmmmmmm.

Another influence was Covid. Because of Covid we had been able to telework since March 2020. Working from home was wonderful. No commute...being home all day with Donna and Buford...not buying a tank of gas every week...not having to be somewhere by a certain time. It was a foreshadowing of retirement and I loved it. One of my coworkers, Rob, did financial planning as a hobby (second job?). His goal was to retire the day he was eligible. He spent 30+ years working towards that goal. Like me, he was overweight, suffered from sleep issues most of his adult life, and was diabetic. He was a couple years short of his retirement goal when he died suddenly of a heart attack. I thought about that a lot.

I worked with Joe Dang for 35 years and very closely for the last twenty. Work seemed odd when he retired in March 2021. After much consideration and deliberation I decided to retire in July 2022. My Goldwing travel buddy, Mike Padgett, had planned to retire in May 2022, but found he was eligible to retire in January, which he did. It's sad to look at the empty office of someone you've looked forward to seeing daily for many, many years. It would be a lonely several months.

I told Donna when I retired she could also if she wanted, so that was the plan. Donna and I had started going out on June 25th, so we decided to get married on June 25th before my retirement. That way she could be included with my insurance and retirement and, after many happy years together...it was time. Well, IU Health had different ideas. After telling the ambulance dispatchers their jobs were secure the lying, scum-sucking bastards suddenly shut down the dispatch department on October 1, 2021. The dispatchers could keep their jobs if they wanted to drive to the new dispatch center in Indianapolis every day...which was stupid and insulting. Donna got to retire nine months earlier than she expected. Since she no longer had insurance we decided to get married earlier than planned, and November 12th became our new anniversary.

We decided to wait until after the holidays to go on a honeymoon in Pigeon Forge. Donna had always wanted to go there in the wintertime. Shortly before Christmas I got an email from one of the rental agencies in Pigeon Forge. If we rented a cabin on Christmas Day they would give a 50% discount. That got the honeymoon planning started. I quickly found the 50% discount only applied to certain cabins and it seemed like they doubled the base price and then gave a discount. Plus all the exorbitant extra fees. ~10-15 years ago we liked to rent from the big rental agencies but it seems in recent years they have become overly expensive and a little shady with their 'deals'. I like staying on Bluff Mountain but due to concerns about possible winter weather we picked a cabin more local to Pigeon Forge. We decided to go in early February.

February 2

Our honeymoon vacation day has arrived and we were ready. There was a winter storm on the horizon (literally). Donna and I had both gotten Covid the day after Christmas and we were down for 2 1/2 weeks...then I slipped on some ice and sprained my knee. Most of January was wasted due to all this. I was ready to be healthy and have some quality time with my Sweetheart. Even though this would be a Sequoia trip I am a motorcyclist at heart so the route will be mostly non-interstate and include some antique store stops.

Our boy at his lookout post.

Whenever we start packing Buford knows something is up. He starts following us around and giving us a sad look. Donna's mom is coming over to stay with him and watch the house. Buford will be spoiled and in good hands. There won't be any little kids or other dogs to annoy him.

Bedford, IN. 8:49, initial mileage 101,899 - As mentioned earlier there is a winter storm headed this way. It has been raining this morning but the temperatures are dropping. We'll be glad to head south away from the ice and snow. We stopped at Revere's for fuel and some drinks.

We took our normal route through Paoli and down US150 towards Louisville. Nearing Galena I mentioned being a little hungry so Donna suggested the bakery next to the convenience store we often stop at. I got a jelly-filled roll. Mmmmmmmmmm.

Traffic hasn't been bad but the rain and road spray are a little annoying. There was construction on the I-64 Ohio River bridge so traffic was a little disturbed. I have been watching dashcam videos on Youtube so I am on the alert for poor drivers. One idiot passed us only to dart across our front and take an exit. There was no one behind us but the guy felt the need to be a racecar driver.

It was nice to cross into a different state with your whole vacation in front of you.

Our first antique stop will be at the Peddler's Mall in Bardstown. It was on the list of places to visit on our fall 2020 motorcycle trip but we ran out of time.

My Sweetie prowling the halls of the mall. I enjoy watching her search. She is looking for action figures for her grandson. She found a couple here. Vendor malls aren't my favorite place. I prefer a real antique store. There is a lot of repetition in the malls. Plenty of stuff bought from a catalog...Hot Wheels cars, diecast NASCAR items, cheap tools. You'll see these in several different booths and it is annoying.

We continued our drive down US150 to Danville and the Vendor's Village. On the way we passed through Perryville and I remembered going to a nice antique store there. When we arrived at the Vendor's Village I got a sense of deja vu but wasn't sure. (It turns out we had been there before). All we got here was a dog toy.

By now it was afternoon and I asked Donna about lunch. She suggested a nearby McDonalds. We pulled over and ate in a mall parking lot. Kind of cozy...in a warm vehicle in the rain with the wife. We both got the same thing...double cheeseburger, french fries, and a coke. No onions for Donna, though. She used to hate even the smell of coffee. Now she drinks it every day. I tell her that one day she'll start liking onions, too, but she disagrees.

At Stanford we took US27 south towards Somerset. Waiting at a stoplight on the north end of Somerset I saw some lights in the woods. Train! The tracks ran beside the road to the antique store so we got to see the whole train. The line through here is a main line for Norfolk Southern and they do crew changes in Somerset. The North 27 Antique Mall was the best store of the day. They actually had real antiques. I got a camera case that I will try as a toiletry bag. We'll see how it works out.

Somerset is the city of a thousand stoplights and none of them seem to be in time. South of Somerset is a scenic drive. We saw a couple trains waiting on sidings, but never saw the train they were waiting for. We passed an abandoned Huddle House. We had stopped there on one of our motorcycle trips with the Potter/Kurdziolek gang. We passed the turn to Cumberland Falls we have visited a few times before. Plenty of memories on this road. At Helenwood we turned east on KY-297. We passed over a couple railroad lines that didn't look very used...in this area probably related to coal. We joined I-75 north of Caryville. About 20 miles later we were at Knoxville. I had plotted a course through Knoxville via US441. The GPS said to stay on I-75, which I did, which ended up being the wrong way.

West Haven, TN. 17:16, mileage 102,208 - We pulled off at the West Haven exit and got some fuel. The gas-hogging Sequoia has gotten 17.7 mpg on the way down. Not bad for the big V8 beast. It didn't take long to find our way back to US441 and a familiar route through Knoxville. I prefer this route over the standard route to Pigeon Forge. It's more scenic and usually less congested. There was some traffic due to rush hour, but not bad. There is one spot where you drive over a hill and are greeted with a beautiful mountain view.

If you have followed my motorcycle travels the past few years you know the Garmin 276CX GPS I use has an annoying habit of recalculating the route given the smallest deviation from the inputted route. On the motorcycle GPS I have turned off the 'recalculate' option. Not so on the one in the Sequoia. The inputted route was supposed to take us to Sevierville and down. I knew the GPS was up to its old tricks when it wanted us to turn onto Whites School Road and Goose Gap Road.

It wasn't a big deal. I've been on these roads many times. They are very curvy and great for motorcycles. The only issue now is it is rainy and, since it is February...dark. Goose Gap is a main rural artery in the area and heavily traveled so there were a lot of cars to watch out for. Some like to take their half out of the middle. Eventually we made our way to US321 at Wears Valley. There are two ways to get to our cabin. A short one and a longer, curvy one with multiple turns. Guess which one the GPS had recalculated us for? Rain, darkness, and bunches of construction made it hard to find our road using the GPS. In fact, the construction is so new the road isn't even in the GPS data yet. A Google search added some clarity to our confusion and soon we were at our cabin.

The cabin is on a cul-de-sac with several other cabins. There was plenty of parking and privacy. The cabin we rented was 1 bedroom, 2 bath. Convenient. We unpacked and lounged around. One of lingering aspects of Covid that we have experienced is fatigue. We both tire much easier than we used to. It felt good to relax.

Later that evening we wandered into town to see what we could find to eat. Near the US321/US441 intersection we happened upon a Publix store where we could get some supplies. Next door was a Popeyes so we picked up some food for supper. I love their red beans and rice.

Our Day 1 travels. 345 miles.

February 3

The view from our deck. The mountain in the distance is Bluff Mountain. We have stayed there several times. We decided not to stay there this time because of the weather. It would be a treacherous place to be in ice or snow. Even the relatively mild approach to this cabin could be difficult in bad weather.

Rain is predicted for today and tomorrow. We have decided those will be 'driving around' days, so I have mapped some antique stores to visit to anchor our route. As always, anything else we find is fair game. Today's adventure will take us on a westernly route.

Our first stop was just down the road at Yesterday's Antiques. A trend we will see is the prices at the stores in the area are higher than normal and the selection seems kind of generic.

Our next stop was still near Pigeon Forge at the Antique Mall. They had a cafe that would have made a nice brunch stop, but the grille was broken.

There were several small roller coaster things in the area. Here is one under construction. The roads seem extremely steep...especially with the rain and mud.

Next we moved down to Wears Valley. This place was supposed to be Antiques of Wears Valley but is now more of a gift shop.

Our next stop was the Wears Valley General Store. We thought it was worth looking around. I bought a Nehi orange soda pop here. It was tasty. I saved the bottle as a momento.

Our last stop in Wears Valley was the Bears Valley Antiques. This place seemed to have a lot of furniture. So far we haven't bought anything.

I'm always impressed of the views of the mountains here. Some are still dusted with snow and the mist adds a little more 'smoke' to them.

Leaving here we will cover some new ground. A few years ago another section of the Foothills Parkway was completed. It terminates here at Wears Valley. Of the three sections of the Foothills Parkway I have ridden this is the curviest and most scenic. It would be great on a motorcycle.

Back on US321 we came to the Rivermill Antique Mall in Melrose. It was a good-sized store. We thought since it was away from Pigeon Forge the selection might be better and prices more reasonable. No.

The rain has increased and is hiding the mountains in the distance. Something we find everywhere now are Dollar General stores. This place was no exception.

Our final antique store on this route was the Antique Outlet Mall across the road. There were no action figures, Pyrex, or diecast trucks found. It was lunch time and Applebees sounded good. The GPS said there was one in Alcoa just north of Marysville. We were off!

It took awhile to work our way through Marysville. There was a bunch of road construction on US129. This Applebees was near the airport. I try to take pictures of our stops for my later recollection. Due to the cold and rain Donna has learned to leave me behind.

Ahhhhh...wonton tacos...our favorite appetizer. I had steak and shrimp with mashed potatoes and green beans. It was delicious. No leftovers.

It was still early when we finished lunch but we had visited all our planned stops. There were some antique places north of Sevierville we had planned to go to tomorrow. We could visit some of those. TN-168 looked like a good road to take to bypass Knoxville. However, I never saw a sign or turn off for it. Probably due to all the road construction. We ended up taking the interstate through Knoxville by default.

Near the intersection of I-40 and TN-66 is the Great Smokies Flea Market. It is a huge building. A great place to walk off part of our delicious lunch. It is open 9-5 but what we didn't notice at first was it is only open Friday-Sunday. Today is Thursday. One of the vendors pointed that out to us. Drats.

There was another place down the road called "Antiques at the Fort". We were able to find the "Fort", but there were no antiques. Zero for two this afternoon.

We decided to try another place north of the river called "Estate Antiques and Collectibles". We were unprepared for it to be on the east side of the road and had to do a U-turn. By this time Donna had an urgent need for a bathroom break. The 'no public restrooms' sign on the door was a disappointment. We got about 50 feet inside the store when Donna said that wasn't gonna work.

We went across the highway to a Dollar General store much to Donna's relief. She also picked up a few items while she was there. Back at the antique store she was able to browse in peace, although it didn't turn up anything worth buying. We went next door and she got some CBD products for her back & neck pain.

By now it was later in the afternoon. We decided to make our way back to the cabin with one more stop. The vacation tradition...Walmart. We have already found the need for more bath towels and wash rags. We also bought a nice furry blanket. One of us (cough...Donna) tends to be a cover hog.

That evening we tried out the hottub. It was nice but afterwards I felt very overheated. That was my last time in the hottub.

Our Day 2 travels. 84 miles.

February 4

The plan on our last predicted rain day is to check out the antique stores north of Sevierville. There are a bunch. Some I had in the GPS. Some I didn't. We would go old school and check them out as we found them.

The first stop was Parkway Antiques & Collectibles. Donna got a metal sunflower thingy here.

The next store we were looking for was Tudor House Antiques & Collectibles. We found a couple Tudor style buildings but none that appeared to have any antiques.

Heartland Antiques was the next stop. Rain and drizzle was the weather report for the day. Funny story. They have an upstairs. As Donna started up the stairs her foot caught the first step. She had her hands in her coat pockets and couldn't catch herself as she fell. The look on her face was priceless. She eventually stopped her fall with her elbow. It was so funny. I laughed...and laughed...and laughed. I laughed so much by the time I reached the top of the stairs I was dizzy. Bless her heart. In her defense, the first stair tread was taller than the rest. I'm still laughing about that. What made it even funnier was the night before she had stubbed her toe on the bed. When she tripped on the stairs she stubbed the same toe again.

As we worked our way north we stopped at the Flea Traders Paradise. Donna got some bath bombs here. I'm still laughing about her fall.

Action Antiques was one of the more antiquey places we found. A breath of fresh air from all the China mart stuff and junk nobody buys. They had a pulley set like I had found in Arkansas, but they wanted a lot more for it. Go figure.

They had this neat rear clip from a Trans Am. Given the price I doubt they sell it anytime soon.

Since it was Friday we were able to finally enter the Great Smokies Flea Market. This was a huge place and we seemed to walk forever. Donna has a watch that measures that stuff but I don't remember what it was. All she bought there was a belt.

As we worked our way back south we came to Memory Lane Antiques. This was an okay place. They had a lot of glassware junk. A couple doors down was Olden Days Antiques & Collectibles. We walked there. It was nothing to write home about.

After all the walking we had done it was time for lunch. Donna thought chinese sounded good. She did a search and came up with the No. 1 Chinese restaurant. We went there. It was a buffet and the food was great. We left stuffed.

On the way to the Chinese restaurant we had passed a large antique mall which ended up being the Green Olde Deal Antique Mall. We didn't find anything interesting here. This was the last antique store for the day and our feet were feeling it. We decided to head back to the cabin.

You can tell it is the weekend in Pigeon Forge as the traffic has increased. We spent the evening lounging around and had leftovers for supper. Tomorrow is supposed to be dry so we plan to do some shopping.

Our Day 3 travels. 37 miles.

February 5

The rain was gone. The skies were clear. The wind was chilly. Today we will do some shopping whereever Donna tells me to go.

We decided to stop for breakfast at Mel's Diner. I had a nice omelette. We ate here over ten years ago with Monty and Stephanie. Hard to believe it has been that long ago. Our last trip with Mike Padgett was in 2012. Our last trip with Monty was in 2016. Kind of sad how time slips away.

We drove by the outlet malls on Teaster Avenue. The Nike store has been replaced by a J&P Cycles store. I wonder if that would be worth visiting? None of the stores we saw struck Donna's interest. We made a loop up Veteran Parkway, then onto Collier Drive, and worked our way down to the Tanger Outlet Mall.

The mall wasn't very busy (yeah...wintertime) and we easily found a place to park. We spent a couple hours making a loop of the mall. We went to Aeropostle, Nike, and a bunch of other stores. Donna got some Bearpaws shoes and jeans. All the walking made me tired.

We drove up the street for a revisit to Walmart. The cabin doesn't have any extra toilet paper or trash bags.

Donna suggested going next door to Chick-Filet and getting a couple sweet teas. I didn't realize they had good sweet teas. They do. The drive-thru line was long so Donna went inside. Afterwards we went back to the cabin and lounged/rested for awhile.

Later that afternoon we decided it was time for supper. Donna suggested pizza. After a search we decided to go up the road to J Dels. We went inside and sat down. There was a waitress delivering pizzas to the tables but we weren't sure if they waited on you. Donna asked the table next to us. You have to order at the counter. We ordered a pizza and cheese sticks. In my mind I was thinking cheesy breadsticks but they were actually deep fried mozzarella cheese sticks. Good either way.

The pizza was delicious. The crust was crispy on bottom but it wasn't a thin crust. We had meat lovers minus the pepperoni. Thinking about that pizza makes me hungry. Their menu looked wonderful. We could have eaten there every night.

Afterwards we drove down Teaster to check things out. They must have had a concert or something at the LeCont Center. People were lined up outside. The mountains look especially pretty in the sunset.

Mr. & Mrs. Wright.

We made a loop down the main drag and headed back to the cabin. Ahhhhhh...vacation.

Our Day 4 travels. 20 miles.

February 6

Today we will go to Gatlinburg. Donna has wanted to do the Skywalk for a long time. The temperature is supposed to be in the upper 40's today.

Traffic was light all the way to Gatlinburg. Soon we were at our normal parking area near the space needle. The Skybridge is on the ridge behind the space needle.

I was saddened to see motorcycles are no longer allowed to park here. This is where we always park our bikes. I wonder what changed?

Bubba Gumps is just down from the parking area. It is a Gatlinburg favorite for us. I was getting hungry so we decided to start there. Look at that happy face. She got shrimp and I had fish & chips.

When we were at the Tanger Mall yesterday we stopped at a winery. They had a promotion going. If you visited them and two other places in Gatlinburg you get a free shirt. Today we will visit the two other places and Donna will get a free shirt. We walked down the south side of the main drag until we came to the Tennessee Cider Company. Donna did a tasting and got her book stamped. We went into the Mountain Mall for a bit...mostly to use the restroom. We worked our way back up the north side of street to Tennessee Homemade Wines. Here Donna got her third stamp, a bottle of wine, and a free shirt.

We weren't far from the Skylift so up the mountain we went. It was a little breezy near the bottom. After the fires several years ago they had to rebuild the Skylift. The remnants of the old concrete pads were still there as well as some burned trees. The Skybridge was interesting to walk across. The bouncing and sway add some excitement to the height. We took the gravel path on the way back.

2022 vs 2012 at the Skypark.


An overview of Gatlinburg.

Headed back down the mountain. Donna was a little skeptical of the cable attachment.

We dropped our packages off at the car and walked to the west end of town and back. Donna got some Minnetonka moccasins and she scored a nice travel cup at the Nantahala Outdoor Center. We stopped at Starbucks, too.

According to Donna's watch we walked three miles today, and it felt like it. Once back at the car we drove the Gatlinburg bypass and went back to the cabin...where a couple of old fogies took a nap.

Later that evening we decided steak sounded good for supper...in particular Texas Roadhouse. There were two in the area so we went to the one on the east side of Pigeon Forge.

Can you tell I'm dreaming of the double pork chop dinner I'm going to get? Eat half now and the other half tomorrow..which I did. Donna got sirloin tips. I rarely eat the rolls but tonight I had four! They were so good.

Pigeon Forge, TN. 19:49, mileage 102,419 - filled up the Sequoia. The mpg was 13.4...more what I'm used to for normal driving.

Our Day 5 travels. 31 miles.

February 7

We've done all the main things we had wanted to do, so today will be a piddle around day. Donna would like to find a swimsuit. She has lost weight and her swimsuits don't fit very well.

As we headed to the outlet malls on Teaster Donna suggested stopping at J&P Cycle and seeing what they had, so we did. The place is okay. The prices are good, but not a huge selection of anything. I did get a tire pressure gauge for the Sequoia and Donna got a new Frogtog top.

Our next stop was the tool store down the road. You never know what you might find. That awesome deal might be lurking. We walked through the whole store and only found $17 worth of stuff to buy. Everything seems so low quality. I'd rather shop at Harbor Freight.

There was a toy store near the tool store so Donna dropped in to look for action figures. She found none.

None of the outlet stores on Teaster Lane appealed to Donna, so we found ourselves cruising the strip. It was near lunch time so Donna suggested McAllisters. We like to eat there. Ham & cheese with a side of potato salad...yummy.

After lunch we started our swimsuit hunt. We stopped at a big souvenoir store that advertised swimwear. In what would be a familiar theme, they advertised swimwear, had swimwear displays, but had no actual swimwear for sale.

We stopped at the mall next to Lidl Dolly's. There were several clothing shops. No swimsuits were found, but Donna did get a purse at the purse store.

Since we were close to Lidl Dolly's we checked on quilts. Donna made me choose one so I found a purple'ish one I liked (cat not included). It was kind of expensive but you only get one honeymoon quilt.

We drove almost all the way to I-40 then turned around and stopped at TJ Max. Surely they'd have some swimwear. Nope. We did get a toy for Buford.

We worked our way back down the east end of the strip. This store advertised swimwear...but had none.

Donna thought the "big store with the Alligator" might have something. Nope. We walked to a gift shop nearby (Mountain Cove Trading Post?) and...cha ching...they had swimsuits! Donna didn't find any she liked but she did find some shorts she could match with stuff she already had.

We went back to the cabin for some well deserved lounging. We ate our leftovers that night and started packing for our departure tomorrow.

Our Day 6 travels. 36 miles.

February 8

We've had a great honeymoon vacation but now it is time to head home to Buford. Just like on the trip down, the trip back will involve a meandering route to visit some antique stores. The first antique store on our journey didn't open until 10am so there was no need to be up early. That's no problem for me, but when I woke up this morning Donna was already dressed. She's so precious.

As we headed up Veteran's Parkway it was obvious something substantial was on fire. You could see it for miles.

The first two antique stores were located on US411 about two-thirds of the way to Chestnut Hill. We arrived at the first one, Smokehouse Antiques, a few minutes before time to open. It looked like someone's junky garden shed at the end of a steep muddy driveway. We looked at each other and left. The second place was a couple miles down the road. Chip's Antiques looked like it used to be a nice place but had the appearance of not been open in a few years. Weeds grown up. Everything looked closed and dirty. We drove up the driveway, looked around, and left. Zero for two so far this morning.

Our next stop was a place I've passed many times and wished I had time to stop...the Bush's Baked Bean store. We found several things here...a refrigerator magnet for my mom, some pins, a towel with a dog like Buford on it, some chili beans. It was a nice place to visit. Didn't see Duke the talking dog anywhere.

Our route took us to Newport and north on US25E. As we have traveled around we notice the areas we see on the show 'Moonshiners'. We are in Mark and Digger's area now. As we passed over the tail of Douglas Lake we were shocked by how low the water was. It wasn't much more than the river that ran through it.

Just as we crossed the bridge over the lake I saw a sign for DJ's Antiques. The bottom of the sign said something about 5500 feet, so I thought it was another mile down the road and I kept driving. Donna told me I had passed the store. I was confused and turned around. When we pulled in I saw my error. It said the store was 5500 square feet.

This was a decent store. Real antiques. Normal prices. It's nice to be away from the touristy areas. Donna found a couple action figures for $7 each but the lady only charged us $10 for both. Nice.

Near the intersection with I-81 is Possum Creek Antiques and Collectibles. More collectibles than antiques in my opinion. Lots of glassware stuff, knick knacks, etc. We asked the lady here why the lake was so low. She said they drain it every winter. Now we know.

There were no more antique stores coming up soon so we enjoyed the scenery. The Cherokee Lake area is pretty. This area is rich in railroad history. There are large elevation changes as you head north.

Our next stop was Paradise Pickers in Tazewell. Coming into the town the GPS wanted to route us over gravel roads and I think someone's driveway. We stayed on the main roads. This was a fun store to look through, albeit cold inside. Brrrrrr. I found a John Wayne puzzle.

I thought this picture was cool because of the spooky figure in the window and the painted over "Boot fittin' done here" sign. Was this an old general store or shoe shop?

It was lunch time and Donna suggested mexican food. We did a search and went to El Mariachi. It was good...especially the chips and dip. Donna had a margarita...or two.

Trails End Antiques wasn't on our list. We just happened upon it. Their stuff seemed expensive for what it was, but it made for a nice stop.

One of the interesting parts of US25E is going through the Cumberland Tunnel. There is an overlook and some railroad tracks I'd like to visit someday.

Our last planned antique store was Antiques and Accents in Corbin, KY. We were here several years ago during a weekend visit to Corbin. I remembered it being an interesting store. Either they've changed their inventory or my memory has lapsed. It was mostly furniture. Donna found a wicker couch she was interested in but the lady wanted way too much for something that had been sitting outside in the weather.

We were working our way to I-75 and stopped at a light. I looked over and saw the Vendors Mall of Corbin. According to the sign it was open. I was getting ready to tell Donna when she perked up...she had noticed it too. Donna found some superhero clothes for the grandkids here.

There's not much left to tell after this. I-75 to Lexington. I like to find a vehicle and pace myself with it. Highway games. For a long time it was an orangish-red Tacoma.

Midway, KY. 17:04, mileage 102,695 - fuel and a stretch break. The Sequoia is getting 17 mpg. I'm happy with that. Donna has taken the Sequoia to Louisiana a couple times to pick up her grandson, but this is my first long trip in it. It makes a great travel vehicle.

I-64 to Louisville. A traffic jam due to a disabled vehicle took about 25 minutes to clear. We saw a semi make a last minute exit and almost take out a couple cars. By the time we crossed into Indiana it was dark. At Palmyra we turned north to Salem and took IN-60 to Mitchell. We stopped at Arbys in Bedford and took food home to eat. They have fish sandwiches again.

Buford's howl of happiness welcomed us home. We got puppy kisses and he enjoyed his new toys...that he expects to get. He is spoiled. We ate our food and unpacked. I took off for the rest of the week so I still have several days off. It was a great vacation.

Our Day 7 travels. 378 miles.

See you on the Highway!

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