I today was the day we hit “the wall” for road trippers: the point of no more. Today marks the point where we are tired and sight seeing weary. No this does not mean we are done it just means that today was a day off from sightseeing. We didn’t really do anything today and abandoned the initial plan for the day for a shortened and less packed with things to do. In other words, today was a breather day and hopefully tomorrow will be the always necessary bounce back day in the road trip.
Also today marks a different sort of landmark. Today, day seven marks the longest time I have ever been on the road. Six days was my previous record and now we are on day seven, soon to be eight that will keep going up as we continue. So, this is a long trip.
It was hard leaving New Orleans, just as it was hard to leave New Mexico and San Antonio before that. We have had some great stops and I am looking forward to more, but I seriously enjoyed New Orleans. We started our morning with Cafe Du Monde again since it is open 24 hours we went pretty early and got to see the sunrise from our hotel room in the morning.
After leaving our trial of powder sugar behind us and watching everyone else who left Cafe Du Monde brush the remnants of their beignet from their clothing somewhat unsuccessfully, we headed out for a day of driving. We went across three states, Mississippi, Alabama, and Tennessee.
We only had two stops along our way to Nashville. The first was lunch at the original Whistle Stop Cafe or the Irondale Cafe where the book by Fannie Flag, Fried Green Tomatoes, was based out of. I love that book and the movie and knew once I was in the area that we had to stop for some fried green tomatoes. So we went on the outskirts of Birmingham, Alabama and found the little trainside cafe with red checkered tableclothes and movie posters all over the walls with a cafeteria style food line up of good old southern soul food. I learned a little something about southern food today called the meat and three; this is a way of describing the amount of food you get (gigantic amounts) being one meat entree along with three sides of choice from a long selection of food options. So I got their famous fried chicken, the fried green tomatoes of course and mashed potatoes.. and it came with a bun, and sweet tea. It was so much food it seemed really ridiculous, but what was more is that anyone can order as many as they want and it really piles up quickly. The fried chicken was very good, moist, and crispy. The bun and sweet tea were also phenomenal, both where unbelievably good and I wish I could have had more if I wasn’t already so stuffed from the other plates. However, I was pretty disappointed by the fried green tomatatoes. They were greasy, cold, and too acidic even for green tomatoes. It was saddening but for me definitly an atmosphere thing and being able to say I had been to the Whistle Stop Cafe. I definitly don’t regret going because everything else was very good and if not for fear of becoming obese in a matter of days would surely go back for more.
The second stop we made was to the Ave Maria Grotto which is a benedictine monks old pass time making minatures of major monuments world wide. This odd stop in Cullman, Alabama was a large garden where the hills where covered in this sculptures.
Little Jerusalem including Bethlehem
Hanging gardens of Babylon
Even the Campanile.
It was all very interesting but by the time we reached Nashville neither of us really wanted to do anything and just did a brief tour of the city known for its music.
Uneventful day but it is getting us there slowly. Tomorrow is another sort of off day, we are taking another family day and meeting some of my lovely relatives from North Carolina in Gatlinberg for a day. More than halfway there.