Friday, June 17: We arrived at the Wilson County Fairgrounds/Expo Center in Lebanon, TN around 11 this morning. This will be our home for the next nine nights while attending the Escapee RV Club’s 61st Annual Escapade. We registered for this event back in January and can’t believe we’re finally here. We couldn’t believe our great luck when we landed a campsite with 50-amp power!!! According to Kevin, the volunteer who parked us, there were only 8 other sites with 50-amp service in the fairgrounds. I guess arriving a few days early has its advantages; not only are we are parked next to a lovely shade tree but we don’t have any neighbors on our right side. We picked up our Welcome Package which includes our name badges, fairground map, Program Guide and Escapade t-shirts. The event doesn’t start until Sunday, so we’ll do some exploring tomorrow.
Thursday, June 16: Sadie and I took a coffee stroll around the campground a little after 6:00 this morning, while it was still relatively cool (83). By 6:30, I had my clippers and other grooming tools set up on the picnic table and started clipping off Sadie’s curls. As always, Sadie was a good sport, and as always, I got carried away. I goofed up her beard (I had to cut out some clumps/mats). Fester says she looks like a dandelion? I think she looks like a toughie – like an apricot Tramp from Disney’s “Lady and the Tramp.”
Sadie alerted when a gentleman and his two darling dogs approached our site and started a conversation with Fester. We learned that he, his wife and the pups – Archie (apricot) and Shelby (white) both supposedly Miniature Doodles (more like toy) are from Indio, California, which is about 23 miles east of Palm Springs. We passed thru Indio last year, returning to our coach from an off-road trip in Joshua Tree National Forest.
We spent a couple of hours in the pool before taking off for our approximate 2.5-hour River Styx Tour of Mammoth Cave. Considering it reached 100 degrees today, we were excited to be touring a cave that stays a constant 54 degrees. But, we were glad we brought fleece jackets because it was chilly. The 2.5-mile River Styx Tour focuses on the unique geologic and natural history of Mammoth and includes a brief side trip to the underground water level. Our tour guide Chris was interesting and informative, and spread some “cave” humor while providing an in-depth look at the millions of years of formation of Mammoth Cave. Did I mention there were 600 steps to climb or descend?
After the cave tour, we returned home to get Sadie and went to check out the Wigwam Village (motel) we had passed several times. Fester has food memories of pestering his parents to stay in a teepee during a childhood family vacation. While taking some pictures, we were fortunate to meet the new owner, who gave us a quick history of the village and explained the extensive renovations being done to bring the village back to its 1930’s splendor and authenticity. Built in 1937, Historic Wigwam Village No. 2 is one of only three surviving Wigwam Villages of the seven built around the country before 1950 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Wednesday, June 15: Today we’re celebrating our 31st Wedding Anniversary! We left FMCA Campground in Cincinnati and are headed to Cave Country RV Park in Cave City, Kentucky for a two-night stay. Fortunately, the campground has 50-amp service and a POOL since it will be hot, hot, hot!
As I mentioned earlier, Fester went shopping for fans to help cool us off. Unfortunately, the majority of campsites at Escapades are only 30-amp service (vs. 50-amp) which means we will be limited to just one air conditioner. And, with temps in the high 90’s and low 100’s, that air conditioner may not keep up. Which is why I’ve made reservations for Sadie to attend Doggy Day Care while we’re at Escapades. We worry that the coach will get too hot, or we experience a brown-out from all the rigs sucking up the electricity. This will certainly be a new experience for us.
After getting settled in, we donned our swimsuits and almost ran to the pool. The hot sun has been heating up the water for days, so instead of being cold when we waded into the pool, it was refreshing and we were able to relax and float around for hours. It was too hot to cook out, so instead we went to a local restaurant in Horse Cave. You know you’re in a small town restaurant when the video screen loops highlights of community and church functions, as well as obituaries… for real.