Friday, May 27, 2016

Great Friends and Fun

We met Charles and Sandy three years ago when they came to Betty's RV Park for three days and stayed three weeks.  They fell in love with Betty and all the friends they made there and several couples have accepted there generous offer to come to Lewisburg for a visit.  This is our second visit and they are such fantastic and generous hosts, providing a spot to hook ups for the RV and acting as tour guides.
We drove from Memphis and arrived at 1:00 PM.  After setting up they took us to lunch.  They had tickets for a STYX concert that evening at the Ascend Amphitheater in Nashville and they insisted we join them along with Grover and Mackenzie for the show.  A slight change in plans and we were showered and on the road at four.
After dinner and before the concert we went to the roof at Acme, a crazy Nashville bar.  Mackenzie, Nanc and Sandy priming for the show.........
while Charles, Jim and Grover swapped lies.  Hanging out with young people, we used Uber for the first time and both Charles and I were surprised that you don't need money for the ride. Thanks Grover.   We met Grover and Mackenzie when we were here three years ago before they were married and then again this spring at Betty's.
The venue is a very nice amphitheater on the river right in downtown Nashville.  Performing with STYX was the Nashville Symphony.  In addition to their greatest hits they also did songs by David Bowie, the Beatles and others.  It was a great concert at a great venue.  Nashville sure is a happening place.
The next day we went to Arrington Vineyards for an afternoon of music, snacks and wine.  This is a neat place that has concerts most weekends and picnicking is encouraged.
Grover, Mackenzie, Sandy, Charles, Nanc and Jim at Arrington Vineyards.
Day three started at Honey's, home of the famous slawburger, a hamburger with slaw on it.  I don't know if there is another place in the country where you can get any burger for $1.79.
Next stop was Prichard's Distillery, a small, family operation that makes several kinds of liquor in an old school.  Can't think of a better use for an old school.
The whole process is done in the old classrooms.  Top: First they cook and distill the grain, then they use the small still (center) to infuse fruit flavors into the liquor, then the barrels are stored outside.  Bottom:  The bottles are labeled by hand one at a time and then sent through the bottling operation.  They were happy that they just started using a new bottling machine that fills four at a time.  The finished product is then sent to the gym for shipping. 
These are all their products.  They have several different rums, moonshine, bourbon, Tennessee whiskey and liqueurs. We tried several, but unfortunately they were out of our favorite, bourbon.  We did buy a bottle of moonshine for a gift.
There were days during my teaching career when I wished I had a cabinet like this outside my room.  If you want to see a very neat, small distillery put Prichard's on your to do list.
Next we toured George Dickel Tennessee Whisky Distillery.  Dickel is a much bigger operation than Prichard's, but much smaller than the other distillery in the area, Jack Daniels.  They only have 36 employees and the whole process is done the old way, by hand, no computers.  They only make white corn and sour mash whisky here, then send it to Indiana in tanker trucks to be bottled.  No pictures were allowed inside.     
Like all distillery tours it ended with a tasting.  We are happy that Sandy was our designated driver.  Even though it is a smaller operation, like so many distilleries today Dickel is owned by a large corporation with headquarters in London.  That said, the whisky is very good.  
The day was not over yet.  Charles took me to meet his friend Spud, a very interesting character we had heard a lot about.  Seems one of Spud's bulls was stolen and the case was going to court.  It was a hoot listening to this tale of modern cattle rustling.  Later Charles grilled salmon and boiled crab for a wonderful dinner.  We even had a fire and watched the moon rise over the Tennessee hills while we shared tales of our travels.
Good-bye and THANK YOU Sandy and Charles for your wonderful hospitality and generosity.  We had a wonderful time.  As always, making and seeing friends on the road is one of the best things about our RV lifestyle. 


Bobbie and Jim said...

They are a great hospitable. Dickel is my all time favorite whiskey.

Jan Mains said...

Sounds like a wonderful time with great friends. I've added that school to my bucket list.