Monday, November 19, 2018

Fall 2018 Trip: Day 38 - Korean Food, Kittens, and Koffee!

There's a Hyundai auto manufacturing plant right outside of Montgomery, Alabama. That has to play some part in why Montgomery has five purely Korean restaurants. Time to start going through some of the restaurants and seeing which ones are the best.

Here at So Gong Dong Tofu and BBQ they serve authentic Korean food, although there wasn't too many of the sides we were hoping for. While a good restaurant, we may try out one of the other Korean restaurants in Montgomery.

After So Gong Dong, we drove over to the Books-A-Million shopping center. But something caught our eye before we were able to go in.



Had to leave, otherwise we were going to leave with another cat. Time to head next door to Books-A-Million. The layout was pretty close to the one in Tennessee.

After cookie and caramel frapp, had to do a bit of washing today. Luckily we had some quarters and the laundry room was pretty nice. It was $2 wash/$2 dry. Always nice having some fresh bedsheets!

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Fall 2018 Trip: Day 37 - Driving Day: Cornersville, TN to Hope Hull, AL

So we bid adieu to our two-week stop in Cornersville, Tennessee and take a 238 mile drive down the I-65. It wasn't long after we got on the road that we saw the sign welcoming us to Alabama.
After quite a few more miles, we stopped into a Petro to get some gas. Luckily we found an open spot on the far side of all the pumps.
The $2.44 amount was a bit surprising, as we had seen a few $2.19 billboards as we first crossed the Alabama border. On a 35 gallon tank of gas, a few cents can add up to a bit of money. Oh well. We even saw this red "Kamikaze" trailer that we passed earlier that later on passed us.
As we got closer to our stop in Alabama, we saw a strange tow trailer kind of thing ahead of us. I almost thought it was one of those speed indicator things that tell you how fast you were going in school zones. We couldn't tell just what it was, only that the word "Cricket" was on the back with a large decal of the United States on the side. 

Our RV got closer to this thing, and for a long while it was a rather uneventful drive. The SUV towing it was going around 65 in a 70 speed limit, so we were just caravaning with it still trying to figure out just what the thing was was. The trailer then began to swerve from side to side, gently at first, then whipping back and forth violently. I was sure it was going to flip over somehow. The red GMC truck in the next lane must've felt similarly, putting on hazard lights and backing way off from the vehicle. The trailer continued whipping crazily behind the SUV, at one point entering the next lane. I thought for sure they would pull over, or at least slow down. Then, just as soon as it had begun, the trailer began to stabilize again. We still have no idea why it behaved like that in the first place. We picked up the speed and passed the Cricket trailer on the left hand side before it could have another episode.
After making a couple really sharp left hand turns off Exit 158, taking a beat up back country road, we were at our destination. The air was nice and warm, quite a difference from our last location with winter coats and white plumes of breath. Long sleeves were exchanged for T-shirts. The air conditioner was turned on. We even had to break out the flyswatter as bugs were finding their way in the RV. A trip of 240 miles had turned winter back into summer.

After getting situated by leveling the front passenger tire, getting all the connections and covers put on, it was time to celebrate...somewhere. Hope Hull doesn't have much to offer by way of food offerings. We hopped back on the I-65, drove past the large Hyundai plant off in the distance, and found ourselves at Applebee's.

One more errand to run before heading back to the RV, a stop to Walmart for some items for the week. We were a bit taken aback when most of the water jugs were missing, leaving us to buy Gerber Purified Baby Water for $1.28, which I'm sure is exactly the same as their normal water. We tried finding some kind of fan for the RV, but no luck no matter where we looked. But the worst was when we got to the self checkout and realized there was no hand scanner, leaving us to run everything over their scanner which would then display some kind of bagging message. Even a store employee got involved at one point, scanning her code and walking off. We're usually not put off on visiting Walmart, but I think this in Montgomery is a one and done affair.

Walking outside of the disappointing Walmart, we saw the sun setting and the temperature rapidly changing. My short sleeves felt inadequate against the coming cold. We couldn't believe that the day was ending at 5:00. By the time we made it back to the RV park the day was all but gone as we brought everything inside.

Per the Weather Channel, Winter Storm Avery is missing Alabama, just clipping Mississippi and covering parts of Louisiana with snow.

It's been about 5 weeks since we left Rustic Acres RV Park in Shippenville. Pennsylvania, Along with New York, Pennsylvania seemed to be getting some of the colder temperatures due to the winter storm. Next week looks particularly chilly with one night even going down to 13 degrees. Looks like we left at the right time!

Saturday, November 17, 2018

Fall 2018 Trip: Day 36 - Ending Our Two-Week Stay In Cornersville, Tennessee

Ice Storm Avery has been traveling down the north eastern part of the country over the past few days, and feeling the temperature outside, it's getting a bit too cold for comfort. Sitting in the parking lot of the Seoul Garden, small flecks of snow was pelting the windshield.

It was a good day to have warm Korean food. Back at the Texas Tea Campground in Cornersville, Tennessee, Buddy was beating the cold weather his own way, sitting between some pillows.

30 miles from Books-A-Million and 40 miles from Barnes & Noble, it's saying something that we were willing to drive the 10 extra miles to go to B&N. Missed the drink and pastry selection while reading. Reminded me of the apartment days where we'd go to B&N on a regular basis.

All in all, a nice couple of weeks in Cornersville. They even had a few of their trademark cats available as we arrived. We managed to see a few family members while here, but cold weather and scheduling issues were also something we found ourselves running into. When it got too cold, the RV park would unhook your water hose if you didn't do it yourself beforehand. While we've had to do that in the past, this was the first time we've ever had to put antifreeze in the tanks. Definitely need to make it to our final destination and avoid the freezing weather.

Monday, November 12, 2018

Fall 2018 Trip: Day 30 - Wow, It Gets Cold Here!

Was it this cold in California? Maybe a couple days a year. But we get it for weeks, nay, months on this side of the country. Spoiled, spoiled me! The plan was to take a bit of a break for a couple of weeks from our rigorous tour schedule. That plan has come to include trips to Barnes & Noble and to a lesser extent Books-A-Million due to their diminished pastry selection. Have to admit, I enjoy the routine of reading at the cafe. Instead of finding the entrance to a new attraction or point of interest, a quick outing can consist of finding a table at a B&N or Starbucks and reading for a few hours.

The weather here in the Cornersville area has been dipping into freezing territory these past few nights, making us corral the 50-ft hose into the shower, which is never a fun task as it covers the shower with outside dirt and mung. Another consideration are the black and gray tanks which could possibly freeze if we're not careful. A trip to Walmart provided us with the 2.5 gallons of the powerful pink substance that will be going down the drain in the not too distant future.

Walking out from Walmart with our 2.5 gallons of pink antifreeze. It's a special kind of antifreeze. Don't you be putting that Prestone or other automobile antifreze in your RV tanks, oh no. 
Not sure how to end this post... A photo from the inside of a Pilot bathroom stall while visiting family members. Good night!

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Fall 2018 Trip: Day 24 - Surviving the Storm

A knock on the door Tuesday night at the RV park. Due to still being in the RV, I was standing above the RV owner who had just signed us in that Sunday. He was going door to door warning people about the tornado warning and to take shelter, if needed, in the tractor barn on the other side of the park. Tractor barn didn't sound to inviting, but I thanked him for letting us know.

Though there was some wind and rain, really nothing compared to what we thought might be coming our way. We took a walk around the park and it seemed as though nothing was really affected. Now the weather concern is a series of cold evenings dipping into the 20s starting this Friday. Hope we can survive the weather we seemed to have dropped into!

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Fall 2018 Trip: Day 22 - Driving Day: Cave City, KY to Cornersville, TN

The day started in the morning, as most tend to do. The last dark vestiges of night fled behind the metal roof of the old barn in the field. Flee, night, flee!

But soon the day was bright and it was time to get everything packed away to hit the road. I wondered why it was so early. I had forgotten that Daylight Saving ended and we were an hour back, so we were ahead of schedule.

A look back at our spot during the last few days. No one else stayed at the park that we could see. It was just us all alone the entire time, a really nice experience.

Taking a last look at the campground, we hit the road driving down to the freeway and heading down the I-65. We needed some gas and found a Flying J on an offramp. As we pulled in, we found these pumps to the side that luckily dispensed unleaded gas, so we didn't have to try squeezing in at the pumps.

Getting out of a gas station can be a bit tricky. You study the layout and all the cars, then you just have to go for it and play it by ear. There have been a few times we've had to unhook the car because I misjudged a turn and ended up stuck somewhere.

Getting out of the parking lot, we were able to get to the Texas Tea Campground. It was a strange feeling returning to a campground we've stayed at earlier. When we parked the RV, we could see the first place we had stayed off in the distance.

As a celebration for making it to our destination, we went over to Fujiyama.

Nothing a little orange chicken and tempura can't solve!

We were able to pay a visit to family and get attacked by some of their cats. Here we're greeted by Callie Mae wondering who these strangers are in her house. All in all, a great driving day!

Friday, November 2, 2018

Fall 2018 Trip: Day 20 - Diamond Caverns, Park City, Kentucky

This morning wasn't too cold, but there was quite a bit of condensation in the RV on the windows and hatches.

Washed our hair and took out the trash. Saw a few vehicles that I'm guessing have been here for a while.

We chose a time to head out to the Historic Diamonds Caverns which wasn't far away from the campsite.

We actually saw a cat in someone's SUV!

Inside the lobby, you can have a look around the other signs for caverns around the country.

Plus there's the gift shop which will sell you bags of dirt!

Soon it was time for our guide, Sarah, to lead us down into the caverns.

Here Sarah is explaining where the original entrance to the caverns were.

You may want to wear a hood or a hat as the cave will occasionally drip water on top of you. Here drops of water fall on a stone.

At one point we were shown pieces that had been broken off of parts of the cave. Diamond Caverns was involved in the Cave Wars in the early 1900s where proprietors of other caves would sneak in and destroy parts of caverns and burn down buildings to sabotage other caves in the area to increase their own number of visitors. In 1961, a federal law was enacted to criminalize defacing of these caverns, but for now the history can still plainly be seen.

Sarah led us to a small stone alter in the middle of the cavern. Turns out they used to hold weddings in this space.

Also the cavern tour used to end here, but a wall was taken down that made the path twice as long as previously.
The path involved uphill hikes like this, but there wasn't as many tight squeezes as I remember Mammoth Cave having.

Water pours down a rock wall.

Soon we reached the end, which was a proposed second entrance and exit that was never finished. So we have to turn around and walk the way we came in order to leave Diamond Caverns.

A look at the stairs to enter and exit Diamond Caverns

Sarah comes back through the entrance as the tour through Diamond Caverns is concluded. We put our names in the guestbook and then make our way back to the parking lot.

The quest to find food continues. Samurai was rumored to have Korean food, but they mainly had Japanese food.

Hibachi chicken lunch special.

In the same strip mall was the M&K Asian Grocery. We had a walk around, but they were woefully absent of a lot of the snacks we normally would look for. We left without scoring any Asian snacks.

Well, since we're in Bowling Green, why not a return trip to the Barnes & Noble we had been at yesterday? Trying the caramel brulee frappiccihno.
A flier left on the windshield. Wish I could've been psychic about the after effects of having a pizzarito just the day before. Did you know not all Barnes & Noble have toilet seat covers? Just something to keep in mind.