Thursday, June 16, 2011

Country Road Take Me Home To The Place I Belong

What has been the go to item on a road trip for our family?...our ipad.  We added the Trip Advisor app and its interactive map is far better than our car GPS.  It shows our location in real time and the surrounding area.  The result is that this has been a no-highway road trip!  
The back roads of Tennessee are beautiful.  Beautiful in a different way than the refined farmland of the Amish country, different than the rolling blue mountains in Virginia and certainly different from our neck of the woods in Connecticut.  Here the farmland is rough.  The Smoky Mountains line the horizon and farms can stretch across open fields, through patches of trees and pop up in unexpected places.  
We wandered today.  We wandered to The Lost Sea, the country’s largest underwater lake.  We hiked down about half a mile through caverns where Native Americans held secret meetings around a fire and where locals snuck distilleries during the age of Prohibition.  We saw graffiti created by Confederate soldiers during the Civil War.  Finally at the end of our hike we heard the tinkling sound of dripping water.  The cool, crystal clear lake was pristine.  Due to recent snow melt and severe storms, the lake has risen over 20 feet in the last three months.  Trout swam alongside our boat much the way I imagine dolphins swim alongside boats in the southern states.

Then we wandered to Mayfield Dairy.  We had to try the ice cream.  We wandered into the company store where we discovered there was a tour beginning!  A free tour!  It was quick, but we were able to see and learn about the bottling process and how milk gets from cow to consumer.

Lastly we wandered along a country road on our return trip.  Relying on our ipad, we roamed through farmland imagining which home we would like to own.  Our ipad only led us astray once, when we followed what was clearly labeled as a road, but was in fact a dirt pathway.  We were not sure our Prius was up for the task and wishing we were in a 4wheel drive Jeep, we turned around to find the next country road to take us home.

Are you humming John Denver’s lyrics?  Yeah, me too.


  1. What fun!! We have a Mayfield Dairy north of ATL and I haven't been since the kids were little....

    I love your sense of adventure! It's amazing the uses you are finding for the iPad, too! ;-)

  2. Amazing pictures! As always thank you for sharing!

  3. What a beautiful post!! What a talent for writing that makes me feel the wonder of your experiences. I want to go where you have been!

  4. Love the underground lake, just so darn awesome, And social trout too? Come ON!

  5. Beautiful photos! Sounds like you are having quite the adventure. Now I am going to have that John Denver song in my head!

  6. Great post! And yes, now that John Denver song is totally stuck in my head! :)

  7. I love sharing my trip with you all! I get so many ideas from places described on many of your blogs. MamaK - we are going to want pictures of the cave you are exploring today!

    Sorry y'all for putting the song in your head. I has a way of living there!

  8. Beautiful :). Your post reminds me of one of my favorite quotes
    "Wandering re-established the original harmony that once existed between man and the universe." ~ Anatole France

    Have a wonderful wandering weekend Jessica!!

  9. I love your new header photo!

    We are looking at a homeschool family camping trip in Vermont - hoping Jason can get off that week! - and I was just thinking how beautiful Vermont is and if I had my way, we would move there. But we need to be here for jason's work and family. I wish we could live in a place that was greener and less hectic.

  10. Isn't Mayfield Dairy the best??? I love all of your pictures. What a great trip. I agree that Tennessee is beautiful. And there is so much to do in the entire state. We are planning a trip soon to The Parthenon in Nashville. We are SO excited. I too have the John Denver song stuck in my head now. :)

  11. Oh my! You have me in a fit over here. I have been sitting on my hands because I want to pack up and go! Beautiful pictures! You will never forget this time.


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