Our last day in Gatlinburg, we went to a few shops that I had wanted to check out. I had gone to them the first time we visited Gatlinburg and I wanted to see if they had anything new. One was a stained glass shop called “A Touch of Tiffany” and the other was a wood shop called “The Wood Whittler’s.”
Then we stopped at a small cafe called the Wind Walker Cafe for coffee and a rest. The coffee was suberb, as was the chocolate cookie I ate with it. Mom and Dad had coffee, too, and shared a cookie. I would have liked to stay longer and chat longer with the owner, a Cherokee woman who was very pleasant. But alas, I was not on my own schedule.
We went back to the hotel to “rest” for a while, then went out for dinner. We decided on Pizza Hut in Pigeon Forge. I have never been to a Pizza Hut like this before. They did not seat you and they did not have servers. You ordered at the long counter, then waited for your food which you carried yourself to the table. There were many that had not been cleared, even though there was no one in the place when we got there. The tables were mostly wobbly and the most of the chairs were missing caps on the legs, so it was nearly impossible to slide them across the rug (which looked older than my in-laws). The food was good, fortunately. Otherwise I’d be complaining more than I am. However, I don’t really recommend this place.
We spent the rest of the evening packing up and relaxing before we started our trip back north.
Wednesday morning we left Gatlinburg under beautiful, sunny skies. We traveled primarily along I 81 through Tennessee into Virginia, with relatively light traffic and lovely vistas. We stopped for an overnight stay at the same Hampton Inn in Staunton, VA that we had stayed at on our trip down to Nashville.
This is one of the nicer Hampton Inns we’ve stayed at on this trip. They’re in the midst of renovations but that didn’t interfere with a pleasant stay. My husband went to get me an iced coffee from the Dunkin’ Donuts just down the street and returned instead with a dish of ice cream. They were making sundaes in the lobby.
This morning we left under sunny skies again. These are the two nicest traveling days we’ve had on the whole trip – too bad Mother Nature saved them for the drive home. Then again, it may be a good thing. We might be getting a bit cranky by now if it weren’t so nice out. The sky looked so dramatic today – filled with billowing cumulous clouds against a brilliant blue sky.
We had dinner at Friendly’s in Lancaster, PA. Then we checked in to the Bird-in-Hand Motel, which Mom and Dad had requested, since they stayed there once before. It’s pleasant enough though the walls are thin and, with Mom and Dad in the next room, it kind of feels like we’re sharing a room with them. That will certainly dampen the romantic atmosphere!
We’ll be here until we leave for home Sunday morning. My husband thinks we won’t hit too much traffic traveling on Sunday of the 3 day holiday weekend. I’m not totally convinced he’s right. I guess we’ll see.
Until then, we’ll be “doing Amish country” Mom and Dad’s way. It ought to be exciting!