As promised, part two of our camping/anniversary road trip from Oklahoma back to Wisconsin the “not so direct” way. I left you at Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky where we enjoyed two days and nights camping, hiking, and exploring the park. The fall colors were fabulous, and the weather sunny and warm enough to still be comfortable outside all day. On Wed. 10/21 we woke up, had breakfast and packed up the campsite, then we both ventured out on another run around the park, this time exploring the road into the park. Got back showered and jumped in the car to travel to our final destination, before WI, Lexington, KY.
I don’t know much about Lexington, but had heard it was a fun town, and was close enough to be included on our route. Research beforehand provided an inexpensive hotel that we would stay at for the next two nights as we explored the city. After arriving and checking in, we had dinner at the hotel, soup heated up in the microwave in the breakfast area…yep, that’s how we roll. Actually it was really delicious, and very affordable. We then headed out the door for some exploring.
First stop, a favorite of the University of Kentucky student body, the Common Grounds coffee shop. It was a quaint little coffee shop, in a corner building on E High Street, downtown Lexington. The owners had designed each room to be a different theme. For example, the back room for studying (tables, desks, desk chairs, etc.), the next room for hanging out (leather couches, love seats), and the front room a place for maybe meeting someone for lunch or a quick chat, (your usual cafe tables, and chairs). The coffee house was nice, and the coffee was decent, but we didn’t really find it to be anything special.
Next on the list Joseph Beth Booksellers. When we arrived it reminded us of a “nicer” Barnes & Noble. It was a really cool place, tons of books & magazines, and they even had their own cafe inside the store. After browsing for a few hours, we decided to call it a night.
The alarm went off bright and early the next morning and we ran the hotel stairs down to the workout room. To our dissapointment all the equipment was old, and neither the treadmill or elliptical machine worked. So, we headed to breakfast, filled our bellies with oatmeal, and made plans to do a run at Veterans Park followed by a few rounds of frisbee golf. We ran 4.3 miles around some of the trails, and then did about 7 holes on the frisbee golf course. Liesl is amazing, terrible at frisbee golf, but it was still fun navigating the course, through the wooded areas. It feels so good to start your day off with some good exercise.
Around 11:30 we headed back to the hotel for lunch, p.b. & banana sandwiches in the room, and to clean up and get ready to head downtown Lexington.
Our first visit on our way was the the Old Kentucky Chocolates factory/shop. We took the short tour, which provided us with lots of free samples, yum!! We then purchased some goodies for our families to enjoy, and headed across the street to a natural foods store called Good Market. I (Liesl) have a closet obsession, bit of a hobby of reading and studying nutrition and whole foods, cooking with and exploring whole foods stores. So this was really fun for me, not sure if Pete was as intrigued, but he’s a good husband and went along. After skimming the shelves we drove downtown to visit the historic Lexington Cemetery.
The entire cemetery was absolutely amazing! Pete & I both like cemeteries for some reason, so we spent a few hours walking around taking pictures of the gorgeous trees and some of the neat old grave stones. I don’t even think we saw a quarter of the cemetery, and when we decided to head back to our car we had a bit of a rough time finding it. 🙂 It was really a beautiful place and a must see if you are ever in Lexington.
We were starving after our long day, and had been looking forward to going out for our anniversary…our only “out to eat” meal of the trip. So we headed to the Mellow Mushroom!! It is a pizza place established by a couple of guys in the 1970s that were appealing to the college appetite of pizza & beer. I had heard good things about the place so we decided to give it a try. We ordered a salad to share for starters, it was mixed greens smothered in green olives and mushrooms! Then came the pizza!! I let Pete pick and he ordered the Mega Veggie (which would also have been my choice) …good guy… it was covered with delicious fresh veggies, feta, and mozzerella cheese. Delicious!! We would definitely go back, and had so much fun experiencing a new restaurant.
About this time we headed back to the hotel to get some decent sleep, we plan to leave early in the morning to make our 9.5 hour drive back home to Wisconsin. It’s been a great trip, and I’m glad we decided to take the time to travel a bit. However, we are both looking forward to being back home and preparing over the next two months for our departure to Mexico. Thanks for praying and enjoying the journey of life with us!