To Kentucky!

Last week, Alex and I decided to take a longer road trip to Kentucky, the next big target on my “Visit Every State Once” list.  Just short of seven days, we got to see lots of cool stuff, ending our trip in Cape Cod, MA for a special visit with my best friend for his 30th birthday.  Here’s what went down:

Day One

I worked for most of the day, but as soon as I got out, I picked up two salads, Alex and I scarfed them down in the car, and then headed towards Gettysburg, PA–our first stop.  On the way we got to see this incredible sunset that started pretty typical

2016-08-21 19.55.42and then quickly developed into something mind blowing.

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We booked a campsite in Gettysburg for the night, pitched the tent, and decided to leave the rain fly off (something that didn’t really work out the last time I was in Gettysburg).  It was a beautiful, cool night with lots of stars–perfect for a first night away.

Day Two

We woke up to a beautiful sky thanks to no-rain-fly

IMG_20160822_081924This was a big driving day–we headed from Gettysburg to Kentucky, but first we stopped in an AMAZING tiny diner.  The food was delicious, the atmosphere was amazing, and from the table, we could see the older couple that owned the place cooking all the food in the kitchen.

IMG_20160822_095511I’d go all the way to Gettysburg just to grab another meal here.

On the way to the car, we were stopped by an older vet who had grown up in Brooklyn, right were I used to live.  We had a nice chat about the good ol’ days at the Coney Island boardwalk.

We drove through beautiful stretches of highway, and when we got to Kentucky, it was so green and smelled like grass.  We stopped at a really beautiful rest stop for car-made sandwiches on bread we made at home before the trip.  They were really delicious and the view was incredible.

IMG_20160822_155617IMG_20160822_161958We called a campsite early in the afternoon–we wanted to camp in the Daniel Boone National Forest, and wanted to make sure we got a spot.  The man on the phone insisted that we were the only ones in the whole campground–and the whole area for that matter, and didn’t have to worry about claiming a spot.

We had to drive through a winding, totally deserted road for about 35 minutes before we got to the campsite.  I swear, it was totally out of a horror movie.  We parked, and there was a tiny cabin with the lights on, and then nothing.  The sun was going down and everything beyond the cabin was just darkness.  There was a sign on the door that said the office was closed, even though the guy on the phone said he would stick around until we got there.  The only living creature around us was a cute little dog sitting on a wicker chair on the cabin’s porch.

I decided to call the office again, only for me to realize I had no service.  I walked back towards the car and managed to get one bar, and called the number.  A phone on a table on the porch rang, breaking the utter silence and stillness of where we were.  No answer.

We hopped back in the car and sped away from Murder Camp, and grabbed a night at a Red Roof instead.  The guy ended up calling me back, but I told him we arrived, saw no one and left.  I was a little disappointed that we didn’t get to camp that night, but maybe the road trip Gods were trying to tell us something.

Day Three

We woke up in our comfy hotel, and hopped in the car after a quick energy bar breakfast, and headed to Lexington.  I’ve been to many popular places in many different states, and I was surprised to find a very short list of interesting things to see and do around Lexington.  Though short, the list is still cool.

We started at the Mary Todd Lincoln house, which looks unimpressive from the outside, but is really awesome on the inside.  A lot of the house was auctioned off and sold when her father died, but they were able to find similar pieces to what was described to be in each room at the time.  Everything in the home is from that time, so though she didn’t own all of it, it’s still accurate and great to see.

Lincoln’s grandson ended up donating a ton of items to the house when he died, so there are several things in the collection that belonged to the Lincoln family.

The coolest thing to see was Mary’s bed, which was definitely swanky

 

The house did a really good job painting her as a human, and giving a context to the many rumors and bad feelings associated with her memory.  I appreciated that about the tour, since I’ve never really been a big fan of the Civil War or any of the history around that time.

After, we went to the Town Branch distillery,

 

which was my first time seeing the inside scoop on how any form of alcohol is made.  They showed us the process,

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and we got to take a tour of the facility–very good.  The best part was the tasting, and getting our passports signed by the first stop of the Bourbon Trail!

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