Friday, March 23, 2007

Rest stop: Manchester TN

Is this the blog equivalent of making someone watch your vacation slides? I hope not!We needed to stretch our legs halfway home, so we detoured at a favorite exit on I-24: Manchester, TN. The Russell Stover outlet has free samples, deeply-discounted sugar-free candy, and sparklingly clean bathrooms. They also installed outdoor tables with umbrellas.
The store just marked Christmas candy 75% off. As we enjoyed a 12-cent Santa outside, we decided it was too pretty to keep driving. We'd make an impromptu stop at the Duck River below the Normandy Lake Dam. But we couldn't quite remember how to get there...
We thought we'd find a map downtown. While my husband walked to the Chamber of Commerce, I made a beeline for this junky establishment. He came back emptyhanded--but I had a ten cent county map when he returned!
I had to run in Faye's Discount Grocery on the square--purely for research purposes, of course! This salvage store had higher prices than I expected for the food quality. However, six years in business must mean occasional bargains.
We made it to Normandy Dam less than 20 minutes later. The kids and I sunned on a picnic blanket while my husband fished. Andrew reeled in a tiny little trout.
Normandy itself is like a ghost town. I hope there are still quaint spots near fishing rivers when it's time for us to retire.
And there you have it! I hope you've enjoyed your virtual vacation with my family. Thanks to everyone who sent tips and ideas for our southeast Tennessee adventure. Now, on to the laundry...

9 comments:

bonnie: said...

I've been enjoying this, Meredith. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

Meredith-
Your trip blog was fun, and made me excited about our own upcoming adventures this year!
Here's a question: Did your husband enjoy his special flyfishing lesson that you paid for with the profits from your Ebay sale? Just curious!
Susan

Meredith said...

YES! He LOVED it!

He has never had a guided expedition before--he learned so much technique being one-on-one with a pro for eight hours. The guide supplied him with a gourmet lunch, snacks, equipment, even tied different flies on the line and handed the rod to him as they moved downstream. He could not stop smiling or talking about it. And, because this was such a splurge for us, it meant a lot to him, too.

It was the men's equivalent of a getaway "spa experience" and WORTH EVERY PENNY!

lady laura said...

I have loved traveling with you! And I am so glad that your hubby enjoyed his gift. :)

Joye said...

I love anything quaint, and that little ghose town would be ideal for me...but I think my children would protest!! They love the city life. Looks like a great vacation. I have friends in Tennessee and this just reminds me that I really need to get out there for a family trip...

Valerie said...

Yes, it is like watching someone's vacation slides, but it has been fun! Thanks for bringing all of us along.
:)

Anna said...

Thank you, thank you for taking us along on your trip. I don't get to travel but I know many families will get ideas and maybe even follow your steps to these wonderful destinations!! I so enjoy your mentioning Andrews excitement and look forward to your daughters thoughts on her adventures with you in the future. I know traveling is not easy with kids it is so great that you two plan these outings for fun,learning and family time together. They are priceless.

Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, the people who show me vacation slides NEVER have thrift stores in their collection!

In fact, a lot of the slides/photos I've had to sit through don't even have people in them: "Here's the Grand Canyon at noon." "Here's the Grand Canyon at 12:10." "Here's the Grand Canyon at 12:15." etc. Not even, "Here's Grandma leaning too far over the Grand Canyon."

Yours were NOT a yawn.

Jora

Nancy said...

I live here in the small town of Manchester and I thank you for visiting our town but I wouldnt call our thrift store junky! It is for a valiant cause and with the budget they have, they do the best they can from generous donations.
Besides the sites you visited, you missed Rutledge Falls (site visited recently by a film crew for newest Hannah Montana movie), the famous Brantley farm where the first TN walking horses were bred and buried, and some of the best places to eat in the whole United States- Jiffy Burger on Hwy 41, J & G Pizza on Hwy 55.