Lucky Number 13

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As you may remember readingĀ here, we stayed with our friends Jenna & Adam in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

But before we begin…intros!

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Jenna (and little Owen)!

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Adam!

Night Numero Uno in Knoxville

Everything we ate in Knoxville tasted like it had been whipped up by the finest chefs in heaven.

I know, I know…we’re talking about food AGAIN?

Yes, yes we are.

It’s like they think they’re the Jim Gaffigan’s of blogging or something…

Anyway, after we met up with Jenna and Adam and were introduced to their two adorable kitties, Jenna took us out to her favorite BBQ place. It’s been awesome staying with locals because they tell you about all the best places to visit, like this one: Sweet P’s Barbeque.

Now, both Anne & I are already huge fans of pulled pork but this place took things to another level. Not only did we get some pretty generous servings of BBQ pulled pork, but Sweet P’s had four other varieties of BBQ sauce to choose from and add to your pork. AND they gave us macaroni (yum) and green beans. Thank you Jenna & Adam!

Afterward, we picked up some DVDs and called it a night.

That brings us to day two.

Relaxation & Noms.

Day two at Adam and Jenna’s was much more laid back, something we were in dire need of after our constant location changes. (Sometimes it feels like even 72 hours of sleep won’t cut it.)

Saturday morning we awoke to the smell of a breakfast feast. Bacon? Yes. Ham & Egg Casserole? Yes. Perfect deliciousness? Yes.

We checked out Super Target for the very first time in Knoxville. The best way I can describe my excitement in going here is to say that if I were a cat, this would be like visiting a three story climbing tower (complete with catnip pillows) for the first time.

That night Adam’s sister’s family came over for a dinner of chili and corn bread (also DELICIOUS) and we spent our 2012 St. Patrick’s Day in pleasant conversation.

Our Mini-Hike

Our last full day in Knoxville started out with a church service and a tasty meal at Adam’s favorite Italian restaurant.

Then we headed off to the city we’d heard so much about…Gatlinburg!

First stop: the Smokey Mountains.

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

National Park Stop #2.

We’d decided to do some hiking while we were in the Smokey Mountains since checking out a placed preserved for it’s natural beauty from the inside of our car just seemed wrong…

“Which hike should we go on?” we asked ourselves.

But before we could decide on a trail we ran into something even more blasphemous than viewing a national park from your car window – Bible thumping. Yes, at the entrance to the beautiful Smokey Mountains stood a man on a bench shouting at everyone in sight about the woes of hell and probably the horrors of hiking in national parks…but don’t quote me on that second part.

After accidentally stealing a $0.50 park map, we were off to Cataract Falls.

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

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It had rained a few days before we began our hike to the falls which made our journey that much more interesting.

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Luckily, we’re adventurous.

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

In the end, it turned out to be a worth-while hike because the falls were beautiful.

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

It seems we just can’t shake that San Diego side of us though, because we brought a towel with us in hopes of some nice relaxation by the water. FYI: Waterfalls are not at all like beaches – there are bugs, dirt and more bugs. Things didn’t work out with the towel.

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Sigh.

Adventures in Fantasy Golf

Visiting Gatlinburg and the nearby city of Pigeon Forge was like visiting Las Vegas after a recent collision with Disney World. It was chaos and over-the-top styled buildings, complete with flashing lights.

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

We played Fantasy Golf while we were there and toured the free magic museum part of the upside-down Wonderworks building.

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

Our extended stint of mini-golf behind two hillbillies…

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

See the hillbillies in the background looking confused?

Knoxville & Gatlinburg, Tennessee

We had lots of extra time to take amusing pictures.

To end our adventurous day out, Anne and I headed out with Jenna for some late-night ice cream at Bruster’s. I recommend the Coffee Cake Streusel…mmm.

And that ends the tale of Knoxville – lucky number 13.

In other news, my taxes are finally finished – here’s to hoping that none of us get audited! ;)

Until next time,

Rachel

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