Part 16 ~ Tennessee Bound!

… Finally Tennessee Bound

Because Friday the 13th seemed like the perfect day to continue our eastward trek!🙄 But we were determined to be Tennessee bound ! Of course, we had no idea that it was, in fact, Friday the 13th👻

We decided that since we are not pressed for time in our travels, we would take shorter trips! Travel around 100-150 miles a day, find some random places to stop at rather than just passing by! Seeing more things using the same amount of gas!

We continued our work on the Mad Max Catio, and updates are coming soon on that! It’s super exciting how well the cats have adapted to the additions, and the journey to the back patio! Stay tuned for that!

Little Rock, Arkansas

Before we officially headed out of Arkansas, we stopped at a Harvest Host just outside of Little Rock! There were a few things we wanted to see, plus it was a great stopping point in the trip!

One of the best parts of my planned “excursions” to find anything weird, wacky, large or small, is that most times I only have an address! No business name, just the address, sometimes just a crossroad, sometimes an entire block location.  So lots of times I don’t know what is at the next stop! It only tells me the address!

Nancy’s Mystery Excursions ..?..

Not sure how “fun” Zach thinks that aspect is 🤔

The first oddity we found was The First Human Dissection Location! After a few laps around the park, we found the monument!!

Click the Pic for more!

When I plan our trips at our stopping points, I have a ton of places I look for things to do! I always look for “World’s Largest” near me, and the most hilarious stuff pops up! But lots of times, unique things do! And this next location was one of those things! It was listed as “an 80-ton Chinese Gate”, so that was enough for me to want to check it out!

Click Me for More Pics!

And what we found was pretty cool! The H.U. Lee International Gate and Garden!

In the middle of the concrete jungle was this cute little South Korean Garden. It wasn’t overly large, or small, but just right! Enough to find some peace!

Peace and Quiet

Right around the corner from the Garden was this Marker! I thought it was a clock at first, then a sundial, but it is, in fact, a compass! Clearly 🤔

In my quest for all things large, I came across The Trail of the Whispering Giants! It’s a series of wood carved sculptures by Artist Peter Toth. There are at least one in every state. I know that I read some of them have been moved, destroyed by whatever, or simply missing! But I love looking for series of things! So, we stopped and found this guy hiding in the park! Our first, but definitely not our last!

On our way to our last stop, which also happened to be where we were eating lunch, we ran into this lady!

Not sure what she is doing here in the middle of nowhere(ish), but we found her! And I’m pretty sure she isn’t the only one! 😂🤔

Soon I’ll have to plan on taking Zach to see the real one! Since that’s not something he has done, and I have!


Now we are getting to the best part of the day! Where we ate lunch!

The All Aboard Grill & Restaurant in Little Rock!

Seriously, they bring your food out by train! What is not to love! The food was good too! There are two tracks with two trains on each track, so the food moves out fairly quickly!

This is the kitchen window where the train picks up its delivery 😋

We got a Shrimp Po’ Boy to split (we always do this when we are out since we never each individually eat an entire meal! Saves on money, and leftover space!)

Finally Tennessee Bound

Our travels finally took us out of Arkansas and into Tennessee!

Our first stop was an overnight stop in Brownsville, Tennessee. Where we saw this amazingly odd metal sculpture!

Big Cities  😯 Tennesse

Then we stopped at some of the larger cities along Route 40 😁.

Nashville. And Knoxville.To be more exact!

We stayed a few miles outside of each city, but did travel in to see what they had in the weird and wacky realm.

Here’s what we found!

Nashville Tennessee Area

We only planned one overnight in the Nashville area, so we stayed at another Harvest Host location and got an early start the next morning to sightsee in Nashville, and the surrounding area.

Once again, we were on our “Mystery GPS Stop Excursion” so I never knew what was coming next! I know what’s on the list of things to see, but just not in what order we are actually seeing them !

Let the fun begin

Our first stop was the Giant Whisk!I love to bake (I’m not Baking Show worthy, but that’s a whole different story in this bus!) This also doubles as a bike rack! I’m just glad I didn’t have to move anyone’s bike for this pic!

😄Kidding, I wouldn’t, plus they’d be locked in place😄 Obviously 😄

Mariachi Frogs in Tennessee

Then we passed these dudes on the way to our next stop, so I grabbed a few quick pics!  Frogs are cool little creatures🐸

We stopped in Shelby Park next to find something that was called the dripping bird. We found a stainless steel bird that appeared to be melting. Reflection. It was unique, and looking at it through the swirling hole in the big piece of granite!

Tennessee Bound
Click for More pics!

Music Fans…

Finally, the last stop on our mystery excursion … The Grand Ole Opry!

Figured we couldn’t be in Nashville and not stop by! It was a quick stop, since it was still freezing outside (ok, maybe not freezing, but freezing to ME!) Definitely worth a return visit (in warmer months!)

After all, it had HUGE guitars 😀

Knoxville, Tennessee…

This was our last stop in Tennessee! It was kind of a dreary day, but we didn’t have the luxury of waiting for a better day! Especially since the weather didn’t appear to be improving drastically in the next few days! 

So we made the best of it! Ran to and from some locations in the cold, shivered a bit, bailed on some stuff. Yet overall, we had a great time!

Our first stop was the SunSphere!

We paid $5 each to go to the Observation Deck just because we wanted to see what it was all about! It took about 3 minutes to purchase the tickets on my phone, right there at the base of the elevator!

The views were great, but I’m sure on a sunnier day, they are amazing!

Next stop … The Knoxville Convention Center!

My main goal at the Knoxville Convention Center was seeing The World’s Largest Rubik’s Cube! I’m an 80’s kid, so it was kind of an absolute must for me!

It was large, and it almost took me out! I honestly thought it was a stationary cube, so when going to get my pic by it, I leaned fully into it! And went tumbling down! Did some kind of pathetic front roll, laughing the entire time! This video is me after I ran off, laughing so hard I had to sit down! 

Good thing we were alone in the building 😂

Click on the Rubik’s Cube to see more pics of it, plus all the other artwork we found while we were there!

Is that a HUGE Ball ?!?!

So while we were up in the Observatory, we saw a HUGE basketball!

Yes, of course we went and checked it out! And it was actually next on the list 😄

It’s the World’s Largest Basketball! That sucker weighs 10 Tons and has 96,000 dimples on it! It’s definitely LARGE!

Click For More!

We found some randomness as well! Weird stuff, big stuff, artsy stuff… our kind of stuff 😍

So first, we have some random “trippy” stairs! The pics don’t give the same effect that it does in person! It was also a very drab day, so the lighting was non-existant!! Still an amazing piece of art!

The Torchbearer

This guy always has his torch lit! I just love that!  


He also has a dog, at least that’s what I’m going with! He was hanging out in the same park, so there’s that!

Walking back to our car, we ran into this dinosaur in the “weeds” ! It wasn’t really in the middle of nowhere, it was near the entrance to the McClung Museum of Natural History! Click on the pic to check out the Museum’s Homepage!

So we spotted this dude, just out doing his job! Delivering some hungry college student their food!

And that concluded our time in the Nashville area! It was very busy, so we limited our sightseeing, knowing we will be back around!

Headed out of Nashville early the next morning, and arrived at our next stop not too long after! We are still doing short drive days to enjoy the sights, and to allow the bus to rest more while driving through the mountains!

We stopped in the Johnson City/Kingsport Area to check out some of the things they had there! It also happened to be the right distance to drive for the day🙂

Our first find was another Peter Toth Sculpture ~ Junaluska!


There we found more randomness. Seems like so many restaurants have HUGE stuff! 

↘Click Here to see all the Large Food Randomness in this area!↙

And our last stop in this area was pretty cool! It was a random hand holding molecules, and another set of molecules !

There’s More Here!


And now…. we are …

Out of Tennessee Bound!

So Until Next Time!

Missed a few parts of the story?? Catch up here!!

Parts 1-10Part 11 Part 12 Part 13 Part 14 Part 15 

Love the hats we wear? Zach makes them! Check out his work here


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