Send in the Animals Two by Two

The title probably gives it away. Today was one of the darkest, soggiest days I’ve ever spent on a motorcycle. My strategy of stopping and waiting for the storm to pass failed miserably today because there was wave after wave after wave of thunder showers followed simply by lots of rain.

Waited until 10:30 for the storms to pass before pulling out of Cookeville, TN

I made another great plan to stop at a “family diner” for breakfast in McMinnvillle, TN. I’m sure it would have been great. We were about 20 miles out of McMinnville and needed gas. We pulled in to a place that had a very small cafe along with the requisite convenience store. Once I looked at the radar on my phone and saw that another storm was almost on us, the decision was made to eat whatever this small cafe had for breakfast. It turned out to be a good choice as The Landing took pity on us and served breakfast long after their normal breakfast hours. It was great food and good service.

Storms closing in around us north of McMinnville, TN
The Landing – Cafe, gas station, and convenience store. Surprisingly good breakfast.

Over breakfast, we discussed 2 other attractions that would be great to see while we are in the area. Our route was going to take us directly through Lynchburg, TN home of Lem Motlow and his Jack Daniels Distillary. We waited so long for a storm to pass while we were in the diner, we decided to skip Old Number 7 (Jack Daniels) and head straight for the U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, AL. We had already visited Jack D before so we felt ok passing it up this time.

We had been riding in a very light rain all the way to Lynchburg so we had the rainsuits on (Ugh!). We stopped at another convenience store on the ouskirts of Lynchburg and the sun came out. I should have know it was a trick. As soon as we had the rain gear all packed away, the thunder started and back came the suits.

By the time we got to Fayette, TN it was raining so hard we had no choice but to pull over. Jana had been in the lead and was about 30 feet in front of me. I couldn’t see her, the road, other cars or anything else. It was a miserable time. I was worried that we were going to get run over by the crazy traffic. We managed to get the bikes off the roadway and parked at a compressed natural gas vehicle filling station. I can’t imagine that place gets used much. We sat there for at least 45 minutes.

I’m not going to bore you with the other stop-and-go segments of todays travels except to say that we were 30 mile short of our planned destination, Decatur, Alabama and neither of us wanted to go one more mile in the miserable downpour we were experiencing.

There were a few stops just to catch our breath and one stop to enjoy some fine dining at another gas station. After discussing the situation with Jana, the decision was made to find the closest motel to where we were standing even if we had already paid for the one in Decatur. The water on the roadways was getting dangerous and I think we made the right choice.

We are safely in another Holiday Inn Express in Huntsville, AL so if the weather clears, we still have a shot at the Rocket Museum here. I guess there may be a silver lining after all but I’m thinking the Ark might actually float down this street any minute.

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