"Could I have this dance for the rest of my life?" - Anne Murray

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Quick Trip to Kentucky

A dear friend of mine was defending her dissertation at Spaulding University last week (Yeah Tina!). Serendipitously being so close to Lousiville (only a five hour drive) allowed me to go up and be a part of Tina's big day. She invited me to stay in her home in the pastoral rolling hills between Louisville and Lexington.

On the small farm surrounding her home live several burros who were cared for by Father Jones, the previous owner of the property. Tina now lives in the home that Father Jones' built and lived in. The burros are being cared for now by the landlords who live next door.

Tina, her friend Mary and I had a lovely, relaxing evening together on her porch, talking into the night, enjoying the soft night air and good conversation. The next morning we had breakfast and watched the birds on her pond from her other porch.  

After saying our goodbyes,  : (  I took the back roads down to Tennessee... 

passing through the lovely town on Shelbyville, then on southward through the Cumberland region of the Daniel Boone National Forest.  I made a stop at Cumberland Falls State Park to stretch my legs and get a feeling for this area made famous by so many old songs. (This is the home of bluegrass and old time music.) My first stop was at the lodge and I took a short hike along the cliffs above the Cumberland River and appreciated the early spring forest wildflowers. This one is a kind of stonecrop that was growing out of the cliff side.

This one is fire pink scarlet catchfly - Silene virginica:

These are star chickweed:

Pink wood sorrel:

False Solomon's seal:

The trail, lined with Philadelphia fleabane:

I drove on to the falls themselves and walked along the river, then down to the Lower Overlook area which offers this view of the falls.

Here's one of the more dramatic sections of the short Lower Overlook trail.

Spotted a new butterfly (for me) - a zebra swallowtail, with pale green stripes, on these bushes that may be snowball viburnum.

With all the sight seeing and back road explorations it took me all day to get back to Cove Mountain RV Park, and I was really tired, but it was the kind of driving I really enjoy.  Next I'll share some of our adventures in the Smoky Mountains.

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