A nice visit to a wonderful Gulf Beach town loaded with casinos. A must see is the Biloxi Visitor Center and watch the movie about Katrina.
Biloxi is all about the beach and seafood from the Gulf. Never a crowd at these beaches as they go on forever. Buy shrimp right from the boats at the docks. Oysters are grilled and baked many different ways. We were lucky to be there during 'Royal Red's' shrimp season and enjoyed these rare and delicious (they taste like Lobster) crustaceans.
It's been eleven years since hurricane Katrina you can still see many areas that are not rebuilt including decaying wood still in the water from docks and piers that were lost.
A 3 night stay at Majestic Oaks was just a few blocks from the beaches and minutes from the casinos and seafood restaurants galore!
Stayed right on the water (actually a Bayou) across the bridge from Mike's Sister Shelly and husband, Jim. Family visit time, lots of good meals and going down memory lane.
Pensacola (Home of the Blue Angels) has the locally famous Joe Patti's fish market (don't miss this if you ever visit) and Peg Leg Pete's for the best ever baked Oysters Rockefeller. Downtown, there's the Fun Urban Dining Al Fresco (a group of Airstream trailers turned food carts) and for Sunday Brunch enjoyed Five Sisters Blues Café. Great southern cooking (best fried green tomatoes) and live Jazz quartet.
And a visit wouldn't be complete without going to the beautiful, fine white sand shores on Pensacola Beach and the local fishing and boat docks.
His crab trap never 'runneth over' but Mike did catch a few big ones!
(Fishing off our pier was fun but nothing worth cleaning/keeping, just a few 'grunts'.)
Mike has always wanted a wood burning pizza oven and his dream came true recently when Ron found a Mexican terra cotta oven! Check off another bucket list item and add a new dimension to our "GLAMPING" lifestyle!
As we are posting this, we are watching weather (Tropical system 9) as it moves disorganized into the warm Gulf. If all goes well we are off to the Mississippi Gulf Casinos for two days before moving to NOLA. As of now the State Park (Bayou Segnette) across the Mississippi is still closed after having some flooding from the rain event that devastated Baton Rouge. Stay tuned!
We spent four nights in the Birmingham area at this campground. Good facilities and internet connection made this a convenient place to make some progress on our website, do some cleaning and laundry.
On our way to Pensacola, we made two stops highly recommended by Mike's Sister and Brother-in-law. First was Headley's Big Peach for a box of local grown peaches then we stopped at BBQ 65 for some great barbecue.
One night travel stop on our way to the Birmingham, Alabama area. Whitten Park is part of the Army Corps of Engineers system of lakes and canals that shorten the barge route from the Tennessee River to the Gulf by more than 800 miles. It is longer than the Panama Canal and has a drop of over 400 ft. with a vast system of locks. While our site was in the woods we overlooked a lake with a boat launch and beach area for swimming.
Stayed a week at Tom Sawyer right on the "Mighty Mississippi" watching the barge traffic day and night (check off bucket list!). You could see the river from our front window.
Tom Sawyer is just over the bridge from Memphis TN and the famous Beale Street entertainment district. Some say this is the home of "The Blues" and and where "Rock n Roll" was born. We can also say that after eating a lot of barbecue, so far Memphis 'Cue" is our favorite.
We were there during "Elvis Week" where devotees come from all over the world to celebrate everything ELVIS! We wanted to tour Graceland however, because of the celebration, the waiting line was over 1 1/2 hours.
Mike's cousin Sherwood Platt and Rose Rich moved to the Memphis area after losing both their homes in New Orleans to hurricane Katrina. We had a lot of great food and laughs with them and thoroughly enjoyed our visit.
Memphis sure has it's share of good and quirky places to eat. With Sherwood and Rose we had a great Vietnamese dinner and Sunday brunch on Mudd Island at 'Paulette's'.
Then there was the Beauty Shop Restaurant where Priscilla Presley used to get her hair done. We had two naughty dishes at 'Hog and Hominy', Caesar Salad with fried chicken skin croutons and a New Orleans staple, Poutine. Can you say heart attack? And a trip to Memphis would't be complete without some of Gus's 'World Famous' Fried Chicken!
The historic Peabody Hotel (ducks in the lobby) was a welcome wave of opulence and shopping at Lansky Bros (Clothier to the King!) was fun. Ron bought a unique Sport coat. Notice the house phones and phone booth still in service today.
Rose and Sherwood strongly suggested we go to the Belz Museum of Asian and Judaic Art. It was an amazing experience. We thoroughly enjoyed seeing the numerous jade sculptures, Oriental artifacts and were moved by the Judaic collection.
You can't miss the iconic pyramid downtown that has become the flagship store for the Bass Pro Shops. A visit there included an incredible store dedicated to the outdoors plus a unique hotel and the worlds tallest free standing elevator that takes you to the top of the building where there's a restaurant and observation decks.
Time to raise the Rainbow Flag (again)! A wonderful rustic but comfortable all male, clothing optional retreat nestled under tall whispering oaks about an hour south of Nashville. The relatively new RV area has full hook-ups on fairly level gravel sites. There were also lots of unique cabins and tent site areas. Good cell and internet along with 10 OTA channels. Every Saturday they sponsor a Pot Luck dinner. You bring a dish and they provide the protein. Around 75 men shared a great meal with fun stories and conversations. We met several guys that we will consider friends into the future. Music is a big part of this area and any given night there would be naked men playing guitar and singing on their porch. Gaylord also loved this place as numerous pet dogs roam freely and even visit the pool area. Everyone, including the dogs, got along great. All in all we would say this, so far, is one of our favorite 'rainbow' campgrounds. This place is well run, has nice amenities, is very friendly and sometimes...frisky!
Prior to going to our next stop about an hour south, we decided to stay closer to Nashville and explore the city. A great place to stay was right outside the city at Nashville Shores Resort. We had a great site (#42, see map) right on the lake.
Nashville. The city is a center for country music, healthcare, publishing, banking and transportation industries, and is home to numerous colleges and universities. It's called Music City, USA. And they mean it. We splurged and had a stellar meal at 'Etch' then walked around downtown. Live music is everywhere. We also visited a relic from the Worlds Fair they hosted in 1897 and then again in 1982 which was an exact replica of the Parthenon in Greece and home to the largest free standing statue in the eastern hemisphere, the statue of Athena Parthenos.
Our RV Adventure
Here's a record of our travels as we explore the USA. Blog posts are listed by month in descending order.