Farm Collector Blogs > Aussie Trek Across America

July 15 to 16: Kentucky and Tennessee

by Ron Bywaters

Tags: road trip, trek across America, tractor drive, Kentucky, Tennessee,

Day 19

Today was planned as a sightseeing day, so everyone was up early and away at 8:30 a.m. to visit the Mammoth Cave.

The two-hour tour was extremely well organized and the cave quite spectacular — the longest cave system in the world. The two motor homes were used to convey the group, leaving the tractors at the RV Park in Cave City, Ky.

Cumber and Jeff had arrived into the park by the time we returned, so after a quick lunch we all headed off to Bowling Green, Ky., to meet up with Linda Dickerson who has kindly offered to host us for a dinner and overnight accommodation at the Kentucky University Department of Agriculture facilities. We arrived at 3:30 p.m. and were enthusiastically welcomed by Linda. The tractors were parked in the Equestrian Arena where quite a few local residents visited and then the mayor of Bowling Green, Elaine Walker, visited and made us very welcome. She presented Ron, on behalf of the group, with a “Key to the City.”

A sumptuous dinner followed — melt in the mouth steaks and an array of veggies and salad, all beautifully presented with floral arrangements and hay, making the table very “country.” Two of the local ladies had made a special treat for us — fried apple or cherry pies, served with homemade ice cream from Chaney’s Dairy Barn.

Another visitor was Christi Marksbury, from the Kentucky Agricultural Development Fund, who gave us information about the subsidies paid to encourage local agricultural producers from tobacco industry levies. All in all, a really enjoyable meal and event.

Day 20

We were indeed fortunate this morning to be invited to have breakfast at the Chaney’s Dairy Barn, a family run business which is the brainchild of Carl and Debra Chaney.

Carl’s family have farmed this diary property for generations, but only in recent years has he ventured into the Dairy Barn with Debra, making copious quantities of many different flavors of ice cream in their well-appointed kitchens and selling many locally produced items in a charming setting with lots of family and historical photos and mementos. The breakfast was delicious and we are learning that our “scones” are their “biscuits” and our “biscuits” are their “cookies”! If we all stay in the USA long enough, we will become experts in the correct terminology.

Bowling Green is proud to house the National Corvette Museum, so the opportunity to visit this facility could not be missed. The Corvette is America’s only true sports car and what a wonderful display of Corvettes are amassed there, from the first designs in the 1950s to today’s streamlined beauties. All these cars are shown in elegant settings with many scenes depicting various stages in the development of this motor vehicle. Also on display are the driving suits and paraphernalia of some of the great racing drivers in American history.

We were sad to leave Linda and Darrell and the welcoming people of Bowling Green — we have made some really good friendships during this trek.

Then it was down the Route 31 West again to Nashville and we booked into an RV park at Goodlettsville, Tenn. Eight of the crew took advantage of a short break in the itinerary to travel to Memphis, while the others made various arrangements to take in the sights. The day for those who remained in Goodlettsville was rounded off listening to a county and western singer, Paul Hill, entertaining in the RV park.

See photos and read more on Ron’s website,