Saturday, July 7th
I got up at 7:15 to find that Pete was already awake. It was good to be able to sleep in a little due to the time zone change and the short drive today (meaning we didn’t have to start or meet as early) because we’d been going non-stop; going to bed late and getting up early. We left the hotel at 8:40 and drove about 25 mins to the morning meeting point at The Loveless Cafe. It was a cool little Cracker Barrel-ey type restaurant.
After parking, I ran into Paul and Teresa (Sylvia’s parents) and we talked about last night at the Wildhorse Saloon. While walking to register I ran into Jameson’s 8 year old son and talked to him for a bit. It’s really cool being the age that I am and being able to be to this kid what other older kids were to me; a “cool” older guy who listens to them and makes them feel cool.
Jump to the drivers meeting. To me standing near a couple looking at an iPad with cool graphic design posters on it. After the meeting I asked them about it and they told me it was the work of a local (Nashville) designer. The art was done by Family Tree design and it reminded me of some the posters done by Invisible Creature.
Jump to the highway and Pete leading a small-ish pack of Mini’s to the auto cross at LP Field, home of the Tennessee Titans. While Pete drove a couple cars on the autocross, I searched the parking lot for other drivers who were familiar to [us] me. I ran into Izzy (of the Tom and Izzy “Clone Cooper” R53 JCW car)* whom I’d met the first day. They too had rally stickers on their car. In any case, we talked and compared notes about what happened at the saloon last night. I asked what their plans were for the drive and it wasn’t exactly the same as ours, so I ruled them out for a “leaving with” crew.
After Pete was done I pitched the idea of making another attempt to go to Third Man Records. Since the day seemed more loose, the ride seemed shorter, and we didn’t have a crew to run with, he agreed.
Jump to a few miles down the road. To us pulling up to Third Man Records. The parking lot was tiny and the gift shop was too. It was a veritable White Stripes museum filled with quirky WS memorabilia on the walls and behind glass. Additionally, there was a small hallway with gold and platinum records. While there, I ended up buying a TMR t-shirt (which I’ll probably never wear) and Wanda Jackson CD (The Party Ain’t Over). $44 and a couple of pictures later and we were on to Louisville.
We got to 40 West and it was a parking lot. We only had to go four exits, but it took maybe 20 or more minutes. Eventually we were on I 60 North and the speed increased to 70. The only negative was that we weren’t with a convoy. While driving along, Pete and I were deciding whether or not to follow the Mini directions (which were out of the way) or follow the GPS which would be more direct. We decided to follow the Mini directions, but when it came time to take exit 112, we weren’t paying attention and missed it. GPS it was.
As we made our way towards Louisville, I looked ahead on the Mini directions only to find that we were going to drive by Bowling Green, Kentucky. For those of you who don’t know Bowling Green is famous for being the birthplace of the Corvette. I had been to the GM Corvette factory during a different road trip in 2006 but Pete had never been before. After a short back and forth we decided to see how close it was once we got to a Bowling Green exit. It turned out to be only 7 miles away, so we went.
Jump to the GM factory and there’s a sign that says there will be no tours today. Come to find out that not only do they not do tours on Saturday, but also that the factory is closed throughout July. All was not lost and we decided to drive across the street to the Corvette museum. Pete looked around the gift shop for something for his brother. I looked at the price to enter the actual museum part of the building and it was $8 (with AAA discount) for adults. Since we were already behind the rest of the pack and we didn’t want to spend the (all be it short) money or time, we decided to skip the museum too. We hopped in the car and decided to get a bite to eat at the nearby Wendy’s.
Jump to earlier in the day, in the Tennessee Titans parking lot where we met up with the Pensylvania Mini that we had been hauling ass with yesterday. We asked them what their plans were, and they too seemed a little different than our, so we excluded the idea of running with them from the days ride.
Back at the museum we are leaving but first decide to pull around front to get a better view of the building for a photo op. As we round the corner, who do we see sitting in the front lot but the Pennsylvania Mini! Pete and I had been talking about getting the pic, then going to Wendy’s to get water and then straight shooting it down I-65 North to Louisville. We pulled up next to them and surprisingly they had the same idea.
After a short stop at the Wendy’s across the street, we jumped on I-65 (Abe Lincoln Memorial Express Way)** and headed North. Shortly after getting on the highway we were joined by none other than Clone Cooper (the R53 JCW)! We had ourselves a small three car convoy; it was great. We kept moving in 108 degree temperatures passing by a sign for a dinosaur exhibit with a big T-Rex on the other side of the highway to advertise it. This led to some interesting radio banter.
A little further down the road we passed a major accident 39 miles outside of Louisville caused by a blown tire. All along the south we’d been passing shards of blown tires scattered along the highway. Pete and I chalked them up to the speeding that’s done on these highways combined with the extreme heat. A short while later we passed a sign for the Jim Beam distillery but decided to keep on trucking. Down the road a piece we passed signs for Fort Knox. We joked with our little convoy about doing an Italian Job style robbery. We did after all have three Mini Coopers.
Jump to just outside of Louisville and we see signs for Six Flags Kentucky Kingdom. I would like to go, but at the same time I’m pretty sure it’s SBNO. A short while later, after passing an airport and some traffic we are finally at our hotel. We arrived at 6:20-ish.
Pete had apparently been talking back and forth with Sylvia about something to do tonight since there wasn’t an official night event that we were going to. We decided to meet Sylvia and her parents at a mini (ell oh ell) golf place. We played a fun round of 18 holes and then Pete, Sylvia, and her Dad chased it with some go karting. After that we split.
On the way back to the hotel Pete and I got Wendy’s for dinner. Unfortunately we did not see the WAFFEL HOUSE, the White Castle (at which neither of us have ever eaten) or the KFC (only a big deal because we’d be eating Kentucky Fried Chicken in Kentucky) until after we ate at Wendy’s.
Detours plagued us for the third time (first Charlotte, then Nashville, and now here) not allowing us to take the one exit we needed to get us back to the hotel. Luckily the detour led us to a Shell Station where we ran into fellow MttS participants and topped off the gas. We didn’t get back to the room until about 11:40-ish.
Trip distance: 208 miles
*Click here to check out Tom’s Tumblr
**I guess if we had stuck to the route Mini gave us we would have gone by Abe Lincoln’s childhood home.
Sidenote: If I didn’t already add this, it was 108 degrees during the drive today.