Day 16 - Smithville, Tennessee

I wish I was able to start this with "I'm sitting at the bar" but there isn't one. A whole day of football and rain outside, and no bar. Tennessee is a really sad place.

So I woke up in my Sparta motel room this morning to the sound of rain and thunder. About 7:00 I went outside, and it was raining very lightly and was about 60 degrees. So I walked up the block to the Krystal (a burger joint like White Castle with tiny little burgers) and had a better-than-I-expected breakfast. When I walked back the rain had stopped.

So I was hopefully hoping that the front was through and the rain was done. The Weather Channel was ambiguous. So I packed up the bike and hit the road. I made it 15 miles, and the rain started again. And the temperature started dropping. After 10 more miles, I was here in Smithville, it was about 50 degrees outside, still raining, with a headwind. I decided it was a good day to take a rest and sit in the motel room and watch football.

So that's what I did.

I only went 24 miles. Not much else to report.

So I'll just ramble about the culture of Tennessee. There are a lot of churches here. According to the local paper, there are more big shots who've raised $1,000,000 for George Bush than any other state. I've spent a lot of time watching the Weather Channel on TV the last couple days. They have ads on the Weather Channel featuring Tom Ridge talking about how to be ready for terrorist attacks. Then today I came upon this:

BushCampaignAd (124K)

So I don't recall ever seeing a homeland security ad or billboard in Maryland. I'm thinking this is more about campaigning for president than educating people about terrorist attacks. I think such ads will be effective in swaying Tennessee voters for Bush, much more than they would be in swaying Maryland voters, and that's why these billboards are in Tennessee. I doubt Tennessee is way up there on the list of Al Qaida targets. Maybe Osama Bin Laden is gonna fly a plane into the Grand Old Opry. Right.

Here is a map of today's brief excursion.

Actual16 (127K)