We re-entered Tennessee today, where it all began a year ago! We were pleasantly reminded how beautiful the hills and waterways of the Cumberland are, as compared to all of the wonderful sights we’ve seen on this trip. It matches them in its own way.
Along the way we passed a houseboat washed up on shore, many floating logs to be aware of, birds, and the Kentucky State Penitentiary…..we never bore of the sights along the way – from the magnificent to the mundane.
And more birds…..the gulls followed in our wake for miles. I did throw crackers their way but I think they were more in hopes of catching a small fish or two from our wake.
Some of the beauty along the Cumberland was the homes tucked away on the tree-covered hillsides.
After researching “Bumpus Mills Marina” in the waterway guides, Karen advised Ron that it did not look like the place for us, but looked more like a fishing camp for the locals. And where the heck is “Bumpus Mills, Tennessee” anyway? But there was something about it calling to Ron. Around the bend and up the creek – there it was – and it appeared to be exactly what Karen had suspected – a rough looking fishing camp!
Not only were we the only transient boat there – but we were the biggest – being larger than the marina itself. We hung out the back, hung out the front, and hovered above the roof. At first we thought it funny, but humor soon gave way to realism, and in no time we began to appreciate the quaintness, the peacefulness and the sincereness of Wally and Vicka, owners of the marina. When we arrived, there sat Wally at the table in his small marina with a plate full of home-grown green beans in front of him. What a lunch! And what a simple life……
We took our usual evening stroll to look around the docks – it was a short stroll but interesting none the less.
Take note of the picnic table up the hill from us, complete with ladder and an old tire! Only in Tennessee!
Eventually other forms of life appeared. At sunset a couple of local boats went out to do some fishing. They were friendly folks.
Next morning, after sunrise and a bit of provisioning at Wally’s, we pulled out of the marina. Wally said he would sell anything from the refrigerator door on that side to the exit door on the other. So before pulling out I did a little shopping, buying some supplies along with a jar of sorghum molasses, a few homegrown tomatoes, and best of all – some of Wally’s green beans! Wally even let me get a handful of biscuits out of his freezer – “just reach right in and get you some” – right out of his bag of frozen biscuits – and he wouldn’t even let me pay for them.
The whole Bumpus Mills Marina experience turned out to be, well, just that – an experience! And one we wouldn’t have missed for anything.
RANDOM: I’m not sure how I captured the butterfly (moth?) in flight, along with (and looking larger than) the gulls.
I read that there is ONE restaurant in town, The Bumpus Meals Diner, but we had no transportation to get there. It had dozens of 5-star reviews, “just like Grandma’s kitchen”, “nicest people you could ever meet”, “home cooked meals”, and “truly a country folk diner”. Maybe next time!
We were told “It’s an ‘r to Clarksville, an ‘r to Costco, an ‘r to Sams, and an ‘r to Paducah – it’s about an ‘r to anywhere from Bumpus Mills”!