We’re back from the running of the 197th Indianapolis 500! As in past years, our pilgrimage to the Speedway was a mixed-up jumble of comings and goings, with some of the family retired, some taking a week off work, and some working and commuting back and forth for the time trials and race. Sister Johanna (Tink), Micah, and I lasted all 11 days. Tom and Caleb shuttled in and out for Time Trials and race day weekends.
This was our second year setting up headquarters at Lake Haven
Resort which is 11 easy miles from the track. It is a great location for fast track access . . . but not the greatest for a camping experience.
Tink drove up from Tennessee in the Tink 'r Pod, I drove the Silvermine
over, and Micah met us on Thursday before Time Trial Saturday. We spent the afternoon readying to stay for seven days -- and we ordered pizza for supper!
Wednesday was the American Family Community Day Festival, and threatened by dark clouds and rain, Micah, Tink, and I went to the track for an afternoon driver autograph session:
I opted out of the autograph session and walked around the Speedway enjoying all the flavors of the Speedway!
We have made this trek to the track for many years and have employed many different strategies for attending. I decided it was about time to get a tally of attendance for our family:
Tom = 39 years
Ella - 35 years
Micah = 23 years
Caleb = 18 years
Tink = 14 years
Check back in a few days to follow our speedway-side race report!
You can say that the camping season is upon us with hardly time to unpack the Silvermine and clean it up before heading out again. I have a brief 48 hours in town before flying with Grandma to Texas, and I need to tell you about the 5 days I just finished in Kentucky! This hectic schedule is exactly what I have been waiting for all winter!
Remember that TAB group that I left last Sunday in Townsend, Tennessee? Several of them were not ready to give up the rally ghost yet, and on Monday they headed north on the caravan trail for a night at Cumberland Falls State Park and then on to My Old Kentucky Home State Park. Sister Tink was with them, and there was only one thing for me to do – deliver Tom home, repack, and head out to join them in Kentucky!
I set out for Kentucky at 8:00 Wednesday morning with a 5 hour drive ahead of me. My Old Kentucky Home Campground was only a mile away from Bardstown, KY, (the second oldest town in Kentucky) , an hour away from Churchill Downs (where the Kentucky Derby was to be run on Saturday,) and smack dab in the middle of the Bourbon Trail (where I had some unfinished distilleries to work on!)
The campground was small, and I could stand in one place and turn in a slow circle, clicking off a picture of each of our seven set-ups. Each trailer is in position and proportion from my center vantage-point:
Thursday Tink and I knocked off some of that unfinished business: a tour of the Heaven Hill Distillery located a short mile from our campground. It was a beautiful facility complete with a tour and tasting . . . . and gift shop!
Friday was the "Oaks" race at Churchill Downs which was dedicated to an all-filly field. Cindy, Tink and I happened to be shopping in Bardstown and saw the owner of "PINK" all decked out in her pink Oaks get-up and watering her plants. Of course we had to stop and shop, and Cindy found some cute little "retirement" clothes!
For the running of the Oaks race, our camping consortium was invited up to the golf clubhouse (part of the camping facility) to view the race on the pro-shop TV. Armed with a Kentucky Woods Bourbon Barrel Cake and a pitcher of bourbon mixed drinks, we settled into the comfort of the wrap-around porch, rocking chairs, and picnic table, while a downpour of rain moved in!
Although we were comfortable on the clubhouse porch, at some point we all had to brave the wild rainstorm through the trees and back to our campers -- where we hunkered down for the rest of the night!
And that was the rest of the story all day Saturday . . . rain! Facing the inevitable the TAB group pulled up stakes and headed for home early Saturday morning. Johanna and Steve and Cindy and made the best of a wet situation with a few inside touring excursions on Saturday.
Saturday at 5:00 we ventured out to the Old Town Pub in downtown Bardstown for eats, drinks, and the running of the Kentucky Derby. Mirroring our weather those racers ran in thick mud and heavy rain, while the Derby fashionistas languished in their drooping headgear!
At that point it was all over except for a cozy night in the confines of the Silvermine and a wet hook-up to head for home on Sunday morning. Six hours later when Tom welcomed me home with a big hug -- my entire backside was still WET!
I'll leave you with a picture of the Silvermine and the Tink 'R Pod!
We don’t go camping any more . . . we go ‘streamin’ ! The “SIlvermine and His” is our 2016 23' Airstream, and ‘streamin’ is the name we use to describe our adventures. Stream along as we document everything from weekend trips to longer summer excursions and full-blown vacations. You know what they say: if you’re not in an Airstream – you’re just camping!
Tom & Ella Brown