Waverly, TN - A Day of Planning

Trip Start Oct 17, 2012
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Flag of United States  , Tennessee
Sunday, November 4, 2012

When we woke up this morning we realized how lucky we were yesterday when the rain and hail came, if that makes any sense at all. Looking back we did everything right, checked the weather before leaving (rain not forecasted until after dark), rode diligently and without distractions (minus the one dog chase!); but when we chose to ride more than the 17 miles that meant we were commited to ride the whole 46 with no apparent place to bail out. Homes along the way were very few and far apart. Lisa and Dean's house was one of a handful that make up clusters of homes along these sometimes desolate rural areas. Many houses we saw were empty, some of which appear to be summer places or rehabs/ works in progress. This was true of Lisa and Dean's new neighbors that are from Zion, Illinois who come down four times a year. Then there are homes that appear to be abandoned which culminates a sense of aloneness, and sometimes even a feeling of desperation. So the lesson learned is to know when it's time to bail out, and to take help that is offered.
Today we decided that we (tongue-in-cheek) are urban riders rather than rural riders, and would rather ride on highways than on narrow country roads with huge hills, little riding room, and with nothing around us except those wily chasing' dogs!. So we spent the day changing our route to more traveled roads. We also attempted to watch the Bears' game. We saw all of the first ten minutes and the last six minutes as they clobbered Tennessee. GO BEARS!
Later, after Patrick returned home from a re-enactment faire with a performance of Celtic singers, we had great conversation. He told us about the history of the Nolan House and that it had at least one famous guest. Jesse James lived here for four years with his wife Zee, while hiding from the law. He rented land under his alias, Dave Howard and was known for bringing plenty of food to church socials that he was known to attend regularly. He also made a track near the farm where he would race his horse, Red Fox. His wife gave birth to twins here but both had died soon after and were buried at the Link Farm a few miles from the hotel. James moved away in 1878 or 79. The house has only had three owners since that time.
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