Levi Jackson Wilderness Road Park, London, Kentucky

From Asheville we took the scenic route between the Smoky and Appalachian mountains and headed to our next destination – Levi Jackson Wilderness Road Park in London, Kentucky.  It was a longer drive than we typically like to take but we wanted to be closer to our next destination.  LizzieBelle was over it after about three and a half hours.  She was antsy and wouldn’t settle down on my lap.  I finally put her towel on the floorboard between my feet and put her down there.  It took her twenty minutes or so before she settled down but she finally laid down and went to sleep.  That’s when I decided that from now on I would put her bed down there and see if that makes the trip easier for all of us.  By the last half hour of the trip we were all more than ready to arrive at the campground and get set up and settled in.

Speaking of her towel, there was a little incident right before we pulled out at the KOA.  I was walking her around trying to make sure she was all tinkled and poopied out before we started our journey when the neighbor dog wanted to say hello.  Even being blind and deaf LizzieBelle doesn’t mind other dogs ‘checking her out’ within reason.  This dog was a Boxer and as the owner was telling me that he sometimes will attack smaller dogs if they growl or snap at him I was thinking that I should grab LizzieBelle because there are times when she’s had enough of being ‘checked out’ and will snap at them to tell them so.  Before I could even finish the thought it happened.  She had had enough and snapped at him.  He attacked and before we could separate them they were both rolling a few feet down the hill right into the lake.  Thankfully it was shallow but poor Belle was laying in the water with her head and feet sticking up wondering what in the world just happened.  I snatched her up and did a quick assessment and found that she was OK, just a little startled and a muddy mess.  Since we were ready to pull out I had to squeeze between the slide out and the kitchen counter to get her towel while Ronnie dug a garden hose out of storage.  We rinsed and dried her off outside then we were finally on our way.  Dogs – ya gotta love ‘em!

We reached our destination – Levi Jackson Wilderness Road Park in London, Kentucky – around mid-afternoon.  We were there on a weekend so the campground was full.  It was a large campground with nice facilities and a unique history.  You can read about it HERE.

We backed up to the woods but our site was right across from the basketball court which wound up being a bit too much for these two old fogies.  It seemed the best time to play some basketball was in the evening.  Multiples balls constantly bouncing even after quiet time which was ten o’clock.  The bouncing balls could still be heard inside our camper and with the fan running.  Since falling to sleep was out of the question for me I got back up and edited some photos until the bouncing finally stopped and the court lights were turned off.  Whew, now this ol’ girl can get some sleep!  The next night we just planned on watching a movie hoping it would end about the same time as the bouncing balls.  Thankfully the timing worked out well.  And, thankfully, we were only here for two nights.

As has become our custom, after getting all set up we headed to town to see what’s there and to find a local place to eat.  We like checking out Main Streets and old downtowns so that’s where we headed.  We found two restaurants across from each other – The Abbey and The Butcher’s Pub.  Finding no more options we turned around and chose the one on the right, The Butcher’s Pub.

As I looked at all the flags and memorabilia from England displayed in the restaurant it dawned on me why there was an Abbey and a Pub downtown – we were in London, of course!  Well, London, Kentucky that is.  Having been to London several times I was curious as to how the town got its name.  I found the following from Wikipedia – “Upon the establishment of Laurel County in 1825, a vote was held to provide for the new area’s seat of government. The land offered by John and Jarvis Jackson was selected, along with their suggested name of London, honoring their English heritage.  The town was founded the next year, its post office established in 1831, and its city rights granted in 1836.

During the late1930s and early1940s, London served as a central collection agency for books donated to the Pack Horse Library Project. It also had a pack horse library which delivered books to rural residents in the mountains.”

Discovering the tidbit of information about the Pack Horse Library Project was a nice surprise.  I love books and libraries and have read the fictionalized version of the Pack Horse Library Project ‘The Giver of Stars’ by Jojo Moyes.  I had the privilege of meeting her at Snug Hollow B&B where I was employed at the time.  She was working on the book while there and I couldn’t wait until it was published.  To imagine people delivering books on horseback to the most rural parts of the Appalachians astounds me.  Anyway, if you like to read I’d encourage you to check out her book and make sure you read the acknowledgements!  As I said, it’s a fictionalized version but you’ll get the idea of the work involved in organizing such a library and the tenacity of those that thought getting books into the hands of the most rural peoples was of utmost importance.

I digress. Anyway, we enjoyed a tasty meal then headed back to the campground.

Since we were only here for two nights we used this time to do some errands.  We weren’t far from our old stomping grounds so we decided to put a few more things in our storage unit then head over to see my great-niece.  We picked up some pizza’s and headed over to see her and her family and to pick up our mail and some packages that we had sent to her place.  One of the items, OK two items, we were anxious to get was the electric bikes we purchased.

A couple at Salt Springs had a pair so I got the scoop from them.  They had nothing but good things to say about the brand and the bikes so we decided to bite the bullet and get some for ourselves.  They each weigh 64 pounds and they fold in half making it easy to put in the back of the truck when on the road.

We enjoy bike riding but with Ronnie’s bad knees and my out-of-shape legs riding bikes was out of the question.  With the aid of Pedal Assist when going uphill riding bikes would now be doable.  We couldn’t wait to charge the battery and check them out.

We enjoyed time spent with family and all too soon it was time to head back to the campground.  Once back in London we stopped to have the oil changed in the truck.  It was almost closing time and we were the only ones there.  Once we were good to go Ronnie asked the guys if it would be possible to have air put in our bike tires.  They graciously filled the tires and we were on our way.  Now all we had to do was charge the batteries and we could take our inaugural bike ride.  The batteries charged in about four hours but since it was already dark we would have to wait until tomorrow for that bike ride.

Tomorrow finally arrived and we were off and riding first thing in the morning.  It took me a bit to get the hang of getting on and off and getting started but the old saying “it’s just like riding a bike” is true.  It wasn’t long before I had the hang of it again and I began learning about the bike and how it operates.  The inaugural bike ride around the campground was awesome!   We did most of the pedaling with only a few pedal assists here and there.  The exercise was invigorating and much needed.  Now that we have no farm work to do we’ve both packed on a few pounds since we began full time RVing.  Lots of delicious food and a more sedentary lifestyle is not a good combination. Here’s hoping for some lost pounds in the future!

After our bike rides we casually began the process of packing up. Time to head to the next destination which was less than two hours away. Yay!

dates in London, Kentucky: May 20 – 22