The rain that had plagued us on Friday was replaced with morning sunshine in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Cooler temperatures also had rolled in, and would set the tone for the day. Our trip had varied from daytime temperatures from the low 60s to the mid 90s, and we would end the trip with layers of clothing on as we rode.
The first order of business was breakfast, and the Fairfield Inn we stayed at only offered the traditional continental fare; the closest thing to hot food would be the packets of Quaker Instant Oatmeal that was offered, or nuking a cold hard boiled egg that was available for consumption. Neither sounded appetizing to either of us, so we walked next door to the Cracker Barrel, which is usually a safe bet. Arriving at 6am, which is also the time that they open, we found the doors locked. Slowly, over the next fifteen minutes, other diners accompanied us on their porch, utilizing the provided rocking chairs while my wife finally called the restaurant to find out if they were planning to open. Eventually somebody showed up to unlock the doors inside, to the delight of over twenty hungry travelers.
Forty-five minutes after we had ordered, the food still had not arrived. Other patrons were also getting restless, and after hearing that they had dropped my ordered country friend steak three times on the floor and had to start over, we tired of their lies and left. The manager extended the coffee we had drank as a free token of his hospitality, and as we walked out, others did as well. I CANNOT recommend the Cracker Barrel in Bowling Green to anybody…the service was non-existent, they opened their doors fifteen minutes late, and the waitresses aren’t truthful to their patrons. Avoid this restaurant, and give somebody else your business.
We found the local McDonald’s to give breakfast a third try, and we were successful. With full stomachs, we headed north on I-65; destination: home. Today’s ride got windier the closer we got to Indiana, and once in the Hoosier state, it seemed that the wind hit with a vengeance as we were getting closer to having the trip expire.
No big plans were on the itinerary today; our focus was to ride, ride, ride. Rest areas were visited, and we bypassed Louisville Harley-Davidson; one reason was the road construction slowing traffic to a crawl, and the other was the fact we had visited this dealership numerous times on other road trips. We did stop at Mann’s HD in Edinburgh, Indiana…but nothing found its way to our bike, and after a stop at Taco Bell to fuel the body again, we finished the ride home.
2,171 miles was the total from out the driveway to back into the garage. No issues to speak of regarding the Ultra Classic, other than some minor things like a loose clutch cable that will be tomorrow’s project, and a floorboard cover that came loose when we were ready to start the Blue Ridge Parkway leg of our adventure that was easily tightened in a gas station parking lot. With no mechanical breakdowns or injuries to my wife or I, it truly was a fantastic trip in that regard.
Overall gas mileage is estimated at close to 34 MPG; not bad with all the weight the bike carried, and the hills, mountains, “slam on the brake” curves, and strong headwinds all the way home we had encountered. Tonight’s project is to download the thousands of photos my wife and I took throughout the trip, delete the uninteresting ones, and perhaps do some photo editing on the best ones. I’ll do a few blog entries with photos and captions of some of the interesting ones as time comes up.