Thursday, November 21, 2013
Our northern route to Ohio took us right through the middle of Alabama, up to Nashville, through Louisville, and into Ohio through Cincinnati. We drove straight through since we were in somewhat of a hurry to get there. The drive took about 14 hours and the loss of an hour by transitioning from the Central time zone to the Eastern time zone. Yes. The western part of Florida's panhandle is in the Central time zone. Most people don't realize this.
Anyway, on the way home, we decided to break the trip up into two days. The halfway point was in Nowhere, Alabama. Or maybe it was Nowhere, Tennessee. Either way, it was in the middle of nowhere. I'm pretty much a genius when it comes to maps. I'm directionally challenged, but I can read a map. Figure it out. So, I mapped us out an alternate route that took us through the eastern part of Tennessee, with a quick jog through the very northeast corner of Georgia, and back into Alabama. It only added 30 minutes to the drive and allowed us to stop in Chattanooga which is just about, smack dab halfway between Huber Heights, Ohio and Navarre, Florida.
We stayed at a pretty decent hotel in Chattanooga that was downtown. Ok. I have to tell you. I was pretty much unimpressed with the city itself. It was very blue collar and seemed run down. The surrounding area is beautiful with mountains and fall color and the Tennessee River. We checked out a local restaurant for dinner, the Terminal Brew House. We wanted something non-chain and having a selection of craft brews, as well as being close to our hotel, it seemed to be a winner. The Mister said that the beer was excellent. I had the house pinot noir and it was pretty good. We had to specifically ask the waiter if the girls could have soft drinks since he didn't bother to take their drink orders or even give them a glass of water. The food was so-so. Not horrible, but for the prices, nothing special. We opted to have the "seasonal steamed veggies" as our side dish and was served BEETS. Who in the holy heck serves beets? Who likes beets?!?! What kind of side is that? It was an unsatisfying meal, excellent selection of beers aside.
Overall, I didn't have the best impression of Chattanooga. I know. We were there for less than 24 hours, but from what we saw, it wasn't compelling enough for us to plan our next family vacation there. It's nice to know that it's a good halfway stop for the next time we drive to Ohio and we'd stay at the same hotel again too. They had a really good breakfast.