I arrived in Elizabethtown a little later than anticipated due to losing an hour as a result of crossing over into my final timezone! I arrived at Larry and Jennifer's home in Radcliff, just north of Elizabethtown about 5pm. Jennifer is a retired teacher from Portland Public Schools and I haven't seen her in about eight years. Her husband, Larry is from Kentucky and so they moved back here eight years ago. I had an opportunity to visit with Larry, Jennifer and their adorable dog Axel before having dinner plans with another colleague and friend.
Jamie, a colleague and one of my closest friends whom I met almost two years ago in Louisville at American School Health Association's conference happened to be doing a training in Elizabethtown the following day. In fact, his hotel was almost across the street from Jennifer's, so it was convenient for him to bring me to dinner. I haven't seen him since March, so our dinner conversation was super nerdy... around school health. We could check in about HECAT, PECAT, SHI, SHG, AFHK, ASHA, AAHPERD, KYCSH, KAHPERD, FRYSC, AHG, CSH, CSPAP, CDC... for hours. The acronyms go on and on. He persuaded me to come to hotel and fix his tires and tubes (I think he wanted to make sure I've been the one actually doing my bike maintenance!) and we went swimming (I'm a fish and always have a bathing suit with me, remember?) and he brought me back at 10:26, just in time, since Larry told Jamie my curfew was 10:30! ;)
I had more time to visit with Jennifer and Larry (and snuggle with Axel) in the morning before hopping on my bike at 9 and riding 9 miles to Jamie's training. Jamie was facilitating a training on Physical Education Curriculum Analysis Tool and CSPAP (Comprehensive School Physical Activity Programs) and Jacy Wooley, from the Alliance for a Healthier Generation (my charity!!) was facilitating a Healthy Schools Program workshop for Hardin County who are now on board with the Alliance starting this year! I couldn't NOT show up to this training and at least say hello. So, Jamie introduced me, told them some stories he loves to share about my trip and I got to answer questions and take a large group photo. I connected with Jacy for awhile and then I was on my way to Bardstown, bourbon capital of the WORLD. Not only bourbon capital of the world, but where I hit my 3000 mile mark! I arrived in Bardstown just as Jamie, who had finished his training at noon drove up and our friend/colleague Todd Davis was only 10 miles away. Todd is the PANT (Physical Activity, Nutrition, Tobacco) coordinator at the KY Dept of Ed (my counterpart when I was at the Dept of Ed in Oregon) and the three of us enjoyed an awesome lunch at Circa in Bardstown. I should mention, the weather here has been lovely. Like, Portland Oregon summertime weather. Warm, but not hot and not much humidity. We sat outside and the 3 of us enjoyed being together yet again! We all travel often for work and meet up all over the country quite regularly. Last time we were all together was Charlotte and I suspect we'll all be together in Myrtle Beach in October.
Todd left after lunch and Jamie had his bike with him so we got on bikes and cycled to Barton's Distillery. In the past couple of years, Jamie has taken me to many bourbon distilleries in Kentucky and I've officially completely the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. We took the tour, did a tasting (best part!) and cycled back to his car. Jamie left to go home for the weekend to Morehead and I cycled to my other colleague, Vicki's mother-in-law, Rita's home. Vicki works in public health in Kentucky, but works closely with the Dept of Education folks. Rita greeted me at the door and welcomed me into her lovely home. I had an opportunity to sit and visit with Rita, her daughter Penny and grandsons as they asked me question after question about my trip! Vicki came to pick me up and she and I went to a delicious dinner at Talbott Tavern. We had a great time checking in and I really appreciate Vicki coming to meet me for dinner and setting me up in Rita's home. I got back from dinner and basically crashed (so tired!) into a deep sleep. Rita offered me breakfast in the morning and Friday's ride was just perfect. I'm back on the ACA Trans-Am route and the roads were mostly isolated (not many cars) and rolling hills all day. Just perfect.
After so much time visiting with friends that I care about and love, it was nice to have some alone time on Friday. I'm an extravert, as I've said, but I cherish my alone time. It's so needed, even though I want to see everyone I love and care about all the time, while here. Friday's ride gave me the time to be 'back on' MY trip. Centered again. Although, one really nice break in the middle of the day was delightful. My colleague Barb Donica, whom I met probably ten years ago through Society of State Directors of Health and PE, brought a picnic lunch and met me at Lincoln Homestead State Park. We had a wonderful picnic (thanks Barb!), catching up on more school health acronyms (ha!) and said goodbye until ASHA in Myrtle Beach as well.
I enjoyed the afternoon ride and arrived at Todd and Jan's (and Ella and Noah) home in Harrodsburg. I mentioned Todd above, but he's a really good friend and colleague and I was just so excited to meet his family. I hear so much about his wife Jan and their kids and I'm thrilled they were willing to host me. It means a lot to me.
Todd brought me to the local bike shop so my bike could have it's first professional 'tune-up' on the trip and I got back and hung out with the kids a bit.