After leaving Nashville, Tennessee, and stopping for the night, I grabbed my travel book and read up what there was to do in nearby Louisville, Kentucky on the way to Madison, Indiana.
Louisville bats! I actually have to think that in order for my tongue to say the name of the city correctly. I want to draw it out slowly and it comes out sounding much like I say Hallsville.
I meandered around downtown Louisville for about four hours. It’s a pretty city with large buildings and it’s proud of its Kentucky Derby heritage.
While walking downtown, I received a text from Richard, which sort of startled me, since the company where he works is located there. I thought it was a little strange that I was in that town when he decided to text to see how my trip was going. I laughed at the coincidence of that.
Louisville on this Saturday was filled with people strolling around the streets in the pursuit of food, sight-seeing, and entertainment. I was doing two of the three. The buildings were impressive and there were lots of flowers in planters.
I bought a ticket for a 3:00 cruise. Somewhat disappointed because it was the smaller steamer instead of the big paddle boat steamer. So, I strolled between the streets of third and fifth taking pictures and people watching. I ended back by the river about 2:30 and boarded the steamer for an hour ride. Luckily I met two couples from Indianapolis who were celebrating one of the ladies turning thirty. I sat next to John (a sweet fluke) who was very talkative . The cruise was enjoyable and I heard more history of what was lining the shore than I cared to know. The narrator talked the entire hour without a pause, and she didn’t have to use a script. Obviously she loved the river and wanted to tell all she knew. I loved her laugh and she used some expressions that we usually don’t hear in Texas. ‘Cool beans!’ was one that stood out.
The weather was a little cool, but I enjoyed the sunshine and the flowers were still fresh, unlike our flowers at home, which were already suffering under the Texas heat. I left Louisville about 4:30 and headed onward toward Madison, Indiana.
When I drove over the Ohio River I came around the curve and there came around the curve and there was Madison. It sits in a valley and has a beautiful old downtown area with shops and historic houses.
The Hillside Inn was one of those mid-modern hotels that was probably in its prime in the early 60’s. It was built on a beautiful hill with a spectacular view of the Ohio River and the downtown area.
The pictures on the Internet were one of reasons I decided to spend a couple of days in this quaint town. Nothing special going on there, just the beauty of the river and the smallness of the town. That’s what drew me to it. Obviously, it is a popular destination of motorcycle trips because there were about eight motorcycles at the Hillside Inn and I passed quite a few while driving around the area was Madison. Nestled in a valley, it has a beautiful, colorful downtown area with shops and historic houses.
The Ohio River’s tranquility was breathtaking. There is a river walk that goes along the river about a mile and a half. It’s lit up at night with small street lamps that spill out soft yellow light. Benches beckoned me to stop and sit and watch the river, the barges, and the boat traffic going by. I couldn’t take a river trip on it because the Ohio River was flooding up-stream and they weren’t doing tours, but I did enjoy the beauty.
On Sunday, I attended church that had a beautiful organ. People weren’t overly friendly, but it was a pleasant service. I spent the day exploring shops. They had some unique type of stores with gourmet food, artsy things, and antique shops. I walked the streets enjoying the historic homes and buildings. The flower gardens were amazing! I took way too many pictures of flowers.
While walking along it my first evening there, a true paddle boat steamer cruised in. It’s Calliope announcing to everyone that she had arrived. The Queen of the Mississippi docked for a while and its passengers disembarked. There were only about 20 people who got off of the steamer. I’m not sure how long she stayed because evening came and I returned to the Hillside Inn to snuggle into the softest comfortable bed that I had slept in for a while. The room was small, but it was so pretty and inviting.
The town was lively and the area well used. It hadn’t been forgotten by time, but enjoyed with people milling about enjoying its sidewalks, community pool, parks, and the river. It must be gorgeous in the fall and winter when it’s colored with the colors of fall and the white of winter. I ate pizza and ice cream and stopped to talk to whoever would visit with me. At that time I wish I had a person with me to share all the beauty of the day.
Madison does have a newer part of town, but I preferred to stay in the old part and soak up its nostalgia. Imagining what it was like when the river was a major part of its history and the historic houses were actually used as homes. It also has a beautiful historic cemetery that I explored.
I said goodbye to the quaintness of Madison and eagerly looked forward to meeting Cameron in New York. The road stretched out before me and I drove on.