Sunday, April 4, 2010

An Outing

J. decided yesterday morning that we were due for a day off from the rigors of setting up housekeeping in a new place. He announced that we would head toward Renfro Valley, a destination of bluegrass and old time country music lovers. On the way he wanted to find a particular eating place.

My dear Wyoming neighbor, Sue, paid a visit to her sister in Kentucky last autumn.  One of the highlights of Sue's trip was a meal at the Bread of Life Cafe. The cafe is part of a ministry established by Jerry Tucker and his late wife, Sandy, to provide care for handicapped and neglected children.

The interior of the cafe is homey, decorated in a style I call "country sampler" [after the magazine of that name] with a gift shop which sells many items featured in the decor of the dining area. The whole place had a happy bustling air. Jerry Tucker was eating at one of the corner tables, thronged about by young people who stopped to hug him, adults who lingered to chat.
We had a good meal chosen from a bountiful buffet.  I was impressed that my tea was served with a fat brown teapot and a pretty flowered cup and saucer.
If you would like to read about the Galilean Children's Home, the link should take you there.

Galilean Children's Home

The intermittent rain showers of the morning had stopped by the time we reached the Renfro Valley Entertainment Center. J. fondly recalls stopping there a number of times years ago when his trucking runs brought him to the area on a Saturday evening.  Although we weren't certain what to expect this early in the season, we found that a Bluegrass Gospel concert was due to start in half an hour.
We bought tickets and were led to seats in the third row from the stage. The concert hall was built in 1939--the floor boards shivered under every footstep and there was the smell of well seasoned wood from the paneled walls which display huge posters of famous country music performers.
We listened and watched as instruments were tuned, mikes arranged, lights adjusted on the stage.
The musicians were top notch--all were fine vocalists as well as masters of several instruments.
90 minutes of lively gospel music passed all too quickly with solos, quartet numbers, some performed a capella in impeccable harmony.

Outside, after the show, the sun had emerged from behind the clouds.
We went through the tunnel which leads under the road and ordered tea at the restaurant.

There is a museum on the grounds consisting of a number of carefully moved and reconstructed old log homes and shop buildings from the area. I was interested to learn that early log cabins here were made from yellow poplar and chestnut logs.
Plantings of spring flowers surrounded the buildings and walkways.
We were enjoying ourselves to the degree that we decided to stay for the early evening show--classic country music--more J's genre than mine--but again, well performed.
Our only complaint was that the sound system was cranked rather high!
We were home about 9:15--to an excited welcome from Pebbles who demanded her delayed supper.
In the house the cats likewise let us know that they had been LEFT ALONE  for a good many hours!


  1. Sounds like you had a good time. It's always good to have some time off.....


  2. How interesting this all was ...and reading about the home and how it started. I love all live music as long as its performed with talent and passion

  3. I am SO enjoying reading about your new life in Kentucky. It sounds quite a bit different from Wyoming, that's for sure!

  4. Sounds like a perfect day to take an outing...and you both really needed some rest and relaxation! My father and i went to hear Bluegrass 2 weekends ago in Lucketts, VA, in an old converted school building. One of the guys is the original dobro player from the Seldom Scene. We had a grand time, too. Funny about Pebbles and the cats...mine do the same can practically see them looking at watches on their little furry wrists and going "you know you're 2 hours and 27 minutes late with our supper!"