Pigeon Forge, TN
Elevation: 1,010 Feet
Let me preface this entire section with my dislike of the south. Which is even more insulting to southern people than if I were to say I disliked northern people. Northern people would probably shrug and walk along their merry way. Southern people are steeped in tradition, stale ideas and conceptions and have some wierd love of a land that we should all just let them have in their own autonomous collective. Hearing someone diss on their beloved Dixie is like peeing on the corner skirt of their double-wide.
At the same moment, I am exactly what they think of when they talk about a west coast liberal with all the cheezy contradictions and cliches well intact. I guess I would call it a draw.
And I have had fun generalizing and lumping all of the south into an ideology without any exceptions. Which by itself is as stupid as me saying "Let me preface this entire section with my dislike of the south."
The Pigeon Forge strip is not unlike the Vegas strip. Small differences might be instead of seeing "Hottest Bitches In The World Stripping For You" billboards, you would see things like "Christus Gardens: The Ultimate Religeous Experience" or "The Gospel Television Network." Country stars have found a nitch here with the Mandrelle Theater, Alabama Restaurant and the Dixie Darlin' herself, Dolly Parton's Dixie Stampede. The root'enest toot'enest money sucking hole this side of the Mason/Dixon line.
There were some brighter spots outside of the towns. We did some hiking and went to a pretty fun place called Ober Gatlinburg. I got to be with my son and wife out in the woods and be with the people who love us. Listen, skip Dollywood, save about forty bucks per person and go to a fun place like Ober Gatlinburg.