Sunday, June 19, 2011

Chattanooga Day 5: The Pedestrian Bridge And The Park

Like most vacations (except those in Walt Disney World) after 5 days away on Friday morning I was ready to go home. Paula and I did our usual "pack up and get ready to check out" routine. We travel so well together, always have.

With the luggage loaded up and the Vue's gas tank full we could have easily just headed for the house. But there were a couple more things we wanted to do in Chattanooga.

We drove back to the downtown area and crossed the bridge to the north shore. Our destination was Coolidge Park. This is a wonderfully beautiful public recreation area with it's own carousel. I had planned on renting a bicycle and riding around the park on Thursday but the stormy weather put an end to those plans.

The last landmark we wanted to visit was the Walnut Street Bridge; just a short walk from the park. This is the world's longest pedestrian bridge; almost half a mile long. It spans the Tennessee River and connects the northern and southern sections of the city. The overview of the park and the river from the pedestrian bridge was amazing. Look at the first two pictures at the top of this post. To the right of the first picture you can see the wooden sidewalk of the pedestrian bridge.

The picture of the park shows the main recreation area in the foreground. As we walked past that part of the park on our way across the bridge I could see kids playing football, soccer, whiffle ball, and Frisbee. Next to the grassy area was a fountain where children were cooling of from the heat of the midday sun. The whole scene was real slice of Americana.

When we got across the bridge we found ourselves one block east of Market Street. Paula wanted to go to Cheeburger Cheeburger again for lunch. We walked down a very steep hill and then south to the restaurant.  Our meal was once again was very good. The waiter who seated us commented on how he liked our Disney t-shirts. He mentioned that he used to work at the Magic Kingdom in the merchandising department. I would have loved to have had a detailed conversation with him more but the place was very busy and he was working hard.

After lunch we walked back up Market Street to Rita's Italian Ice. We wanted one taste of our favorite frozen treat before we left. Paula got a small sugar free pineapple and I got a small root beer. It wasn't sugar free but I wanted it and it was delicious. As a remembrance of our rare treat I took a picture of Paula holding the cup in her hand (see above picture).  You can see her lovely manicured and painted fingernails.

The next picture I've posted was taken on the southern side of the pedestrian bridge. I really don't remember why the Great Dane statue was there but I just had to get a picture of it giving me a "high five". 

Once we were back in Coolidge Park we went to the carousel building. This was a wonderful carousel. The picture above gives you an idea of what it looks like but really doesn't do it justice. It had a pair of giant music boxes that played typical nickelodon style music. There were a variety of horses and animals that I'd never seen on a carousel before. They even had names. The lion's name was "Aslan" and the Ostrich was named "Olivia."

A ride only cost $1. Paula didn't want to ride but I did. Although I just stood and held on to a pole. I decided not to get on a horse. I mean I've ridden on a horse on the carousel in Disney World. Nothing could top that.

After the carousel ride it was time to get in the car and head up Interstate 24 toward Nashville and eventually back home. Our Chattanooga vacation was over. We had fun, did a lot of walking and were very tired. We decided that we've pretty much done all there is that we would want to do there and most likely won't ever go back. But this trip will be remembered as yet another illustration of just what a difference losing weight has made in the quality of our lives.

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