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Taken with Old Louisville - Wednesday, March 6, 2013

This previous summer, I checked off an item on my bucket list - a barge tour of southern France.  We were 11 tourists and 6 staff.  It was everything I hoped and more.  One of the best parts of the trip was interacting with the other 10 passengers.  All of us seemed to click.  I promised all participants copies of my photos on the trip and they provided me mailing addresses.  As a result, I was able to send them the photos and exchange holiday cards.

Not too long after the holidays, I got an email from two couples in Louisville from the trip insisting I come for a visit.  Not only that, I was provided with three sets of dates from which to chose.  I chose a February date and booked my flight.

The flight was late but I was met at the airport by Tom.  Nancy was waiting at the house and had a delicious roast in the oven.  They have restored a beautiful old arts and craft house in the heart of old Louisville.  I had the entire third floor to myself (well, I did have company with Churchill the cat).  Tom and Nancy are the perfect hosts.  I’ve never been treated so well (or winded and dined so well)! 

The last time I saw Louisville, there was no interstate and we drove through the old downtown.  I think I was about 10 years old.  It looked totally in disrepair, grimy and dirty, and rather sad.  The change has been amazing.  There’s still a lot of work to do but the people of Louisville have put a lot of effort into preservation.

Tom and Nancy showed me old Louisville and new Louisville and every thing in between.  I pretty much fell in love with the architecture.  They tell me Louisville has the largest collection of Victorian era homes in the United States.  I can certainly believe it.  We had great walks through the various neighborhoods of old Louisville.  

Our first day we took a walk across the Ohio River.  An old railroad bridge had been converted into a pedestrian walkway.  The walkway ended on the Indiana side and we couldn’t descend because the state of Indiana had not completed their portion.  It’s a beautiful walk and I think the city has a real gem on its hands.  It was not officially open and it was a cold day, but there were plenty of strollers, joggers, and exercisers on the bridge.  Lunch was at a wonderful restaurant/deli overlooking the river. 

The next night we had dinner with another couple from the barge trip: Margy and Preston at their beautiful home out from the city center.  As we drove up, we saw several deer on the approach to their house.  It was really good to see them and we had a lot of vacation conversation to re-live.  Margy cooked a beautiful dinner and Preston made sure the wine kept flowing. 

I got to see Churchill Downs, several of the parks from the designs of Frederick Law Olmstead, and I got to eat at some really neat restaurants in Louisville. 

The last night, Tom and Nancy took me to Proof on Main.  It was named an Esquire “Best New Restaurant” and the food was superb.  I had a rabbit cassoulet that was amazing.  Tom picked a great wine from Oregon.  I highly recommend the place if you are ever in Louisville. 

The restaurant is next to the Garage Bar and 21c Museum Hotel.  The hotel has reserved 5000 square feet for art that frequently changes during the year.  We asked for and got a peek into the rooms and they are really very nice. 

Louisville is great!  Thanks for a wonderful visit!

© Fred Searcy 2017