Week 1 In The Books
So the first full week is now in the books and we have learned some interesting lessons and made some significant progress.
We now have a new heat pump providing AC to our apartment in the commercial building, hot water courtesy of a new hot water heater, and we are beginning to get settled to the point of being comfortable and able to live. The biggest accomplishment of the week is that we finally have full-service internet and satellite television, so we now know what is going on in the world beyond Tellico Plains.
Parental Units Moving In One of the biggest activities of the week was that my parents made it down to join us at Mecca Camp Resort and we now have our first full hookup camp pad servicing their travel trailer. A couple of days of electrical work, some backwoods plumbing, and some manual dirt work...we were ready to roll.
So far, getting my parents settled and acclimated has been enjoyable. We really like having them close and appreciate the fact that we are able to be here for them when / if they need us. We are looking to purchase a manufactured home for them to live in on the property. Tomorrow, we will find out if the one they like will be available in the timeframe we need it.
The transition hasn't been without its fun and laughter! In the midst of everything, my father and his dog managed to get sprayed by a skunk sometime last night and we haven't been able to stop laughing since it happened!
Clean Up Efforts / Renovations
In order to get a spot cleared and ready for my parents' trailer, we ripped out about 150 to 200 feet of fencing. Additionally, we had a roll-off dumpster delivered so we can start clearing items out from the previous property owners. Only 2-days into filling the dumpster and I already need to have it picked up and taken to the dump! While clearing out the shed, came across the largest spider I have ever seen in my life as well as a family of mice. That Was Fun!
Remodeling the property is also a task we are undertaking right now. We are getting prepped to build out the office building for guest check-in, which will also serve as Julia's office. We have ordered flooring and trim, which we will pick up and install this week. We also have identified paint for the outside of the building and purchased samples in order to do some test painting to see if we like it.
In one exciting twist of fate, I managed to turn my beloved truck into an official farm truck this weekend. While cleaning out one of the sheds on the property, I got a little too loose with a 2x4 and said 2x4 went through the back window of my truck. Needless to say, I'm now driving around with a plastic tarp taped to the back of my truck while I wait until next Monday for my appointment with Safellite Auto Glass! Needless to say, my heart sunk a little when that one happened! I Love That Truck!
Bottom Line: Things are moving in a rapid fashion and we couldn't be more excited! However, we are the type of people who want to do everything at once and we need to understand patience is a virtue and things must happen in due time.
Park Engineering / Design
The more that we have spoken to people in the area, the more we are convinced that our adventure is one that meets a demand for this area. There is not a day that goes by where we don't see a camping rig pass our property on the highway and we know the only park capable of accommodating these rigs, is a national park, and has no pull-through sites and do not offer full hookup.
This past week, we met with an Engineering Firm to get us moving in the right direction regarding the submission of proposals and designs. The firm, based out of Knoxville, put us in touch with a design firm that is familiar with designing RV Camp Resorts in Eastern Tennessee. We will be meeting with him, as well as others, this week in order to begin the design process. We have put together GPS-based overlays showing how we envision the park and are excited to see what a designer might do with our vision.
Engaging in a contract with the design firm will be Step 1 and will hope to have a firm on contract by the end of the coming week.
Lastly, we were able to spend some time today showing my parents the area. We traveled up the mountain about 20 minutes from our place and showed them the lake at Indian Boundary National Park. We also took them to Bald River Falls about 15 minutes from our place so they could see the beautiful waterfalls and get some pictures. My parents are eager to get their kayaks out of storage and try them out on the lake.
We also had an opportunity to get my parents familiar with the surrounding communities. We drove to Athens, Madisonville, Etowah, and Maryville over the course of the past few days. We also were finally able to take them to our favorite restaurant in Tellico Plains, Iron Works Grill, and had dinner on the river this evening, which was absolutely delicious and the restaurant staff was amazing as usual.
Closing Out For The Week
It's become very clear that I need to do this blog more than once per week, so I'm going to begin posting on Thursdays and Sundays each week to detail our progress. We are so thankful to our friends and family who have been sharing our story with others. You ALL are nothing short of amazing and we LOVE each and every one of you!
Once Again.... from our family to yours! May God Bless You and Keep You Safe and Healthy!
Chris & Julia Jones - Mecca Camp Resort