I was heading south on US43, also known locally as Andrew Jackson Highway, in rural Tennessee last week when I went past an old building that made me instinctively put my foot on the brakes. Luckily there was no one behind me as I scrubbed off speed rapidly and was looking for a place to pull over and turn around. While my beagle, Ruby, was hanging on for dear life I turned right into an Amish furniture parking lot and positioned myself to get back across the highway and back to the building. I thought it was an antique store but it turned out to be a store that was antique, if you know what I mean.
Ruby and I got out of the van and started to look around outside. When I came around to the front porch I saw the "Closed" sign on the door. Oh well. I took some shots out front and the door opened up. "C'mon in, I'm closed, but help yourself," said the owner, Mike.
I walked back in time when Ruby and I stepped inside. Mike, a gentleman in his 60's, told me it was his granddaddy's place that he started in 1942. Mike has reopened it after retiring from the Army (Special Forces) and the State Department. It still serves as a Greyhound Bus stop that the local Amish in Ethridge use when traveling. The only modern thing in the place was the computer system for Greyhound to print the tickets!
We talked for over an hour about his granddad, the store, Ethridge, the Amish, his service in Vietnam all the way to Iraq, and beagles, since Ruby was sniffing her way around the store. Turns out he grew up with them. Too make a long story, short...this place is a must see if your into old signs, automobilia and nostalgia. Mike's a great guy to talk to and the store is a time capsule. Places and people like this is what I love about being on the road.
The soda fountain, not in use anymore but still there.
The jukebox still works and spins records.
The TV even works. It was playing the Andy Griffith Show. How appropriate.
The ticket window for the bus stop.