Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Welcome – Plus a Drive and Dinner

Moving along… Our next visitors/houseguests were Laurie’s sister Bonnie and her husband Bill.  They flew into Nashville from St. Louis (via Chicago) and then rented a car to drive to our home in the Knoxville area.  Their flight home to St. Louis was non-stop from Nashville.

To answer this question that you may be thinking…  Why didn’t they just fly directly to Knoxville or alternatively fly through Chicago or some other city to Knoxville?  To begin with there are no direct flights from Knoxville and secondly Knoxville is one of the most expensive cities in the USA to fly in and out of... Where is Southwest Airlines when you need them?!  

Bonnie and Bill arrived at our house in time for lunch…so we’d put together a ‘light’ spread to tide us over until dinner.  There was 2 different kinds of bread, Amish butter, mayonnaise, mustard, bologna, ham, turkey, salami, Swiss, Havarti and sharp cheddar cheese, Italian sandwich dressing, cucumber and tomato salad, jalapeno slices, 2 types of pickles, pickled beets, Freddie’s sauce and potato chips…

No rest for our weary travelers… Off we went on a drive.  We drove the back roads around Loudon, Blount and Monroe Counties.  Along the way we stopped at this monument.

This historical marker was erected in 1989 by the Tennessee Historical Commission Foundation and the Tennessee Valley Authority. (TVA) It serves to remind us of events dating back into the early 1700s.  The town of Tanasi served as the “Capital of the Cherokee Nation” from 1721 through 1730.  “Tanasi” also is the root origin of what we now know as “Tennessee”.

This view from next to the monument is in the direction of the former town of Tanasi.  Its site is located about 300 yards west of the marker. (The site was flooded when the TVA built their Tellico Dam) 

Tanasi achieved political importance when its civil chief was elected as the first “Emperor of the Cherokee Nation”.  The name of the town was also applied to the river along which it was located. (Now called the Little Tennessee River) Sometime after 1730, Tanasi’s importance was lessened when the Cherokee Capital was moved to “Great Tellico”, which was located close to today’s Tellico Plains Tennessee. 

Of course, I just had to take a picture of the two sisters with the monument and the lake in the background.

What I failed to realize was that just about a mile down the road there is another important monument marking Cherokee history.  Beginning in the late 1740s, the town of Chota reigned as the Capital of the Cherokee Nation for more than 40 years.  We’ll just have to take another drive to view this even more impressive and meaningful historical site… 

After considering their options, Bonnie and Bill decided that they wanted to dine at Thai Bistro.  This restaurant is located in Loudon County Tennessee close to Tellico Village.  The chefs at work here are from Thailand and the restaurant offers Chinese dishes in addition to their homeland’s favorites.

Bill decided to order the Calamari for his appetizer.  It turned out to be a huge plate of food.  The calamari was accompanied by carrots and broccoli all fried tempura style.  I can attest that the calamari was very tender and tasty and Bill also gave me a couple pieces of carrot and broccoli and I was very happy!

Everyone else ordered appetizers so I decided that I’d just order a cup of Brown Rice Soup to try it out while at the same time thinking that I might get a taste of someone’s ‘extras’. 

This soup is made with brown rice seasoned with chicken, carrots, cilantro, scallions and a touch of garlic oil.  I also asked that a little Thai ‘heat’ be added.  It was OK but I wasn’t crazy about this soup.  Even though some spice was added per my request, it was just too bland for my taste.

Bonnie ordered some Spring Rolls as her appetizer.  These spring rolls consisted of deep fried rice paper stuffed with bean thread mixed with cabbage, celery and Thai herbs.  It was served with Thai Bistro’s homemade Sweet and Sour sauce.

Bonnie couldn’t believe how big her appetizer was…but she thought that the spring rolls were very nice indeed.  The best part was that I had to help her out by eating a couple pieces from her plate!  They were good!

Laurie always orders the same appetizer when we dine at Thai Bistro.  This was her luscious order of Crab Rangoon.  These attractive little pastry packages are filled with crab meat, cream cheese and scallions and they’re served with sweet and sour sauce.  Once in a great while she will let me have one of these treats…but not this time.  They were all hers!

Bonnie and I ordered the same dinner, the Pad Thai.  Diners have a choice of adding chicken, pork, beef, tofu or vegetables to the rice noodles that have been stir fried with egg, beansprouts, scallions and peanuts.  We both chose chicken as our protein…

The big difference in our entrees was the level of heat requested.  Five levels are available…with one being the mildest and five being “Thai Hot”.  Bonnie decided that a two was hot enough for her.  I’ve had a five and while I could handle it, I decided that on this occasion I’d tone it down to a four.  Bonnie enjoyed her dinner.  I had a problem in that I’m not crazy about onions per se and beyond the scallions, there was a lot of onion mixed in with the noodles.  The next time I’ll have them left out…

Laurie likes to try something different and she likes curry, so she decided to order the Red Curry in coconut milk with shrimp, carrots, string beans, bell peppers and other vegetables.  She enjoyed her dinner but after all those Crab Rangoon ‘packets’, she couldn’t finish this entrée.  As you’ll find out below, her leftovers didn’t go to waste!

Bill loves seafood so he ordered Thai Bistro’s Andaman Seafood.  This large and impressive offering included stir fried shrimp, squid, scallops, mussels and crab meat with bell pepper, onion and basil leaves in a spicy house sauce. 
Bill really enjoyed his dinner!  However, with everything else we’d eaten, he couldn’t finish it.  So he actually mixed it with Laurie’s Red Curry leftovers and took it home with us.  It served as lunch the next day and he commented that the spicy curry sauce had soaked into the leftover rice and it was a perfect mix of heat and flavors…

Thai Bistro is located at 222 Lakeside Plaza in Loudon Tennessee.  They are open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Sunday.  Phone: 865-657-644o.  Website:

Just click on any of the photos to enlarge them…

Thanks for stopping by for a visit!

Take Care, Big Daddy Dave


  1. The food looks delicious and it looks like you had plenty of it. Good info about the Cherokee.

  2. I love the pic of your set table, friend David. So much to choose from and surely something for everyone:) Being a true keto nut, I just have to comment on the 2 condiments you mentioned: I make my own garlic oil with ghee butter. I also make my own mayo with curry powder. Yum:) Love, cat.

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