We woke up excited for breakfast: continental breakfast! We each put away multiple waffles, bowls of cereal, coffee, pastries, and probably some other stuff too.
After breakfast, all six of us squished into Nathan's parents' car and headed to Mammoth Cave. We got tickets to an afternoon tour of "The New Entrance" ("New" = 1920, btw). It was only about 10am, so we decided to wander over to the gift shop and look around. Nathan and I bought bought some souvenir pins and patches, and I bought my usual 30 post cards. It's almost a joke now how many post cards I'm carrying around. I think I might be close to 200! I still have post cards from Yellowstone!! I WILL mail them, I promise. If you want one, just send me your address, and I'll send you one.
After the gift shop, we followed some trails around in the woods and had a fun time walking around teasing on each other while Nathan's dad tried to be serious and learn about the cave.
Then it was lunch time, and we went to a Mexican place. We were all really hungry, and I think we might've eaten the equivalent of 2 or 3 BAGS of chips with dip while we waited for our food. Lunch was good, and after we were nice and full, we went back to Mammoth Cave for our New Entrance Tour.
The cave was really neat inside. We entered the cave up on the "surface" (ground level) and walked 250 feet down 14 "vertical shafts" (stairways). The stairs twisted and turned around all kinds of rocks and boulders jutting all different directions. They were made by a guy who installs stairs in submarines. They told us he charged $3,000....per step!
The cave was about 55 degrees, and it stays 55 degrees all year round. Thinking I was going to be cold, I went into the cave with a t-shirt, a long-sleeved bike shirt, a fleece, and a coat. I felt very cozy for the first little while, but then I started to get hot..really hot! Only halfway through the tour, I had taken every layer off except my t-shirt and tied them all around my waist. On some of the narrow passageways, I had to turn sideways because the shirt, fleece, and coat around my waist made my hips too big to fit through!!
It was mostly brown inside the cave, but I thought it was still really pretty. There weren't very many stalactites or stalagmites, until we got to this special place called the Drapery Room. It was full of them and really amazing looking!
I made a little video of our tour. Most of the video didn't come out because it was so dark, but here're some of the good parts!
After the tour, it was time for - what else - more food! We went to a picnic table in the park, and Nathan's parents unpacked snack-topia from their trunk! Nathan's mom made an apple pie, and we also had M&M's, granola bars, crackers, drinks, and a bunch of other stuff. At one point, Nathan's mom put some M&M's in her nose, and I stuffed an entire granola bar in my mouth. (See where I get it from?)
Back to the hotel, Nathan and his family played games while I took a nap. After my nap, I woke up feeling sick. I was dizzy and kept having cold sweats. Yuck!
We all ordered pizza and pasta from Pizza Hut for dinner, and while we were eating, Zach and Carleen showed us pictures from their wedding. (If you remember, they got married on August 14th, the day before we left for our bike trip. Check out our 8-14-10 blog post to see some great pictures from their wedding!) After eating, I felt better. Thank goodness; I'm not sure what had happened to me.
We were all pretty tired, so we went to bed kind-of early. Nathan and I laid in bed and watched TV. We NEVER, EVER do that...mostly because we don't have one at home, but even when we get the chance, we still don't usually do it. Tonight, it was great, and we loved the luxury of laying in bed and watching it. Ahhhhhh, rest days are fabu!