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Good day! As you already know, life is about the moment we create and remember. Sometimes, i don’t realize the value of a moment until it comes to the past, until it  becomes a memory that I wish I could experience again. This trip drives, ignites me to wanna write more aside from a brief story of it i shared on my Facebook Page.

𝓣𝓱𝓮 𝔀𝓪𝔂 𝓘 𝓮𝔁𝓹𝓮𝓻𝓲𝓮𝓷𝓬𝓮 𝓲𝓽.

You have your own story. For which, let’s be reminded, you are the goals and dreams you have. You are with the good and bad inside of you that you strive to fight with and do the right thing. You are who you wanna be loyal to the ones that means a lot to you. You are the people you meet. You are the taste that you indulge in. You are how you carry your emotions through. You are how you love the beaches or the mountains. You are the books that you read, the conversations you engage in, the kind of music you listen to. 

Over the years I am getting to know myself better now than I have in years, my memory is a precious thing that belongs entirely to me. I put myself in a shell, afraid to open up, been torn down by some parts of life. Writing has been my escape, my outlet. 

I try to ask about one piece of wisdom to live by whenever I get the chance to talk to an older person. I know I could not always be so forward like that. If that awkward feeling hits me, from talking and watching the person, I try to figure it out myself. It always goes to not stop learning and keep going. In life, know that God is our Rock.

So, as my title says, I wanna call this trip a mind- stretching experience. I learned a lot.

It started with a list of errands in the morning for us on the day of the trip. I went to work, unfortunately two friends got a flat tire on the interstate on their way to our meeting area. Bravo for them to have survived that tough moment. We took off one hour late at the agreed  time, It’s all okay it happens. That’s about dealing with actual travel. I don’t wanna pretend that these situations don’t exist. I wanted to write more about travel the way I experienced it.

At the distillery place, one forgot her tour ticket in the car, the other one forgot her phone and me with few requests for a quick stop to restrooms along the way. Thankful to hubby for that wonderful drive and for being a rescuer for those. As for him, there’s no doubt, he loves travelling as friendship happens quickly on the road. Yep, between these elements, i am stepping into the true experience of travel which makes it more colorful.

Sometimes, it was smooth flowing. Other times, it was rocky but it was always powerful. Being on travel is therapeutic for me. Believe me, I had not expected the real meaning of homesickness until last year. That was tough but it gets going. I can say it’s a graceful struggle. So going out somewhere really is therapy. Small but remarkable things like seeing  and watching my breath on cold. I mean freezing cold, days like these surely to say is adaptable and joyful. I am like a kid. I have never seen my breath until I came here.

So, i am slowly overcoming and it’s getting better. I know that I have an entire life that I can’t even see yet.

𝓣𝓱𝓮 𝓔𝓷𝓽𝓻𝓪𝓷𝓬𝓮 – 𝓦𝓮𝓵𝓬𝓸𝓶𝓮 𝓒𝓮𝓷𝓽𝓮𝓻

Looking around at people who were standing at the Welcome Center, you can tell there is so much curiosity and interest in them. The place is so inviting, a blend of the old and the modern, which makes it so elegant.

While taking the tour of the distillery, we felt happy enough to have a very knowledgeable local tour guide who had been working there for years. She had an answer for all of the questions from the group.

Jack at the Welcome Center.

“Why are all the trees around Lynchburg and the distillery so black?”

This question stood out in my mind while looking around, at the same time whispered it to hubby which he proceeded to ask. “Why are all the trees around Lynchburg and the distillery so black?” One of the things that became very noticeable are blackened bark of all the trees in and around town. It seemed bizarre and strange at the same time feeling that cool breeze around. First thing I thought was because of the smoke from the process. A part of that was true though, she told us that over time, yeast mold from the brewing and distilling process accumulates on the trees. So it means, it’s not just plain smoke. It’s the microorganisms from the molds.

Walking around downtown Lynchburg was fun.

There are three types of grain used to make Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey – corn , rye and malted barley for milling and mashing.

𝓣𝓱𝓮 𝓒𝓪𝓿𝓮 𝓢𝓹𝓻𝓲𝓷𝓰

One thing caught my eyes and attention again while approaching the statue. That cave, at first I thought it’s man-made for added attraction to the area. Then she said that the water from cave spring is being used in the process, pure iron-free water, never exposed to any pollutants of any kind. She offered and invited us to taste and drink the water right in there if we want. I would love to but the tour is proceeding and we have to keep going as timed.

The grain is mixed with water taken from that Cave Spring after being ground. That’s when I felt the chills after her spontaneous spill about Mr. Jack Daniel’s connection to No.7, just like my attachment to that number. I also have a big fascination about caves, how and why it was formed millions of years ago is just amazing. I worked for more than a decade in the famous Underground River in Palawan, Philippines declared as the The New Seven Wonders of Nature.

The Cave Spring is the reason why Mr. Jack established his distillery right here, the guide said.

It took a minute to let it all sink in, but it didn’t go down in a slow, deep-inhale kind of way. Staying there for the whole tour, getting my curiosity weighing high. Everything here is a surprise to me but that was a plus of surprise,  revealing in me what makes this town so special. A cool place indeed. Surely, when hearts are touched, smiles are shared, eyes are opened.

Statue of Jack Daniel in front of the Cave Spring.

 

It is a very informative tour, was never a dull moment. You can only continue to breathe and blink not to miss the facts and info being spoken to. But we missed some by taking pictures as she continues to deliver.

Missing my tour guiding  life. I felt all kinds of flashbacks  as a big part of my life influences have come from it. Am not just talking about good influences but influences nonetheless. Those times when three to five languages were being spoken inside the car. To understand, respect and meet great people and the unpredictable day-to-day of it all and to everyday trying to be always armed with that sense of OKness and prayers.

Just in case, you were wondering again of the color of the buildings and trees surrounding the area. It came from the yeast mold, microorganisms  coming from stages of the process.

Everyone on staff seemed to take great pride in being part of the institution, which was originally raised in 1870. They all were connected to the family up to the youngest generation. In fact, if  you wanna ask, the Tour Guide says the best question is… “Who are you not keen or related to?, everyone smiled with admiration. Living and working to demonstrate continuously an uncommon dedication to their work, truly a labor of love. Always staying true to the founder’s guiding words, ” Everyday we make it, we’ll make it the best we can.”

Charcoal from sugar maple wood.

𝓣𝓱𝓮 𝓜𝓮𝓵𝓵𝓸𝔀𝓲𝓷𝓰 𝓟𝓻𝓸𝓬𝓮𝓼𝓼

The young whiskey is mellowed, drop by drop, through 10 feet of crushed sugar maple charcoal before it’s barreled inside the vats. The smooth, mellow spirit is then mixed with spring water to lower the proof and poured into new, charred white oak barrels.

The barrels are placed in a barrel house where the whiskey matures.

These are the newly arrived barrels. The smell of the oak tree is still strong.

These stories felt real for the first time and weren’t so overwhelming but remarkable. Here comes the tasting portion, the guide gave us an overview of each type and flavor of whiskey. I wanna taste it with my mind, thinking what goes on behind the scene is just all worthy of it. That tipsy feeling is worth every barrel I’ll see.

𝓣𝓱𝓮 𝓣𝓪𝓼𝓽𝓲𝓷𝓰

The tasting just fell into place for my age, it felt fitting. I believe it’s a true gift for my throat. My favorite is the honey flavor.

And so, that evening turned into one of those golden travel experiences. Jack Daniel is one of those who is too good to believe, in face, l liked it enough. I have a deeper appreciation for the process. He has such a passion for life. I was immensely moved.

From that tipsy feeling, our final stop was the buffet dinner.

My experience of it is a different kind of affirmation. I can’t recommend it highly enough.

Thanks for reading.

Ritztakeoffs.com

I am forever be humbled and grateful for my experiences in life, the best and even the worst, it's teaching me even more. I believe that i have the obligation to stay healthy and let the universe take care of it.

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13 Comments

  1. What a cool tour! Who knew there was so much that went into JD production… and the facility is gorgeous. I’m saving & pinning your blog for my next Tenn. trip!

  2. Wow, what a wonderful experience! Even though I don’t drink, I find visiting breweries and distilleries so much fun and really fascinating! My dad is a huge Jack Daniels fan so he’d be super envious of this experience! Thanks for sharing it with us!

  3. Woah! That sounds so cool… JD is my favourite and I loved knowing about what goes behind making it. I would love to visit this place someday. Thanks for sharing!

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