Thank you Sonny & Becky: Innkeeper/Host/Owners of the Maplehurst Inn www.maplehurstinnbedandbreakfast.com
My wife and I and our just purchased Ford F-550 were driving home to Florida. As we reached the top of a steep Mountain stretch 15 miles from the Kentucky / Tennessee border we lost power & coasted to a stop just beyond a deep ravine against the mountain side.(We'd moments earlier called a Bed & Breakfast we determined would be another 1.5 hours drive, The Maplehurst Inn.) We called and AAA sent a great tow truck driver who said the truck would need repairs and it was late Saturday night so he suggested we find a place to stay. We decided to tow to Knoxville about 85 miles south and we started down the highway toward Tennessee. During the ride I called Sonny four times. He was always patient and helpful putting us at ease. He said he would be there and the room would be waiting. He gave us directions and with a 20’ ft tow bed with F-550 on top we eventually made it to the Inn around 11pm.
To our amazement there were thousands of people walking the streets. Every parking spot in town was taken. The lot next door was packed and throngs of people congested the road. Sonny and his dear wife Becky stared at us in disbelief. I asked where I might park the pick-up and he laughed and shook his head “that is no pick-up”. It seems that we had chosen a Bed & Breakfast two blocks from the University of Tennessee Football Stadium on game night and arrived the moment 104,000 people were leaving the stadium after winning!
Sonny jumped in his car and went in search of a nearby parking spot. My wife in the mean time took her shattered nerves into the Inn. She never lost her cool during this entire ordeal; not when we lost power at 70 miles an hour, not when I stopped against the rock Wall that all night long sent shards and pebbles down on us, not when I stood out on the darkened highway directing 18 wheelers away from the legs of our tow truck driver as he tried to get us going, and not even when we ignored her reiterated directions from Sonny,” DO NOT get on I 40 East, DO NOT get on I 40 West…Exit on Henley Street” when we passed Henley Street and got on I 40.
Sonny found a spot, the driver dropped the truck and Sonny drove me back to the Maplehurst Inn and my wife.
Sonny got on the phone, 11:20pm and called restaurants around he found one open, Calhoun’s on The Volunteer Landing. We ate and walked back to the Inn.
Our room was a cool haven of peace called the Rose room. It was wonderful.
The next day, and for the following five days, as the truck was repaired, Sonny and Becky became like family to us.
• He let me use his Car
• He offered his cell phone when ours died.
• He found a Dealer that was willing to work on the vehicle
• He took us to see beautiful Mountain Top Views and Lakefronts to take our mind off our worries
• He and Becky took us home for supper
• Sonny and Becky took us on a tour of Gatlinburg and on to the Smoky Mountains. (Unbelievable Beauty and Majesty)
• Sonny and Becky took us to Downtown Knoxville for an evening of local cultural discovery.
• Sonny took us to an Egyptian restaurant that only the locals know about. If you stay in Knoxville…Go To Mo’s King Tut Grill. It is worth the trip!
• Sonny took us to the University of Tennessee Stadium, The Norris Dam (WOW what a place) and a historic Grist mill.
• They drove us through Old City and we saw homes that had been restored to their original Beauty.
• They took us on an evening tour of the historic cemeteries in the city.
• And when the Truck was repaired he drove us to the Ford dealership and gave the repair his approval.
It was a week like no other in our lives. We threw a dart at a map for a casual one night stay and ended up making a family like friendship that we will to keep precious for all our days.
Thank you Sonny and