Stanly County Airport in Albemarle, NC (KVUJ), chosen because it was (a) on the way, more or less, and (b) able to supply fuel at what now passes for a reasonable price – $5.23/gallon, self-service.
After landing at Stanly County and pumping 49 gallons of 100LL into N631S, we walked over to the terminal and inquired about lunch. The pleasant gentleman at the desk handed us the keys to the "crew car" (a clean and well-maintained van) and directed us to the Log Cabin BBQ Restaurant, where we had a delightful meal. We returned to the airport (stopping to put $10 worth of gas in the crew car...you do put gas in the crew car, don't you?) and got on with the trip. This would be the long leg.
Knowing that there would be some tall country between us and Nashville – and that we'd need to circumnavigate Charlotte – I'd filed from KVUJ northwest to the Barrett Mountain VOR (BZM) then southwest to Sugarloaf (SUG) thence across the mountains to Volunteer (VXV) then to Nashville (BNA) and into our destination, the John C. Tune Airport (KJWN). It's rare for me to get N631S above 8,000 feet but I'd filed for 10,000 this time to ensure some space between us and the hilltops.
On our way, we were step-climbed up to 10,000 feet – first by Charlotte Approach and then by Don Brown's old friends at Atlanta Center. Before we reached BZM we were turned "direct Sugarloaf", and soon thereafter our controller said, "Skylane 631 Sierra, cleared direct to Volunteer." To which I said, "31 Sierra, stand by."
Having crossed the mountains, we still had about two hours of flying left across the relatively flat terrain of east Tennessee. There was a small amount of rain along our flight path and we accepted avoidance vectors from the Memphis Center controller. I'd assumed all along that they wouldn't actually let us fly across the city via BNA to get to our destination airport, and as expected, we received vectors for an arc around the north side that set us up for an easy straight-in to Runway 20 at KJWN. I'd selected that airport for its convenient location and not-too-outrageously priced self-service AvGas ($6.13/gallon). After the 3.5 hour flight from KVUJ, we pumped 38 gallons of the precious stuff and parked N631S. A small consolation: there is no landing fee for light singles, and if you buy fuel and park the airplane yourself, they waive the parking fees.
The FBO had organized a rental auto for us (which they drove out to us at the fuel pump so we didn't need to schlep luggage). We got underway toward our hotel in Nashville and a few days of sightseeing and avoiding country music. And I shall save the trip home to KVKX for another post.