Rooster and I traveled to the small city of Greenburg to attend the Tenderloin Throw-down but it didn’t go down. We traveled to Edinburgh to find the elusive sandwich. #tenderlain #Greenburg #Edinburgh Dinner #road construction
The Tenderloin Throw-down
I conducted a search online for exciting adventure destinations, and I discovered the sixth annual Tenderloin Throwdown was about to take place on Main Street in Greensburg, Indiana. There were rumors Nick’s Kitchen was going to have an entry. Since rooster and I traveled to Huntington to write a blog about the restaurant, we wanted to go to the Throwdown to see how they stood up to other eateries with tenderloin specials. If this quirky Indiana town was having a tenderloin cooking contest, we wanted a front-row seat. We traveled to Greenburg and discovered the Tenderloin Throw-down didn’t go down.
The famous Greenburg, Indiana courthouse tree
The one fact every Hoosier knows about Greensburg is they are famous for the tree growing out of the courthouse tower. The foliage first made its appearance back in the early 1870s. The citizens of the town thought it was a little odd but made a group decision to ignore the unusual growth in hopes it would go away. In 1888 they hired a steeplejack to go up to the courthouse tower and trim the tree.
The citizens of the city had no desire to get rid of the oddity at this point in time. They had grown accustomed to seeing it hang out above their heads. They thought it might be a good idea to get rid of some of the branches before the tree got too heavy. The steeplejack climbed the 110 feet to discover there were now two Tooth Aspen Trees growing on the tower.
They left it alone with the thought it was best to allow nature to take care of itself. To this day, it is a mystery how the seeds got on the roof. It is a little unusual to drive down the streets of the small town and see the tree hanging out in the courthouse tower like it was given a key to the city.
I’ll be the first person to admit the weather wasn’t the greatest, but we weren’t assaulted by a downpour either. The skies were cloudy, and the radar showed rain moving across the state. Rooster and I decided to leave the motorcycle at home.
Road construction and corn
We climbed into the Sunshine Mobile and started the two-hour drive, which would take us to Greenburg. The depressing part of the journey was seeing all the empty fields, which should have crops growing like the hair on a giant’s head by now. The saying around here goes knee-high by the Fourth of July, which could be changed to ankle-high this year. The only thing growing knee-high these days are the weeds standing in the unplowed fields. We made it through the road construction without any delays as we rounded Indianapolis.
Rooster and I arrived in Greensburg at 11 A.M. We knew we were in the right place when we spotted the famous tree in the courthouse tower. We traveled through town until we got to the square. It was a surprise to find the place nearly deserted. There was a booth signing up bicycle riders for some sort of event, but booths of tenderloin contestants couldn’t be found.
Rooster started a search on his phone to determine if we were in the right place. I climbed out of the Sunshine Mobile to search the square for evidence a Tenderloin Throwdown was about to take place. After a thorough investigation, I located an interesting bull sculpture in front of the courthouse. I finally spotted a small sign, which stated the Throwdown was canceled due to inclement weather.
The Tenderloin throw-down didn’t go down
The cancelation of the Tenderloin Throw-down brought our adventure plans crashing down around our heads. It would be a wasted trip if we didn’t find a restaurant that cooked a decent pork tenderloin somewhere in southern Indiana. We were cruising down the Interstate when I remembered the new guy at work mentioned eating at the Edinburgh Diner.
Coming up with an alternative plan
Jake said the tenderloin was so big it covered his plate. I suggested since we were denied the satisfaction of eating a tenderloin in Greensburg, we might as well sample one in Edinburgh. Rooster plugged 413 S. Eisenhower Dr. into the GPS on his phone. The small town of Edinburgh has a population of about four thousand. I know little about the place except it sets in Bartholomew, Johnson, and Shelby counties, there is a big outlet mall on the freeway, and Camp Atterbury is nearby.
The town was named in honor of Edinburgh, Scotland. I figure the first inhabitants were of Scottish descent. We turned off the interstate, and the GPS on the phone started giving us odd directions. Rooster’s phone couldn’t recognize our current location but wanted to tell us how to arrive at our destination from home. I pulled out my cellphone and got the same result. I wondered if we would be able to find the diner.
The Edinburgh Diner
One look at the parking lot told us we’d stumbled onto the right place. There wasn’t a parking spot open for us to pull into. Luckily, our Chevy Spark will squeeze into a spot where a normal car would never be able to fit. We entered the diner, and the hostess asked if we came for the tenderloin. We started to ask her how she knew until we looked at what the other customers were eating.
The breaded pork tenderloins were so massive they fell over the edges of the white plates reaching the tabletops. The tiny bun looked like a brown brimless hat decorated with sesame seeds gracing an oversized man’s head. Rooster and I ordered one to share. The waitress asked if we wanted an extra bun. From the looks of things, she could have brought us six, and we still would have tenderloin to spare.
It didn’t take long for her to sit our meal in front of us on the table. Rooster and I were both amazed at the size of the thing. It was the largest tenderloin we ever set eyes on, but would it pass the taste test? We found it to be flavorful and crisp. The meat inside the coating was a little dry for my taste. The fries served with the giant tenderloin were crisp on the outside and moist on the inside. They were cooked the way I like them. The meal was so big. Rooster and I didn’t finish the entire sandwich.
The trip home
The drive home was plagued with traffic congestion. The freeway narrows from four lanes to one due to construction. We managed to take an off-ramp before we were in the back up that was taking an hour to get through. The congested surface streets on the outskirts of Indianapolis made it hard to travel. Drivers attempting to avoid the construction zone navigated the narrow streets.
Life here in Indiana is good. We have major traffic headaches due to construction, but a valiant attempt is underway to fix the roads and make travel better in the future. The predicted rain never fell from the sky. A break in the weather will mean we can mow our yards and ignore the flash flood warnings.
The canceled Tenderloin throw-down led to a great adventure
The Tenderloin Throw-down was canceled, but we had a pleasant visited at the Edinburgh Diner instead. We discovered the largest tenderloin we’d ever seen. It was as big as the plate it was served on. The eatery made our adventure a wonderful experience. Sometimes on an adventure, you must use your head. You shouldn’t settle on calling it a day and heading home because things aren’t going the way you planned. Indeed, the best adventure might be down the road a couple of miles, so keep on driving.
Who is molly Shea?
Molly Shea is an accomplished fictional short story writer from Indiana, who writes short stories and novels about a fictional town called Tecumseh. To read more of her short stories and adventures click here.
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