After more than a little hiatus

Boy do I need to catch up! Its hard to feel too bad that I’ve been so bad at blogging because I’ve been adventuring! At the same time it means there is so much to tell!

I've been real busy as you can tell

Picking up where I left off…

Sunday morning I woke up while Rachel was getting set to go on a run with Oscar. I dragged myself to the empty bed in the boys dorm and the rest of us lazed about while those two crazies went running all around Nashville, sheesh. Once they made it back we walked just a few minutes away to grab breakfast/lunch, some very interesting decisions were made. I decided to have tortellini, it just sounded so good. Brian decided to offset my carbo-loading with a Naked juice and parfait haha. Rachel and Danny both committed to sandwiches and beers, the day had truly begun.

From the hostel Rach, Brian, and I set off to do some exploring. We tried to go to the Grand Ole Opry Museum only to learn it was closed until further notice following the flash floods that occurred in May. We saw the gift shop at least? The whole thing was set up in a mall, wasn’t very appealing or country to begin with.

From there we were going to head back towards the state building/downtown but as per usual we got a little sidetracked. There was an exit sign for Andrew Jackson’s house called The Hermitage so we figured we’d pop in. Well, Mr. Exit-Sign-That-Doesn’t-Tell-You-What-It-Is-For-Is-Actually-Five-Million-Miles-Away, you win again.

That didn’t keep us from getting more sidetracked though. We saw this place and had to get a closer look:

Hmmm what's this place?

Just dying to know what it was we headed towards the modern looking back door where we met a very friendly security guard. He told us this use to be a residence, three stories and all, but now it was used as the offices for the Historical Society or some such. After thanking him for the info, and a few handshakes we made our way around the exterior, “I call the floor with the porch!” With all the floors divided between us, we saw a barred entrance to the basement right next to the dumpster, “that’s where Danny and Oscar can stay haha.” Our imaginations exhausted we continued our original quest to The Hermitage.

Now, before we began this side quest of the initial quest, we had already read that it was rather pricey to tour the house, our hope was to be able to drive up and check it out. Ironically we were able (no fences stood in our way at least) to drive around quite a bit of the property, see and adjacent house, graveyard, etc. but we never got to see the main house! Oh well, the cows were pretty exciting too.

We actually made our way back into down, drove along Gay St. and got a feel for the Nashville we’d only seen at night. Just down the hill from the impressive state building we found the Farmer’s Market which had three HUGE halls. The first was gardening things and produce, the next was an enclosed food court with several shops and meats, lastly was a flea market. Open aired avenues fanned out in both directions and even though we arrived towards closing there was still plenty to see, like this:

Giant gourds! Not for the eating Brian

Blue pumpkins!! With lumps!!

Pumpkin towers

Some of many pig parts for sale

Brian and I got a bag of delicious grape tomatoes and ate ourselves silly! He made a new Jamaican friend and I learned about a new place I want to travel to. We met up with Rachel who had been across the street checking out the rather overwhelming walking timeline of Tennessee’s history, a lot of note can happen in a few hundred years.

I don’t remember how it came up be we began to patiently explain to Brian the dating guidelines we have come up with along the way, i.e. No trucks, No gingers, No last names that are first names, and they only get sillier from there. Note: the key use of the word “guidelines” because like everyone else we love changing our minds and making exceptions 😉 to all this Brian had the best response yet: “I don’t think there is a type of girl I wouldn’t date!” Now we still aren’t sure what he meant to say but that’s what came out haha I still haven’t decided whether it should give ladies hope or traumatize them.

Our last night in Nashville with our new friends! The next day held lots of driving for us but we had a ball nonetheless. Somehow (as always) we literally stumbled upon a brewpub with a 2 for 1 beer special for dinner. Despite the huge increase in volume as the place filled up, Oscar and Brian provided top-notch entertainment. We did have to explain to Oscar that the “Milwaukie beer” he just ordered was the same Pabst Blue Ribbon we had before we left the hostel, go figure! After we were fed and full we caught a cab downtown for some more live music and dancing! The highlight of the night was definitely when the band broke into a rendition of “We Are The Champions” and all of us belted it out on the dance floor.

Our best attempt at a group photo haha

The next morning gave us a moment to pause, it’d been so much fun hanging out together! I think we were also all very excited for the next part of our trips it was hard to dwell on it too much. We said farewell to Brian who took off on his bike for North Carolina, Danny and Oscar had another night in town and just a few days later we would reunite in New Orleans! At the same hostel again no less. With a pit stop for fuel for Velma and ourselves, Rach and I hit the road! This drive took us on all new highways but through some new territory. We stopped in Mississippi and had Chick-Fil-A for the first time ever! It was a very impressive chicken sandwich.

Late that evening (after a few missed highways and “rerouting” by our phones) we made it to my cousins’ in Long Beach, Mississippi. Jimmy and Becky stayed up to welcome us and we all hit the hay soon after happy to be back in the deep South.

With love from the road,

Cara

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