“Dark and silent late last night, I think I might have heard the highway calling, geese in flight and dogs that bite, and signs that might be omens say I’m going, going I’m gone to Carolina in my mind” – James Taylor
Miles traveled: 0.0
Today is day 50 of my road trip and also my last day and night in Nashville….aaand also the last day before I make the trek back to Charleston. So it’s a little bittersweet for sure – I’m excited to get back to Charleston (altho only for a few days because I will be rafting the Grand Canyon with my Dad for 14 adventurous days – no, sorry, there will be no blog for that one!), but bummed to be getting off the road and wrapping up one of the best trips and experiences of my life. But, I still had all day today in what is now one of my favorite cities. So let’s get to it.
I’m a big fan of the Man in Black, the legendary Johnny Cash. Although the man had his issues, he created some of the best music there is and just did great things for country music and rock & roll. And behold, there happens to be a museum dedicated solely to the Man in Black who Walked the Line down in Folsom Prison on his way goin’ to Jackson (see what I did there). It’s a small museum, but it packs a punch housing the world’s largest collection of Cash ‘stuff’. Really cool place and a must do for Johnny Cash fans.
After getting my fill of Mr. Cash, I walked around Sobo, walked along the Riverbank park along the Cumberland River where you can get a great view of the bridges and LP Field (home of the not so stellar Tennessee Titans and home to the freakin awesome musical madness a la CMA Fest). It was a hot one today, so I stopped by a little local joint to get a smoothie before I sweated to death. Yes, I know what you are thinking. I haven’t sweated recently. I’m here to say, I brought it back in style today. The sweating that is. I wandered back to the Jeep, found some pretty amazing boots along the way, and decided to make a little detour to do a drive by of one of the famous, small music venues in Nashville called the Bluebird Café. This is a tiny spot that is well known for hosting “in the round” shows featuring the many talented songwriters of Nashville with their guitars, telling stories of their songs and singing them for the small audience. I was going to try to catch a show while I was hear but they sell out quickly since it’s a tiny ole place. Still fun to do a drive by. Wow. All that for a drive by. Please excuse my rambling.
Another institution in the great city of Nashville has nothing to do with music. But is has everything to do with good southern fried chicken with a little (or a lot) kick. They call it Hot Chicken folks. Hot. Chicken. And, yes, it is hot. To embrace my Nashville Hot Chicken, I went to Hattie Bs, ordered up some Medium spice chicken – after all I have a 9 hour drive tomorrow – sweet tea, baked beans, and crinkle fries. It was excellent and served in it’s traditional glory, on some bread that’s soaking up the hot spices, with a couple of pickles, and two sides. Hattie Bs knows their Hot Chicken!
On my way to the evening finale, I made a quick and unplanned stop at a little antique store. Some cool items to parooze, and I happened upon a little camera that I don’t already posses and a few $2 LPs that were in pretty decent shape! I stopped over at my hotel to change, and then made my way back to Opryland.
Typically the Opry only broadcasts on Tuesdays, Fridays, and Saturdays. However, they do have special tapings and events on other days from time to time. Tonight was one of those times, and it was simply a line-up that couldn’t be passed up. Ever! They were actually recording the live performance for a movie to be released at the end of the year. So there you have it, I am an actress. Officially. I really might be on the film because I was sitting in the front row in the balcony area. So coming soon to a theater near you. Before the show really got going, they had to do several audience takes – so like a bunch of trained animals, we clapped at different levels of enthusiasm per the direction of the director. It was pretty hilarious. The line-up for tonight was as follows:
Darius Rucker (hometown: Charleston, SC – word – and the only one of two artists to get a very lengthy standing ovation tonight)
The Band Perry
It was one killer show and possibly the best way to close out my time in Nashville and my last night on the road. It was so damn good!
Tomorrow’s my last drive on the road as I head back to Charleston.
Until next time…