An interesting morning i had trying to get to the airport – left the hostel to catch bus to train station and then caught amtrak to BWI airport stop, where a shuttle took us to the terminal. Flight was uneventful as usual but Southwest has become my favourite airline. Landed ion Nashville to blue skies and warm sunny weather and caught the airport shuttle to a nearby hotel and walked up to the hostel. I had forgotten to write down details but luckily my memory kicked in and i found it without a hassle. My first impression was a good one – everyone there was really friendly and i got a dorm room with a double bed woot!
That night Hope took a bunch of us down to the Station End and we went to see an apparant famous bluegrass band called the Infamous Stringdusters. They were awesome and i had a really good evening, and now a new convert of Bluegrass. The guys in the band were some of the best musicians i have ever seen and the speed at which they played their instruments was mind blowing. We also had front row seats which was cool and the bar is a funky little place with cheap beer and pizza and great music – well what more do you need in Nashville.
Sunday i hung out with Hope and we watched movies and basically chilled out. On Monday Hope and I drove to the area near Vanderbily university and stopped at the Parthenon, apparantly Nashville is known as the Athens of the South. It was a cool thing to see and something very unexpected. We wandered around the area and checked out a funky little book store and then went licence plate hunting. In the evening i entertained everyone by showing them clips from Lee Evans, Little Britain and Catherine Tate amongst others along with copious amounts of tea, ben and jerrys and cigarettes.
On tuesday i walked down to the downtown area with a couple of guys and went into the Tennessee State museum which had free exhibits which showed when the state started and a progression of the people who lived there, through to the civil war. It was a cool little museum and very informative. Wandered up to the State Capital and then down to the downtown area to 2nd Ave and Broadway which are full with bars, restaurants and shops selling everything from Jack D memorablia to cowboy boots. It a very funky little area and sums up the atmosphere of Nashville to a tee. Really the place is all about the music and the ampunt of people i met who had sold up everything and moved here to become a serious musician, was staggering. The place has an awesome vibe and i totally urge anyone coming to the US to check it out, you wont be disappointed and you get to experience new music which is always an eye opener.
In the evening Hope and I and by dorm buddy Fiona and Mel and Glynn went back to the Station End to check out another bluegrass band. Again another awesome band and we had a really good time. The four of us decided to rent a car and drive to Lynchburg tomorrow. Glynn and I are the only ones with driving licenses and over 25 but the potential problem lies with the fact that we dont have a credit card – but the other two do.
As it turns out we were worried for nothing and got a car with no hassle. We paid extra for sat nav knowing that it would be a big help and early wedsnesday morning we took the car back to the hostel and had our pancake breakfast. Hope was given the day off to come with us and we set off just before midday – i am so excited i am on my way to see Jack’s distillery – a place i have wanted to go to for a long long time. It took us about an hour and a half to get there and Glynn was happy doing the driving – and did an awesome job:) I stood outside the distillery, which weirdly looks exactly like i imagined it to look like and we headed in for our free tour. The bad part is that Lynchburg is in a dry county and so we cannot sample the whiskey but we were allowed a good sniff or two in the vats!!! The tour was excellent and i learnt about the entire process of making my beloved Jack. After the tour and me lusting after Jack’s car – see below we headed into the town – well i say town but it only has a population of less than 400 so blink and you may well miss it. The town square was a quaint little place with almost every shop selling jack merchandise. We had lunch in a cute little cafe and then it started to snow quite heavily so we decided to head back. Fair play to Glynn for driving in the conditions he did as they were awful and i dont think i would have done as well. We dropped Hope back at the hostel then went to the Opry Mills area and into a huge mall. Found another Dave and Busters and had dinner there and then had a go on Daytona which i havent played in several years. We left D&B and the mall was shut so had to walk outside in snow and rain, not 100% sure where we parked the car. The security took pity on us and gave us a life to our car which was a lot further away than we realised so very thankful. It was very nice of them, pure southern hospitality. And that ended my time in Nashville which is an awesome place. I would definatelycome back here to experience more of the nightlife and gain more appreciation of the music.