Two of us woke around sunrise (one of “us” would not be the 20-something) and walked CTF around Fort Nashboro, the log-cabin outpost park and foundational site of Nashville that lies along the Cumberland River. A lovely morning walk, though Nashville might want to step up and better manage the many overnight dwellers we encountered.
Fun Fact. Once named French Lick, it was the post at which traders came to sell their buckskins. Each buckskin was worth $1 (in its time); and that is how a “Buck” became equivalent to a dollar!
On the way back to the loft, I dropped into an open restaurant to gather breakfast while Tony and CTF headed back: three orders of Biscuits and Gravy, of course, from a little place touting both homemade sausage and homemade gravy. Grits, potatoes, and eggs-your-way were the sides; and with the French Press coffee Tony had prepped at the flat, we were entirely fueled for what would be a busy day.
Before we knew it, time to dash! We had 0900 timed-entry tickets for the Ryman Auditorium, the original home of the Grand Ole Opry and otherwise a mother church for country music and the shaping of the American music scene. An excellent self-guided experience; the short movie that begins the tour a perfect opener. Really, one on the “Do Not Miss” when in Nashville.
Lining the hall outside of the auditorium proper are signed posters from the wide variety of performers.
Another hall has a most fascinating timeline of notable speakers and events that have taken place over the years…
…including three Country Music Hereford Sales! 🐄
Walking back to collect the wagon for our next timed-entry outing, a nod to the, “Grey-Eyed Man of Destiny.”
Someone had a memorable evening.
To the leafy ‘burbs we drove for the LEGO Exhibit at Cheekwood, Nashville’s equivalent, more or less, to D.C.’s Hillwood. Or, for those not familiar with either, a grand country home for a prominent wealthy family. Cheekwood’s gardens and trails are quite spectacular; if I lived in Nashville I would certainly have an annual pass.
The LEGO Exhibit included more than 30 sculptures, composed of 800,000 bricks (!) scattered around the near-in garden spaces. What absolute fun to follow the trail and admire both the technique and the creations, each of which included information on the number of bricks and the hours required for construction.
32,650 LEGOs, 124 hours
18,100 LEGOs, 66 hours
38,350 LEGOs, 165 hours. I want this one for our garden.
112,450 LEGOs, 389 hours
In the garden surrounding the Visitor Center we counted 20 rabbits! Each required ~1,496 LEGOs and 111 hours
In my research for this getaway I discovered that the largest population of Iraqi-Kurds in the U.S. is in Nashville. They immigrated at first during the Iraqi-Kurd wars of the 1970s, with later waves a result of Saddam Hussein’s regime and then the ongoing Syrian war. There is a “Little Kurdistan” in South Nashville, decidedly off the tourist-beaten path (translation: opportunity for excellent food), so with time before our final timed-entry activity of the day we motored over to collect take-away to enjoy that evening for dinner.
This being a Sunday afternoon, as well as Father’s Day the restaurant we chose was crowded with family groups (who had little need to see a menu). We had purposely eaten just a light snack at Cheekwood in anticipation of this glorious feast, and the aromas were inciting drool-worthy hangries in all of us. (Spoiler: every bite was better than the previous.)
Our dinner safely tucked into the refrigerator back in the loft, it was time for the Frist Museum of Art. Housed in a stunning art deco former post-office (also on the NRHP), we were there for a couple of exhibits of interest, about which I’ll write separately. Or not. I’m a Goldilocks about museums. If they’re too small I tend to feel I’ve “wasted” my time; and if they’re too large I simply make them “just right” by only looking at what interests me. The Frist was “just right” all on its own, the building itself a bonus.
[On my soap box]. Despite the lifting of the mask mandate for vaccinated persons, the Frist was still on timed-entry and still requiring visitors to don masks. #PartyofScience. [Off my soap box.]
This long day was also a scorcher, even for summertime in the South, and with thunderstorms approaching we returned to the loft to chill, watching the eternal queue at the Legendairy Milkshake Bar dwindle to nothing with the first downpours.
Dinner, as mentioned above, so very much satisfied. Cool and tangy Haydari; Sigar Boregi as light as I remember from Brunnenmarkt in Vienna; and a couple of perfectly-grilled Kebab and Sis dishes. Add to the the history, whimsy and art we experienced, and our exemplary day came to a close.