I am probably one of the most loyal country music fans you will ever find. I know the words to a vast majority of the songs, from Garth to Carrie, and after a recent trip to Nashville, can honestly state that I have never felt more at home in an American city than in the Home of Country Music! I mean, live country music being performed at the bars and restaurants all day long, not to mention country tunes blasting from speakers at the bus stops- it is every country music lover’s dream come true. Watching the Country Music Awards last night led me to reminisce about my fantastic experience in “Nashvegas.” (NOTE: The above video clip from the CMAs poking fun at Kanye West made me fall out of my seat laughing… Little Jimmy Dickens deserves an Oscar for that performance!)
Most great American cities boast unique anecdotes about residents and events, both past and present, but these distinctive histories are not always as blatantly obvious as in Nashville. Statues of country greats like Elvis and Dolly Parton line the sidewalks (and if you must know, yes, I did stop to take pictures next to each of them!), cowboy boots can be found in almost every retail store, and museums paying homage to country legends like Johnny and June attract audiences hailing from far and wide.
During my visit to Nashville, I knew that my sadness to return to Atlanta could be assuaged by collecting memorabilia from various venues I frequented during my stay. I could barely close my suitcase because of my new purchases, but I do not regret a single one of them! I could not avoid the tourist shops on Broadway (one of the main streets in downtown Nashville), and wound up buying a fitted custom t-shirt with a subtle graphic featuring the word “Nashville” and a sketch of a guitar at the hip, a few other wearable items and some souvenir gifts for my family and friends.
I am already planning my next trip to Nashville, but in the meantime, I will have to settle for watching my favorite country artists on TV and sporting my Nashville-emblazoned promotional apparel around Atlanta to keep remnants of an unforgettable weekend fresh in my mind!
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