MINI PENNY: A Nashville Adventure

Monday, March 9, 2015

A Nashville Adventure

For starters, I didn't take many photos while in Nashville for a few reasons. One: I had a blast (oops, I always have the tendency to forget to take photos while having fun) and two: the weather was unexpectedly ...grim. Last year at this time, I made the same trip during the same week and it had felt like summer. This year, it was cold, wet, and icy. This in turn left us stranded in Nashville with few ways home to Chicago. But more on that later.

Just like the year prior, I grabbed round trip Megabus tickets from Chicago to Nashville (and just like the year prior, they were cheap. $26 for two round trips!). They were both red eye routes — the first one leaving Chicago on Tuesday night and arriving in Nashville Wednesday morning. The second trip was to leave Nashville that night and drive overnight to Chicago. It was one of my favorite trips last year for the sheer brevity and spontaneity of it. It is a cheap, easy trip and you [theoretically] don't have to mess with hotels. When our bus landed in Nashville last week, I already had an alert that our bus home had been cancelled. But an easy tweet later, and Megabus had already booked us on a Greyhound home that evening. Crisis averted, customer service prevails, all that good stuff. Time to enjoy the day.

I had been in debate between trying Pinewood Social or Biscuit Love for breakfast. The Instagrammer in me chose Pinewood because of it's retro bowling alley, killer neon, and interior aesthetic. It did not disappoint. Breakfast gave us a good chance to unwind and loosely figure out our day, but not before squeezing in two rounds (games?) of bowling. I'll be the first to admit that I'm terrible at bowling, but it was a really good time and I think I may have been getting the hang of it towards the end.

After breakfast, I wanted to head down to 12South. Last year we walked, so I figured that this year... we could walk. Meh. We made it to Third Man Records before deciding to shake the rain and get a Lyft down to Frothy Monkey for coffees and to dry off. The temperatures were steadily dropping and the rain didn't stop all day.

Laughably, I left my umbrella in the first Lyft we took. Emphasis on laughably.

So onto Imogene + Willie, Katy K, White's Mercantile, and a few other stores in 12South. The rain was really kicking our butts and I couldn't find a replacement umbrella for purchase anywhere. I was soaked and while it slowed us down, we didn't stop. We managed to pop into The Flipside for lunch poutine, Local Honey, and UAL before hitting East Nashville. I will say that this is the first time I've stopped in Local Honey and UAL and I'm really looking forward to going back on my next visit!

Okay, so at this point it's around 7pm. Even though I found an umbrella, the damage was done and I was pretty much soaked. We went straight to Barista Parlour for hot cocoa and espresso, before walking (in the rain... still!) to Mas Tacos Por Favor for a fantastic dinner.

Around 8pm we head downtown to visit Gold Club Electric, then decide to end the night at Acme and some other honky tonk hillbilly bar. A friend of mine whom I used to work with at Urban Outfitters had recently moved to Nashville, so he came out for a drink and we caught up on old times. It was fantastic. Our replacement Greyhound bus was to go out of town at 11:45pm and we got ourselves a Lyft that way.

An then the "worst" thing happened (I say "worst" in quotations because it really is not the worst and was just a big punch in the gut after being out in the cold rain all day). All busses out of Nashville were cancelled. Hah! Crap! So I got back on the phone with our original busline and tried to work some things out with not much avail. See, a funny thing happens when you visit another city. Since I live in Chicago and I'm so used to snow and ice, I was totally baffled to see Nashville completely shut down with just a little dusting of snow. We ended up in a hotel room for the night and had to rent a car the next morning to drive back to Chicago. Tennessee and Kentucky were so unprepared for the winter, it took us around ten hours to drive back thanks to the road conditions and closures.

At the end of it all, once we finally got back home Thursday night, it was a pretty good laugh. And despite not getting to see everything I wanted to see this time, I can easily say that I can't wait to visit Nashville again when it's a little warmer!

Have you ever had any unexpected travel delays or have gotten stranded in a strange city? What did you do?

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