Saturday, February 6, 2010

Taking Friends to Tennessee

The weekend after Labor Day, we took our good friends Tim and Nicole Callahan on their first trip to Tennessee.

After landing at Nashville Airport on Thursday evening, we headed to dinnner at Cabana in Hillsborough Village. Nicole's ear was stopped up, so we tried an old-timey remedy at the restaurant. Unfortunately for Nicole, it didn't help much. Fortunately for us, we got this awesome picture.

Rachel's sister, Heather, and friends, Mandy Ellithorpe Graves (pictured here with Rachel and Heather) and Jennifer Hutson met us for dinner. Cabana is one of my favorite restaurants in Nashville. The food is really good, and it has a really cool atmosphere. The Manager, bartenders and wait staff have always treated us very well, too.

After dinner, Mandy and Heather headed home, as they both had to work on Friday. Jennifer was our tour guide, as we took Tim and Nicole "Honkeytonking" on 2nd Avenue in Nashville. I always enjoy the music at the Honkeytonks. It ranges from the old school country at Roberts to more progressive country at Tootsies. One of the highlights of this trip was one of the musicians playing the "Guit-Fiddle". He ended "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" by playing the guitar up to his ear like a fiddle. It was quite impressive.

We gave Tim and Nicole the 2nd Avenue Guitar Musician Quiz. After they scored a poor 6 or 7 out of 12, we took their picture (please note that true southerners will typically score 10 or higher; Yankee immigrants typically score 8 or higher).

They had several specials running that Thursday Night on 2nd Avenue. I'm pretty sure you have to have a double first name to qualify for this special (Jim Bob, Ima Jean, etc).

Friday morning, we woke up and were entertained by Toby the Wonderdog. This past summer, the Hargises learned that Toby enjoys swimming. Mrs. Hargis realized that rather than walking Toby in the heat, she could sit in the shade and throw a ball into the pool to help him get his exercise.

We took the indirect route to Knoxville, so we could take Tim and Nicole to the Jack Daniels Distillery in Lynchburg, TN. Lynchburg is in a dry county (ironic, isn't it) in southeastern Tennessee, between Nashville and Chattanooga. As evidenced by the GPS in the car, there is not much around Lynchburg. In fact, there aren't even any side rodes off of most of Lynchburg Highway between Tullahoma and Lynchburg (the fact that I use Tullahoma as a point of reference describes just how remote Lynchburg is).

Rachel with Jack Daniels

Here is our group taking our "free shot of Jack Daniels on the rocks". Our tour guide, Betty, who coined this photo-op phrase, was fantastic. She had worked at the distillery for some years and was quite the character. One of the members of our tour group asked her how long she had been there. She responed, "Since about 10 AM." She was very knowledgeable and thoroughly entertaining.

The tour concluded in the gift shop, where we got free lemonade (dry county = no samples).

Friday night, Rachel and I had a dinner at the University. Mark Clark took Tim and Nicole out to dinner and then down to Calhoun's on the River (thanks Mark). After our dinner, Rachel and I picked up Tim and Nicole at Calhoun's and drove out to my cousin's to spend the evening with him and his wife. Hanging with Laddy and Amy is always a great time because you can't help but have a good laugh.

On Saturday morning, we woke up and had breakfast at Mom and Dad's. Mom had biscuits and preserves, which Tim rather enjoyed. After breakfast, we posed for this picture and then headed to campus to tailgate. Although you can't tell from this picture, Tim was going to the University of Tennessee Football Game.

Tim and Nicole with Knoxville in the background.

Tito and Emerson Wray

The Jumbotron

A view of Neyland Stadium from The Hill as The Pride of the Southland arrives.

After a quick trip to the UT Bookstore, Tim donned more appropriate orange apparel for the football game.

Nicole shot this picture of the Vols running through "The T". This is where my discussion of the game ends, as Crompton Version 2008 showed up, completing more passes to the Bruins than to the Vols.

Tim and Nicole, thanks for joining us on a trip to Knoxville. It is our hope that we were able to return a small bit of the hospitality that you have shown us since we arrived in Philadlephia.

Snow - Go Away

This year, Philadelphia has received over 70 inches of snow - A new record. Two weeks ago, we received 16 inches at our house over the weekend. Then, on the following Wednesday, we received 19 inches more. Below are a couple of videos from the event. The first, is the view out our front door, as the snow is still coming down. The second video is me working my way over to broom off the satellite dish. Based off the railing, which I brushed off in this video, we got about 4-5 more inches of snow after this video.

Rachel has promised that if we get one more big snow this year, she is moving back to Tennessee, with or without me, until spring arrives.



Special thanks to Laddy and Amy, who bought us this butt-kickin' new video camera for Christmas. Thanks guys!!!