Nashville Rising: The Great Flood of 2010

May 12, 2010 at 9:42 pm (blog, helping, nashville, photo, photoblog, photography, pictures, reflecting, sadness, storm, struggle, suffering, support, tennessee, TN, Uncategorized, weather) (, , , )

AC-we-are-nashville

If you don’t live in Nashville, the recent flooding may be news to you. Unfortunately, it has been overlooked by much of the national media until recently. We are now a week out, and the level of devastation is really starting to sink in.

Many people have completely lost their homes. Much of the downtown area was underwater. The famous Opryland Hotel has had to decline visitors at least through October to get the cleanup process underway after the 10 feet of water that swept through and left a thick layer of mud after the water receeded.

When you drive through the suburbs, you see endless piles of trash and debris that was once the makings of people’s homes. It’s a sobering reminder of just how easy life can change in an instant.

The great thing about this tragic event has been the action of countless volunteers. People are driving in herds to the other side of town to help people they don’t know. It’s an amazing thing to see, and it says a lot about this grand city we call home.

You don’t have to live in Nashville to help. There are plenty of ways to make monetary donations or item donations to those who lost so much by this event.

One thing I love about Nashville is the graphic design community. In a matter of a day or two, multiple graphics were created for tshirts and posters all to benefit the flood victims. Here is a list of some of the items available.  I did not create any of these… just passing it along for the greater good

Click on the image to be taken to the purchasing site:

mattson-poster2

poster

nashville-flood1

ilovenashvilleblue_largeh2010_brown_large

we-are-nashville-bumper-sticker-3x11-5_large

64945_230

65084_230

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Happy Spring!!

March 20, 2008 at 7:07 am (blog, Blogroll, bloom, blooming, flowers, journal, nashville, photo, photoblog, photography, pictures, reflecting, renew, renewal, season, seasons, spring, sunshine, tennessee, TN, weather)

Today is the official first day of the spring season!  I can’t even express how excited I am to see winter move on.  Good riddance!!  I keep trying to remember that without the dark days, the sunshine wouldn’t feel as bright.

Get out and enjoy the sunshine today!

Here are a few spring-ish pictures for your viewing pleasure:

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Experiencing Nashville: Part Three – The Bell Witch

March 18, 2008 at 7:12 pm (Adams, belief, blog, Blogroll, civil war, experiencing nashville, folklore, ghost, ghost story, ghouls, haunting, historic nashville, history, legend, monsters, nashville, photo, photoblog, photography, pictures, questioning, spirit, struggle, suffering, tennessee, TN, witch) (, , , , , , , , , , , , )

For this “Experiencing Nashville” post, I ventured a little farther than I have before. Over the weekend, I took a drive up to Adams, TN. It takes about an hour to get there from here. On a rainy Saturday morning, I loaded into my car and picked up some friends before hitting the road.

I’ve been intrigued by the legend of the Bell Witch for years. I’m such a sucker for anything related to history and the paranormal. I tivo all the Ghost Hunters episodes, and thoroughly freak myself out when no one else is home. I love it.

Here is a little history on the Bell Witch story:

In the early 1800’s, Adams, Tennessee was known as the Red River Settlement. It was an area of vast land with great potential for farming. John Bell and his family moved from North Carolina to the Red River area, aquiring land and developing crops of corn and tobacco. It wasn’t long before strange happenings began to take place on the farm.

It began with a sighting of a strange animal in the cornfield. The family began to hear strange noises, thumbs and scratches on the walls coming from unseen forces. The noises seemed to escalate, then turning into more tangible happenings. Bedsheets were pulled off the bed while the family slept. Pillows were tossed around, and finally, physical assaults on John and his daughter, Betsy.

Over time, John sought out the help of friends and neighbors. They too witnessed the same things the family was claiming to regularly experience. The spirit seemed to acquire a voice, and would verbally taunt the family endlessly. When Betsy became engaged to a neighbor, Joshua Gardner, the spirit strongly opposed and would continue to voice “her” opinion, until finally driving the couple to call it off.

Poor John Bell was relentlessly tortured and taunted. His health grew worse, he began having seizures and eventually became bedridden. After John Bell passed away in 1820, the family found a bottle of a mysterious substance. The spirit boasted of giving the substance to John Bell and “fixing him”. According to the story, she even sang loudly and mockingly at John Bell’s funeral.

The spirit finally decided to leave, promising to return in 7 years. And so she did… although this time, only conversed with John Bell, Jr. and supposedly made several predictions about the coming age, such as the civil war, WWI, the Great Depression, and WWII. Then, the spirit again left, claiming to return in 107 years.

No one knows for sure if the Bell Witch actually returned. It’s possible that she did, in fact, return to the most direct Bell descendant, but no one made mention of it.

On the original Bell farm, there is a cave now known as the Bell Witch cave. It is said that the spirit lived/lives there. Is it another tourist trap to make money off unsuspecting visitors? Or is there any real credence to the stories? Even today, there are reports of strange happenings in the area. While visiting the Adams historical museum (located in what once was the Bell School), I asked one of the employees if there were strange occurences that take places there. She said sometimes things will move around. People will witness strange shadows that are unexplained. There are sounds that are sometimes heard, and lights that are seen in the distant fields.

So, who is the Bell Witch really? There is no way to know for sure. There are many guesses as to the real truth behind the legend. Some theories claim that Native American spirits continue to claim the land that was rightfully theirs. Others say that it was a spirit, demonic in nature, who even claimed to be present at Christ’s crucifixion. The more popular theory is that the spirit was a manifestation of Kate Batts, a local resident, who some suspected of practicing witchcraft. Another theory is that the “spirit” was nothing more than a manifestation of energy that is sometimes brought on by a young girl entering puberty, or even as a result of an incestuous relationship between John and Betsy. None of these claims can really be confirmed or proven… but then they also can’t be disproven.

While visiting Adams, I was a little surprised at how little there really wass to see. There is a little log cabin behind the brick school building, and a graveyard of Bell descendants (apparently the Bell family mostly went on to Mississippi, where they are laid to rest) just down the road.

The cave is inaccessible much of the year, except for the summer months when it dries out. We drove around to no avail, just trying to even find the entrance.

So, decide for yourself on what really can be logically explained away, or just let it continue to be a mystery of the unknown. It’s really more fun that way.

sources:

http://www.bellwitch.org by Pat Fitzhugh

http://paranormal.about.com/od/trueghoststories/a/aa041706.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Bell_Witch

http://www.prairieghosts.com/b-cave.html

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Experiencing Nashville: Clover Bottom Mansion

March 4, 2008 at 1:06 pm (blog, Blogroll, civil war, experiencing nashville, historic nashville, history, nashville, photo, photoblog, photography, pictures, tennessee) (, , , , , )

 I found Clover Bottom Mansion by accident. As I was driving around with a friend, we happened upon it and decided to go grab some lunch and have a picnic on the grounds before exploring it. The day started with mild temperatures for January, but as the sun started to fade, it got pretty chilly. Still, we pressed on, armed with our handy cameras. As I was doing research about this “Experiencing Nashville” post, I was surprised to see that there is a connection to former president Andrew Jackson. Apparently he played a larger role in the development of Nashville than I realized.Here is a little bit of history:

The pioneer story begins in 1766 with the exploration of the long hunters. The river was named in honor of one of their group, Uriah Stone. These adventurers carried the story of this bountiful, uninhabited land with them when they returned to Virginia and North Carolina. It was fourteen years, however, before the first settlers arrived.In the spring of 1780, John Donelson, having led the flotilla of settlers to Nashborough, recognized the need to plant a corn crop immediately. He again boarded the good ship Adventure with his family, poled up the Cumberland around the great bend until he found the mouth of Stones River. He was looking for the alluvial fields that were as fertile as the Valley of the Nile and which needed no clearing in order to plant.  A short distance from the confluence of the two rivers he found what he was looking for on the west bank of Stone’s River, forever after known as The Clover Bottoms. Here he docked his boat and built half-faced shelters to house his family on the opposite bluff. This was fifteen-year-old Rachel Donelson’ s first home in Tennessee.

 

In July, heavy rains inundated the corn crop. This unhappy event, plus constant harassment from the native Indians, caused the family to move to Mansker’ s Fort for protection.In the fall, word reached the settlers at Mansker’s that the flood waters had subsided and that the corn had eared. John Donelson sent a request to the men at Fort Nashborough to meet him at the Clover Bottoms to help harvest the corn. Approximately ten men from each fort built wooden sleds to drag the corn from the field to the boats moored in Stone’ s River. Several days were required to load the boats.As they left the shore, the boat from Fort Nashborough was attacked by Indians; only three settlers escaped. The Donelson party was on the north bank, harvesting the cotton planted there. They abandoned their boat loaded with corn and managed to escape on foot through the woods. Donelson’s heroic slave, Somerset, swam the Cumberland River and brought help from Mansker’s Fort to the stranded group.  Meanwhile, the boat from Fort Nashborough floated downstream, eventually reaching the bluffs with its cargo of corn and slain men. The settlers there rescued the corn and buried their dead.Some years later Andrew Jackson operated several businesses along the Stones River corridor. He first opened a general store near the Clover Bottoms. To stock his store he went to Philadelphia and traded land preemptions for flour, sugar, piece goods, and pocket knives. In 1805 Jackson, with two partners, formed the Clover Bottom Jockey Club. A race track and tavern were built by the river. The story of Jackson’ s duel with Charles Dickinson is well known. The unfortunate quarrel started at this race track.A story that is not so well known is that of Jackson’s boat yard on Stone’s River, near its mouth. Here he constructed five flat boats and one keel boat for former Vice President Aaron Burr who was leading a group of colonists to lands he had acquired in Louisiana. In 1812 Andrew Jackson became a military officer and pursued a military and political career. Thereafter his business interests on Stone’ s River faded away.

 

The United States of America was a fine place to be in the early 1800’s. The young country promised its citizens the right to free speech, to worship as they wished, and to pursue happiness. And it was the pursuit of happiness which much occupied the minds of the young men and women of the Clover Bottom Community of Donelson, Davidson County, Tennessee. In 1804, thirty seven year old Anthony Clopton, left the ranks of bachelorhood behind and married into one of the wealthiest families in the area, the Hoggatts of “Clover Bottom” Farm. “Rhody” Hoggatt moved with ease through the glittering world of antebellum Nashville and brought to the marriage a level of sophistication not always in evidence at what was still a rough and tumble frontier.  

The large tract of land known as Clover Bottom Plantation came to be owned by Dr. James Hoggatt, who built the antebellum home in 1858 on land inherited from his father, Capt. John Hoggatt, a Revolutionary War soldier. Apparently, the custom was to give land to the soldiers to repay them for their role in the Revolutionary War.

 

This fine Italian villa style home is centered in an area of local historical significance.Social life at Clover Bottom revolved around church, parties, and the race track; not necessarily in that order. Now horse racing was serious business, and no where on earth did appreciation for the sport transcend those of the Clover Bottom folk. Anthony Clopton and his neighbors were members of the Clover Bottom Jockey Club, the hub of Tennessee horse racing for many years. Among its members was one Andrew Jackson. General Jackson was particularly devoted to the “sport of Kings,” and never missed an opportunity to match his renowned horses against all comers.

 

The events surrounding the races of March 3, 1806 proved not only to be a rich source of gossip for the inhabitants for months, but continues to engage the interest of historians and the imagination of writers.In the 1920s Lebanon Road ran through the Clover Bottom farm property and crossed Stone’s River just west of the present road and bridge.

 

The old stone bridge abutments are still standing. The Stanford brothers, A.F. and R.D., had purchased the farm in 1918. Since Lebanon Road split the property, A.F. took the section to the east of the road and R.D. took the section to the west. A.F.’s part included the antebellum Hoggatt residence and R.D. built a two-story brick colonial revival home on his side of the road.In the period following World War I the outlying areas of Davidson County were still rural farm lands. A.F. Stanford ran a dairy farm at Clover Bottom while R.D. Stanford raised white-faced beef cattle. The majority of the population of the county, however, lived within the confines of the Nashville city limits. With the proliferation of the family motor car in the “Roaring Twenties,” excursions to the countryside became a popular pastime. For those fortunate enough to own an automobile, exploring country roads, farms, and creek sides was a welcome relief from city life. There was usually a picnic basket on board filled with fried chicken, biscuits that had been buttered while hot, stuffed eggs, and a special Nashville favorite, chess pie.Finding a swimming hole in one of the area rivers or creeks was an extra bonus on these outings. Although Mill Creek and Richland Creek were good for wading, neither furnished very deep holes for swimming. Men and boys swam in the Cumberland River, but it was considered too dangerous for women and children. The best swimming spots were found in the Harpeth and Stone’ s rivers.One such spot on Stone’s River was on A.F. Stanford’s side of the old bridge near where the present-day bridge crosses. Mr. Stanford created a beach by having tons of sand hauled in. He constructed a frame beach house with dressing rooms, lockers, and showers. There were boats, springboards, and picnic tables. He even employed Mr. and Mrs. M.B. Hall to manage the beach operation. Mr. Stanford’s generosity in creating this community beach is documented in a 1927 advertisement which stated that everything was free.It also stated that Old Hickory busses passed every thirty minutes-fare twenty-five cents.When the new bridge was constructed in the early 1930s, the old road leading to the beach entrance was closed. The new bridge piers were sunk into the the swimming hole and floods washed away the sand. All that remains of the once-lively recreational spot are photographs taken by Wiles Studio in 1931, now in the collection of Merle Stanford Davis who married A.F. Stanford in 1927 and was mistress of Clover Bottom until 1948.After World War II, Clover Bottom Plantation was sold to the State of Tennessee and is now listed as a historic site.  Compiled from the following sources:http://pages.prodigy.net/nhn.slate/nh00020.html Essay:Pioneer History of Stone’s River Near The Clover Bottoms By Amelia Whitsitt Edwards Carlyn McCullar Bain Suellen Clopton Blanton http://www.nashville.org/mhc/historical_markers_nashville.htm

 

update: 9/9/12

the current link for info of historic sites in Nashville, TN can be found here:

http://www.nashville.gov/mhc/historical_markers/nashville.asp#cloverbottommansion

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Experiencing Nashville: Part One – Sunnyside

January 18, 2008 at 2:49 pm (blog, Blogroll, civil war, experiencing nashville, historic nashville, history, nashville, photo, photoblog, photography, pictures)

Sunnyside

Part One - Sunnyside

For the past 5 years, I have lived within walking distance to a place called Sunnyside. It is pre-civil war antebellum home that stands right in the middle of what is now known as Sevier Park. I will occasionally park my car in the small lot right by the house and have a quick lunch. I really had no idea that the house was so old, and held such historical importance. Here are some fun bits of history about the place:

(Source: Metropolitan Historical Commission)

Caught in the middle of Battle of Nashville:
Sunnyside was located directly between the Union and Confederate lines prior to the Battle of Nashville on Dec. 15, 1864. Afterwards it served as a hospital for wounded soldiers.

Part One - Sunnyside

The home of Mrs. Jesse Benton, widow of Jesse Benton who left Nashville after a feud with Andrew Jackson. Built in the 1840s, restored in the 1920s by Col. Granville Sevier. Two log cabins east of the house, reputed to have been built by the French for trade with the Chickasaw and Choctaw Indians, may be the oldest structures in Metropolitan Nashville.

Metro Parks Department bought Sunnyside in 1945 from the estate of Col. Granville Sevier.

Note: Deedbook research indicates that the house was built in the 1850s. Documentary and archaeological evidence supports a 19th century date for the construction of the log cabins.

The offices of the Metropolitan Historical Commission and Metropolitan Historic Zoning Commission are located at Sunnyside in Sevier Park, 3000 Granny White Pike.

Sunnyside was built in about 1852 by Mary Childress Benton. Its site is part of Nashville’s early settlement history. On July 10, 1788, the state of North Carolina granted Thomas Hardiman 640 acres, equivalent to one square mile, along Brown’s Creek for his service in the Revolutionary War. The property changed hands several times before Mary Benton purchased about 38 acres of it in January 1852. By this time, a house of cedar logs existed on the present home site. Mary Benton was the widow of Jesse Benton and the first cousin of Sarah Childress Polk, wife of President James Polk. Jesse, along with his brother, Thomas Hart Benton, is remembered for engaging in a famous pistol fight with Andrew Jackson in 1813. The ongoing quarrel with Jackson caused both brothers to leave Nashville. Thomas Hart Benton moved to Missouri, becoming a well-known public figure and U.S. Senator. Jesse left Nashville to live and own property in both Texas and Louisiana, refusing to “live longer among people who gave such political preference to a man like Andrew Jackson.” Jesse died in 1843.

Part One - Sunnyside

During construction of the house, Mary lived in the log house and found it so comfortable that she incorporated it into an ell behind the main house, which is a traditional frame building with two rooms downstairs and two upstairs on either side of a central hall. This form is known as an I-house. Sunnyside’s vernacular interpretation of popular antebellum architectural styles combines decorative brackets, usually an Italianate feature, with the central porch, two-story columns, and symmetry of Greek Revival.

Part One - Sunnyside

Mary brought her widowed niece, Minerva Douglass, and her niece’s two children, Henry and Mary, to live in the completed house. Young Mary Douglass gave Sunnyside its name, reflecting its bright, open hillside location. Mary Douglass later married Theodore Francis (Frank) Sevier of Kentucky, and the young couple lived at Sunnyside until the Civil War, when Frank enlisted in the Confederate Army.

John Shute bought the property during the Civil War for his daughter, Mrs. Stephen Childress, whose husband was a relative of Mary Benton. The couple changed the name of the house to Lee Monte to honor Confederate General Robert E. Lee. The Battle of Nashville raged around the house on December 15 and 16, 1864. The property stood between Confederate and Union lines and still bears reminders of the fighting in scars left by minie balls on the porch door and columns. Wounded Union soldiers were treated here in the days following the battle. The Childress family returned after the war and enlarged the farm to 140 acres before selling it in 1875.

In 1882, Dr. L.G. Noel purchased the estate at auction. Noel owned the property longer than any other individual and renamed it Idlewild for his mother’s home in Memphis. Dr. Noel was a prominent Nashville dentist and also taught dentistry classes at Vanderbilt, where he served as chair of dental pathology from 1905 until the dental school closed in 1926. During this period, the property slowly changed from a country estate to a suburban one as modern conveniences like telephones and indoor plumbing were added. A few chickens, horses, and a dairy cow remained, but farming gave way to suburbanization as the Noel family subdivided part of the land.

After Dr. Noel’s death, Granville Sevier, son of Frank and Mary Douglass Sevier, came back to visit the house where his mother had grown up. In 1927, he purchased 20 1/2 acres from the Noel family and brought his mother back to the home she had christened Sunnyside. Sevier renovated the house, adding the one-story brick wings, enlarging the basement, and building the stone office. His heirs sold the property to the city of Nashville after his death in 1945.

Sevier Park opened on this property in 1948. In 1954, a swimming pool was added to the park, and the community center was built in 1963. By 1985, the park had picnic shelters, a ball diamond, tennis courts, a playground, and a basketball court. Sunnyside was occupied by the family of a Parks Department superintendent until 1987. Later, the building housed various community groups. A major restoration was completed in 2004, and Sunnyside is now home to the Metropolitan Historical Commission and Metropolitan Historic Zoning Commission.
If you want to check it out for yourself, here are some directions:

Sunnyside in Sevier Park is located in the Belmont-Hillsboro and 12th South neighborhoods, where 12th Avenue South becomes Granny White Pike. From downtown, take 12th Avenue South south (away from downtown). Sevier Park is located about two and a half miles from downtown. Turn left on Kirkwood and the driveway is on the right. Sunnyside is the yellow Greek Revival house in the middle of the park.

Sunnyside is owned by Metro-Nashville Government and is located in Sevier Park on 12th Avenue South (Granny White Pike) just north of I-440 (no exit off I-440). The grounds are open to the public but the house itself is not.

 

Stay tuned for the next installment of “Experiencing Nashville” by Sally Kent

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photos from Bethlehem

December 20, 2007 at 2:48 pm (belief, Bethlehem, blog, Blogroll, Christ, christian, christmas, god, jesus, photo, photoblog, photography, pictures)

I went through the Walk Through Bethlehem a week ago. A local church creates a little Bethlehem town that you can walk through and see different shops and how some of the things were done around the time of Christ.

Check out the photos from it. Unfortunately, the lighting was awful, and the flash sort of ruined the mood. Still, take a look:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/sallykent2006/

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I guess it’s time

November 26, 2007 at 6:48 pm (belief, blog, Blogroll, god, introspective, journal, life questions, photo, photoblog, photography, pictures, questioning, rant, reflecting, support, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , )

First of all… there are some new photos to check out. I did my first pet photoshoot with my cousins’ dogs. Surprising enough, there are some really cute ones. I didn’t think the dogs sat still long enough to get anything at all, but they sure were cute in their little Christmas outfits. Take a look:

You can see larger images at http://www.flickr.com/photos/sallykent2006/

 

 

 

 

Ok, so it’s been a while since I’ve updated this here blog. I am back from my Thanksgiving trip to the north GA mountains. It was the first time since I’ve lived in Nashville (almost 9 years!?) that my parents haven’t come to Nashville for Thanksgiving. I guess it sort of became a tradition without us really meaning for it to. At first my mom was so anxious and worried about me traveling alone that she didn’t want me to make the drive for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. That was the compromise we came up with.

I am so thankful for so many things that I can hardly put it into words. If I start, then I might not stop. I am constantly astonished and amazed at the good things I have been given in life that I don’t at all deserve.

I think that is what makes me hold back when I am having to face such contradicting emotions. The past couple of years have been difficult, just because of having to watch my mom’s health decline. It is something none of us were prepared for. Yet, still I am so thankful that there are people, and skilled doctors, and believers out there that have had the wisdom and knowledge, and energy to do things when I have not.

So, all of that to say… even when I don’t have the energy to give thanks, I am thankful. If you are out there, and you are a part of my life in any way, know that you are on the list of things I am thankful for.

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the Beginning of the End

November 21, 2007 at 11:12 pm (autumn, belief, blog, Blogroll, fall, friendship, god, introspective, journal, photo, photoblog, photography, pictures, reflecting, Uncategorized) (, , )

Well, we finally made it back around to the holiday season. At this time tomorrow, people will begin their journeys to countless retail stores to get the first pick at the hot deals. This officially begins the Christmas season, as well as the final leg of the year 2007.

Actually this is the first time since I’ve been “on my own” that I’ve come back to Georgia for Thanksgiving. Normally, my parents make their annual voyage up to Nashville for their Thanksgiving visit. This year, due to my mom’s cancer, I decided to come down here instead to save them the trip.

This time of year is always bittersweet for me. This year more so than usual, but I can’t really articulate just why. I will have to take some time and really reflect before I can write much about it all.

As of now, it is time for me to turn in for the evening. Tomorrow morning I will be helping out in the kitchen, trying not to completely ruin Thanksgiving dinner with my horrible cooking skills. My family is known for cooking huge meals. This time will be no different.

I am really looking forward to some great food! I’m sure there will be a football game on at some point. I want to make a point to watch part of the parade, and see the huge tree be lit in NY.

My thoughts feel disconnected tonight. I need sleep. And I need to be able to breathe. That’s always a good thing. For the past couple of days I have felt like I’m coming down with a cold. That always leads to chest congestion and awful breathing problems. I’ve started on some medication and have been trying to drink a lot of water and hot tea. I hope I can keep it at bay. We’ll see how that goes.

The leaves were gorgeous on my drive from TN. Here are a few shots I took out my car window as I drove down the interstate. I will leave you with these:

Until next time…

May visions of turkey legs dance in all of our heads tonight

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Fall on the Natchez Trace

November 12, 2007 at 1:42 pm (autumn, blog, Blogroll, fall, friendship, journal, photo, photoblog, photography, pictures, reflecting, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , )

Yesterday was a fun day! I was feeling good, which was a welcomed change. With all of the weather grossness, my breathing has been pretty rough. I have a tendency to over do it the second I’m feeling some relief.

I desperately needed to get out! I was starting to feel the tug of cabin fever, and I knew the winter blues were not far away.

So, a couple of friends and I piled into my car and took a drive. We trapsed out the Natchez Trace, which is a scenic roadway that runs from Nashville down to Tupelo, MS. Parts of the “Old Trace” are still visible, and walkable. It dates back to the days of pioneers and indians, and all of the bartering and trading that made Nashville what it is today. There are little historic stops along the way. I am a lover of history. I love to see how everything is connected, and discovering how something so mundane from so long ago somehow affects who I am today.

The scenery is gorgeous out that way. The farther you go, the more scenic it becomes. I was hoping for some pretty fall foliage. I was not disappointed!

 

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the need for normalcy

October 11, 2007 at 1:15 pm (blog, Blogroll, journal, photo, photography, pictures)

mountain morning

Well, I am back in town. It’s always a good feeling to get back. I am desperately needing to feel like my life is back to normal, though I’m beginning to wonder if there really is such a thing. What is normal to you may not be normal to me. It’s all relative.

I need my routine. I need to feel like life is somewhat back under some sort of control. I don’t know if that is reality, though. I guess it is in our nature to feel like we have control of something that is so extremely uncontrollable. That is a sobering, and strangely comforting, thought.

I got in yesterday afternoon. The drive from GA to Nashville was an easy one. I took it slow, meandering some at first while attempting to take some photos of the early morning mist on the river. I have to admit, though, that I was sort of freaked out. I found a couple of spots to pull off the road and take a little jaunt, halfway expecting to find some strange homeless fisherman waiting at the water’s edge. After some hasty, blurry shots, I jumped back into my car and continued my drive.

misty morning

misty morning

The first thing I did when I got home was to pull open my blinds, only to find that a nest of wasps had made their home inside my window. I ran to get the bug spray and began a lengthy battle. I counted almost 20 little bastards, yet, I somehow escaped unscathed (and more importantly, unstung).

I proceeded to unload my car and begin unpacking. Somewhere in the midst of it all, I decided to rearrange my room, grasping at some vague notion of regaining control. It took until evening for me to finally get things back in order.

My roomate woke me up this morning to the smell of something burning. The heater in our guest room was somehow turned on and nearly caught the bed on fire. There is a big burned spot on the side of the mattress. I guess someone was looking out for us last night.

I’m skipping my first class this morning. I just can’t get myself out of bed and motivated. There’s always next week.

I desperately feel the need to do something “normal”. I need to go buy unnecessary things at the store. I need to spend hours at the bookstore. I need to drink a whole lot of coffee. I need to find pretty things to take pictures of along the way. I need to light all of the candles in my room and read something really significant.

I’ve gotten out of the habit of doing the things that recharge me. I need to figure out how to get back into those things… to read more books, to write down my thoughts, to take photos of the mundane things that make up life, to allow myself to get lost in music, to pick up my guitar and play until my fingers are sore. These are the things that make me feel alive. I really need that right now.

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