Updated: Oct 2
Liat was invited to a conference in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Half an hour drive from Nashville. Great! I can visit Johnny Cash and buy an Acoustic Guitar. I think there is no better place to buy an Acoustic Guitar than the city known as "home of country music." In Israel, it's almost impossible to find good used Acoustic Guitar at a fair price, so I planned to buy one in the US for a long time. And finally, it happens! Perfect.
The trip started on the left foot. When we entered the airport in Tel Aviv, they told us the flight was canceled. United Airlines said it was because one of the pilots is sick. So they rescheduled us for a flight leaving Tel Aviv only 11 hours after the original plan. And if this is not enough, we had to wait for a connection flight at Newark Airport for another 8 hours. Luckily, we both had laptops and lots of work to do.
After almost 16 hours on air and 19 hours of the airport's waiting, we finally landed in Nashville. The time was 13:45, so we hurried to rent a car and drove to the city, hoping to get in time for a visit to one of the city museums. First, we visited the Hall of Fame and the Museum of Country Music. Next, we had a great experience visiting the Johnny Cash museum. Then, at 18:00, we took a walk downtown. Such a cluster of clubs and pubs playing live music – I have never seen in my life: country singer-songwriters, country & rock bands, cover players… Our heads, especially our ears, were dizzy. We couldn't decide which place to enter.
Eventually, we found some free seats somewhere and got in. We heard a lovely singer-songwriter, ate some wings with BBQ sauce, and fell asleep… after an hour of napping. Then, we gathered strength with the music surrounding us and drove to our cute hotel in Murfreesboro.
The next day, Liat talked at her conference, and I had a mission: to buy a good used acoustic guitar. I tried at least 15 guitars at the first shop I went to but couldn't find what I want exactly. Then, finally, I found a great guitar at the large shop of Guitar Center: used Martin D-35 acoustic-electric guitar with excellent sound, at 2,000$. No way I could have seen such a guitar in Israel, not at this price for sure. Thrilled, I drove to the grave of my hero – Johnny Cash, in Hendersonville Memory Gardens. I sat in front of both graves of Cash and June Carter, his wife, and played some of Cash's songs. After that, and went to pick Liat from the university.
I pulled her at 17:00, not in time for any museums, so we decided to take a walk at Nashville Centennial Park – even though it was pretty cold.
The 3rd day started the same for Liat – she went to the university to her conference, and I rushed to Nashville. I visited their War Memorial and the Museum of War (a branch of the Tennessee State Museum). It took me an hour or so. Then I went to the Tennessee State Museum – an impressive free entry museum with many stories and artifacts. I spent there 2 hours (could have spent more) and afterward took a 6-minute walk to the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum. After being in the impressive Country Hall of Fame and Museum, this museum was very disappointing: too few exhibits, no central story that fascinates you. Look like they chose musicians eclectically and just put in the displays each item they put their hands on, like guitar, shirt, CD's, etc. I left the museum after less than an hour and climbed to the Capitol building through the grave of the 11th president of the USA, James K. Polk. I took a short walk in the Capitol building – visited the Senate Hall and the General Assembly of Tennessee Hall.
On my way to pick Liat from Murfreesboro – I had another bad experience – a car accident. I took a turn in a cross-section and hit the driver that was in front. I have no idea how it happened. Lucky me, I drove very slowly, so no harm was done – only a few scratches on both cars. Still, we waited an hour and a half for a police officer to arrive. Both the policemen and the other driver were very friendly, so the whole event ended without further complications.
I was hoping to see a music concert while in Nashville, but it took me some time to get over the stupid accident. So Liat had an Idea – to visit a unique hotel she read about in a rival blog. And it was amazing: a big park with lakes, little bridges, waterfalls, fountains, restaurants, and shops - all inside a large hotel. It looks much better than it sounds. We've been there for the whole evening and returned to our hotel, tired and happy.
Our last day started early. We drove to a town named Franklin. Of course, we had to encounter something unpredictable – we had a flat tire… after one hour and 10$, we got on the road again. We visited Carter's House – a historic house that had the bad fortune to become a battlefield during one of the brutal and violent battles of the American Civil War. Afterward, we took a walk at the main street of Franklin, which her residents think it's one of the beautiful main streets in America. It was lovely with lots of shops, restaurants, churches and old houses from the 19th century. Great atmosphere.
From there, we drove to the airport. We had to take three flights to get back home. But I have no complaints. I have a new guitar!