Nashville Day Trip

A few weeks ago I posted about how I made my first ever mileage run that took me to Nashville, Tennessee.  Originally, when I was planning to do this, I had booked a ticket to Nashville for this past weekend (December 3, 2011) for a “day trip”  The plan was that I would go head downtown, explore a bit, grab some lunch, and then head back to airport to catch a flight back home.  It was after booking this trip I had decided to book separate pure mileage run for a Saturday in November, because two trips at around $100/piece just isn’t that bad.  Besides, with this past weekend I can actually say that I have been to Nashville.

I won’t bore anyone with any details on the flights – they weren’t overly notable.  I did get Upgraded on my three eligible legs (ATL-BNA, BNA-ATL, ATL-ECP) of which all but the BNA-ATL cleared 6 days out (the BNA-ATL cleared 2 days out), which is always nice.  The first flight of the day I had my first “celebrity” sighting on a plane when I realized that former Florida State football coach Bobby Bowden was sitting in the row behind me.  I’m not an FSU fan by any measure (I stay loyal to the Knights), but when you live in NW Florida it’s kinda hard to not know who he is.  Which is why I was surprised that only one person briefly mentioned anything to him on the plane.  Also wouldn’t have figured to be someone to fly out of ECP…

Anyways, I found out the night before my flight that I would risk missing the bus to the downtown area since from official arrival time to bus departure time was 9 minutes.  Now I knew that good chance that due to the schedule padding that is common with ATL flights I would be fine, but I just didn’t want to risk it in the end.  I checked with Hertz and with my corporate rate code I was able to get a 1-day rental for $25.  Considering that a 1-way taxi costs $25 between BNA and downtown, I just went ahead and rented a car.  Paid for the Nissan Versa, but got upgraded to a Toyota Corolla (oh, how I hate Corollas!) when I got to my parking spot.

After a very quick drive downtown, I parked the car, and proceeded to walk around.  I honestly had no idea where I was going or what I was going to do, so I just did some aimless wandering.  Eventually settled on some BBQ for lunch from a place on Broadway called Jack’s, where my meal consisted of a half BBQ chicken with baked beans, mac and cheese, cornbread, and a Sam Adams Winter Lager.  They had a variety of sauces to choose from, with the XXX-911 Sauce I think being the best…a great combination of flavor and heat (and really not burn your taste buds off hot either).  After that filling meal, there was more walking to be done, and as such I continued to explore the downtown area.  The one thing I did realize as I explored was that to get the most out of this town, you kinda need to enjoy country music.  A lot of the attractions are geared towards this it seems, well at least the things tourists would be here for.  I know there is other stuff to do here, but that is how I saw it.

Looking East on Brodway

Riverfront and Regional Rail Station

Old and New (Fort Nashborough + LP Field)

Jack's Bar-B-Que on Broadway

Downtown Nashville Skyline

As it got closer to time to head back to the airport I grabbed my car, drove over to Vanderbilt University, just to see what that was all about and then back the airport.  It was here that my track record of being able to avoid Millimeter Wave and Backscatter X-Ray machines ended.  I’ve always been able to make my way into a metal detector only lane, but this time that was all that they were running at BNA.  Hardly the end of the world.

I had 3 hour layover in Atlanta on the way back.  I originally thought of spending time in one of the Delta Sky Clubs, but decided to use the free wifi in the Concourse E food court (only free public wifi in ATL) before heading over to gate E26 where I found myself watching the sun set over Concourse D and the Air France Boeing 777 that was finishing preparations for a flight to Paris-CDG.  After dinner in Concourse T, I headed back to Concourse A for the flight home.

Atlanta Sunset - Air France Boeing 777

It was a quick trip, but a good way for someone like me to spend a Saturday.  I can finally say that I’ve actually been to Nashville and can say that I flew somewhere just for lunch I guess.  Either way when you have nothing better to do why not get up and go?

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