The Weekly Traveler

Greetings from…Memphis! :)  After another week working in Nashville, I’m safe at home. Safe, and zonked. :)

For the most part, the week was quiet. I worked my paid job in the morning and my unpaid job for a few hours in the afternoon and evening. And I walked a lot in between.

I started on Sunday with a return to Two Rivers Park and Shelby Bottoms trails. Y’all remember this bridge over the Cumberland River from my last Nashville trip:

cumberland river pedestrian bridge

Here’s a look from the bridge down to the Shelby Bottoms greenway:

shelby bottoms greenway

Not so bad getting down there, but getting back up wasn’t so much fun. :)

After my walk, I headed to Subway for a quick supper and then a trip to Kroger for some yogurt to keep in my room. That’s when I discovered my wallet was missing. The wallet that I put in MY BACK POCKET BEFORE I WENT ON MY 3-MILE WALK.

I tore my purse and car apart, of course, retraced my steps to Subway (no luck) before dashing back over to the park to repeat my walk. I didn’t especially remember having it at the park, but I hadn’t actually needed it either, you know?

So I run-walked along for a bit, intent on checking out one particular bench where I had paused to reset my playlist and had perched on a bench for a minute. My hope was that the sitting movement might have pushed my wallet out of my pocket there, and that it was tucked in behind the bench where no one would notice it even though it’s bright red and shiny.

No luck, so with darkness pending, I headed back to the hotel to look up the phone numbers of my credit card and bank. Along the way I prayed that they’d be able to overnight replacements, because I had about $40 in cash to last the week and I had to get gas in my car. (My plan had been to use one of my bank’s branches in Nashville to get cash and to use my credit card to fill up the gas tank.) As I was walking into my hotel, I felt oddly calm. I had a plan.

I also had a wallet. It was in the floor of my hotel room, where it had apparently fallen at some point before my departure. Needless to say, it was a hallelujah moment! :) Also needless to say, I developed a minor case of OCD with respect to wallet-checking the rest of the week.

With all that drama, I decided to avoid the trails on Monday afternoon and walk from my hotel to Opry Mills, a nearby shopping mall I’ve never been to before and really had no desire to see at all. But it wasn’t a trail, so I packed my Life is Good backpack with my wallet and other essentials and headed out for the day’s adventure.

sights near opryland

Nothing particularly interesting along the early part of the walk. I did go into the FREE Dukes of Hazard Museum, where there’s a pretty good collection of memorabilia. If you are/were a fan of the show, it would be worth a stop-in.

From there, I headed through the Opryland Hotel.

opryland hotel

Nothing says ‘Nashville’ like a bunch of New Orleans-inspired balcony and palm trees. :) A slow drizzle had started up by the time I got there, so I dashed in a side door and promptly got lost. I think I walked two miles up and down stairs just to get to the atrium.

From there, I passed the Grand Ol’ Opry (new):

grand ole opry

Pretty, but closed, so I kept trekking until I reached the mall. Now, I know I snapped a couple of pictures in the mall, but I can’t seem to find them. I did, however, find a picture of my dinner.

which wich sandwich

I love Which Wich sandwiches. They have a delicious healthy-fat olive spread that adds tons of flavor to the simplest sandwich. We don’t have the brand here in Memphis, so I took the opportunity to enjoy a muffaletta-sorta for dinner. The only downside was the food court ambiance. :)

After walking once around the mall, I headed back to my hotel. My feet were screaming at me by that point. My total walk time was about 2 hours for Monday, so I guessed they earned the right.

Tuesday’s walk was along the Stones River Greenway, starting at the Percy Priest Dam.

scenes from tuesday's walk

This path starts at the dam and actually connects to the greenway I walked on Monday. It would make for an awesome bike ride.

For Wednesday’s walk, I chose another section of the Stones River Greenway. This leg started at the Heartland trailhead and had the river on one side and farmland on the other. There were also hills.

2 view of a hill

This was a single hill. The image on the left was my view. The one on the right is the POV of my shoes.

Other scenes from this section of trail:

more scenes from the walking trail

Even with the hills, this is my favorite section of the greenway. I like the openness of it vs. the towering trees of the other greenways.

But they’re all good, and my six hours walking them was time well spent.

Today, I only squeezed in a half-hour walk, but I’m headed out to one of the local greenways tomorrow morning for a longer walk. I’ll be glad to get back to the gym next week so that I can rest a bit. :)

Speaking of next week, I’m not working or traveling next week, so I hope to have content that might be useful. Or at least entertaining. :)

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Road Notes…and Not Much Else

I’m zipping along here, still going a half dozen different ways but in a mostly controlled manner. :)

I had a work trip to the Nashville area last week, which was quite enjoyable because I got to stay in the Opryland area. Not that I care anything about Opryland, but I do LOVE the miles of paved walking trails in the area. After taking a couple of days off all exercise to try to get my back straightened out, I was more than ready to MOVE.

On the drive over I had some BBQ Tofu Bites for sustenance. And to keep from gnawing off my arm. These things are tasty travel snacks, let me tell you, and VERY filling!
road food bbq tofu bites
When I arrived in town, I didn’t even check into the hotel before heading out the closest trail: Two Rivers Park.

pedestrian bridge over Cumberland River

I didn’t walk far before arriving at the pedestrian bridge over the Cumberland River. Apparently it’s new because it doesn’t show up on Google maps. :)

Even though I’ve been to Nashville about a 1000 times, I still felt a bit tourist-y so I paused for some photos of a river boat coming down the river.

cumberland river with riverboat

So much for that excitement. :) The passengers were apparently too intent on going to the Opryland Hotel to bother waving to a touristy-y type on the bridge. So I kept walking and entered Shelby Bottoms where the humidity was about 110%. After about 3 days, or a half-hour, I can’t really say, I noticed that it wasn’t quite so sunny anymore.

storm coming

Holy mother of pearl, I’d better get back to the car! Ten or fifteen minutes later, I’d reached this sign:

you are here sign

…and it started thundering. My car was parked over on the other side of the river where you see a ‘P’ for parking lot. I picked up speed but not a whole lot as there be hills around there and besides, my back was still a little bit tweaked.

rainy parking lot

I didn’t quite make it. The bottom fell out just as I reached the edge of the parking lot (you can see the bridge I was on in the background), and I took refuge under a tree.

And then I remembered that where there be thunder, there be lightning. Soggy beats dead any day of the week.

Oddly enough, the hotel staff didn’t think it weird to have a soaking wet woman checking in. Maybe that’s a Nashville thing–all those country musicians. :) Anyway, the lightning arrived shortly after I did and bounced all around us, eventually taking the internet and cable service out. It couldn’t take my book, though, so I had a nice couple of hours kicked back reading.

The next day I had to work early and then knocked around East Nashville for a bit. I was trying to find a trailhead to the park on the east side of the river, but the one I found was deserted and had me feeling a bit nervous. So I went for ice cream instead. :)

ice cream from jeni's in Nashville

At $5 for a small serving, it’s a little pricey, but it was also quite delicious. Very rich, though. I was satisfied about halfway through, but I was too cheap to throw it away. I headed back to Two Rivers Park to walk off the excess.

I intended to take a different route than the day before, but after walking through a tunnel and up a long and winding hill I realized I was back at the parking lot I’d been in the day before. So I kept going and went back across the river. But I did keep an eye on the sky. :)

After working the next morning, I headed home where I’ve been working on one thing after another. Tonight I’m going to catch up on my reader while watching my beloved Cardinals try to hang on to first place in the NL West.

I hope you’re all doing marvelously well!

Q & A: The Labor Day Edition

Q & ADid you have a labor-filled Labor Day? I did…until my sciatica (self-diagnosed) started up, and then I had a s-l-o-w, and largely horizontal, weekend.

As I was reclining on my heating pad and watching the Cardinals reclaim first place in the National League Central (yay!), the announcers mentioned a Q&A with…well, somebody I’ve forgotten. But it did prompt me to create a new Q & A post here. I just love learning more about y’all!

So here we go:

  • To tie in with Labor Day, I’m wondering what was your favorite job ever?
  • In case you can’t think of one, whose job do you wish you had?
  • Labor Day signals back-to-school for lots of communities. (Memphis students started a month ago!) What do you remember most about the start of a new school year?
  • Unrelated to anything other than my trip through the mountains next month, I’m wondering what’s your preference: mountain hideaway or beach house?

My answers:
Fav job: I like the salary of my last job, but I love what I’m doing now. Freelancing suits me. I just need to build a more consistent work flow.

Wish job: I’d like to have Oprah Winfrey’s job. Her money would be good, too, but I’d really love doing what she does in helping people, exploring new fields, vacationing wherever she wants… Okay, so I do have some base needs. I haven’t been anywhere tropical in a while. :)

School year: I loved getting new school supplies! Everything was so crisp and fresh and new. The air was filled with mystery and expectation and the smell of freshly opened crayons. (Have you noticed that crayons don’t smell the same anymore?)

Mountains vs. beach: I love the serenity and beauty of the mountains, but my spirit comes alive on the beach.

Your turn! If you’re not overwhelmed with laboring fatigue, I’d love to read your answers!