Skulls! I have always loved skulls, human and animal alike. They are the art of life in its most true form – what could be more beautiful? Since my diagnosis with multiple sclerosis, skulls have taken on a whole new meaning and I often find myself wondering what exactly is happening to my precious skull meat that lies just beyond my cranium bones. Considering this obsession of mine, imagine my elation when I recently traveled to Nashville and my host’s roost was filled with skulls! Music City, I like you already!
A working trip for my musician beau, I was invited to tag along to take in the sights and, more importantly, the sounds of the iconic Nashvegas (the name preferred by my dear friend, Evan, who visited the town often when she was younger). And Nashvegas didn’t disappoint. With its small-town-meets-big-town charm, plenty of handlebar mustaches to go around, and new friends that graciously opened up their home to us – Nashville proved that southern hospitality still exists. But I already knew that.
I experienced southern hospitality not long after I met Evan while we both were going through the drudgery of grad school. An instant friend, we lovingly threw stink eyes at professors, complained about the ridiculousness of assigned readings, and chitchatted for HOURS about things I can’t recall. The first year, to celebrate one of our birthdays, we planned a girlie sleepover, à la Sixteen Candles, at Evan’s apartment.
After we polished off the last bottle of wine and decided to call it a night, my faith in humanity was ever so slightly restored. Set up in Evan’s linen closet was a shelf prepared just for me. Seriously. Travel-size bottles of toiletries, fresh towels (of every size!), a glass for water…everything I needed to feel absolutely at home and comfortable. I think I even took a photo to remind myself later that it actually happened (yes, that’s how cynical I am).
Nashville felt a little bit like this. It was welcoming. Its residents were nice. Genuinely nice. Folks were talkative and authentic. And even though it appears that a new generation of hipsters are moving in at alarming rates, it also appears that the city has enough southern hospitality to welcome all of the mustaches with open arms. Let’s just hope they have enough mustache wax to fill everyone’s personal linen closet shelf.
Thanks for the warm reception, Nashvegas, until next time!
And, Evan, your shelf is waiting for you in Denver.