Friday, November 27, 2020

Home Sweet Home

Hello from Nashville!

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and got to enjoy some time with family and friends. I had my first ever Tennessean Thanksgiving with a friend from Nashville and her family, complete with homemade chicken 'n dumplins, cornbread "dressing", crawfish pie, and Coca-cola "salad". It was absolutely fantastic. Her family even has a chicken coup in their backyard, so I came home not only with a very full stomach, but also with a dozen eggs right from the source. Pretty cool.
The past three and a half weeks have been nothing short of amazing. I knew, moving here, that life was going to change a lot. After all, it is a brand new city, brand new state, different people, different politics, and way different culture. But what I didn't expect was how freeing it would actually feel to be away from so much negativity and stress, and around people much more in line with my way of thinking. It's refreshing. I've met so many new, neat people here and I couldn't be happier. When people ask me "How's Nashville?" my response has become - confidently - this is the best move I've ever made.

But let's rewind for a minute, back to moving weekend. Halloween was a bit chaotic, loading the U-haul in the morning with some friends from the gym (shoutout to you amazing people!), then heading to my parents' house for trick-or-treating with my nieces and nephews. I drove home that night to a very empty apartment, slept on the floor with a jacket for a pillow and a different jacket for a cover (truly the worst sleep I've ever had), and was up at 5:30am the next morning to drive the truck down to Tennessee. It took just over eight hours and I white-knuckled it the entire drive down. It was terrifying driving such a massive contraption when I normally drive a compact car! 
I met the landlord outside and got my keys, then a friend met me to help unload everything. It only took us about two hours to empty the truck (thank God for the furniture dolly), and before long everything I own was strewn about my apartment. We grabbed dinner at a little local restaurant next to my building, and I headed home to do as much organizing as I could. The next morning, I returned the truck at the U-haul place and Uber-ed back to the apartment. My friend picked me up for coffee around 9:00 (Frothy Monkey is becoming a fast favorite), then dropped me off at the airport. I flew back to Michigan, Uber-ed to my apartment, ran a few errands (like dropping internet supplies off to UPS), cleaned my apartment, and took a few last-minute things out to my car, then met my former landlord to hand in my keys, do an apartment walkthrough, and officially check out. Needless to say, it was quite the exhausting morning.

That night, I went over to my parents' house and spent the evening watching Hallmark movies with my mom. Neither of us felt like going anywhere, so we hunkered down with some tea and ordered Panera for dinner. It was the perfect "last-night-in-Michigan". And early the next morning, she even made coffee before I left to drive back down to Nashville. Another eight hours in the car, another several trips up and down the elevator to unload the last load of stuff, and I was home. Finally. November 3, 2020 - the day I officially moved to Nashville, Tennessee.
It didn't take long to unload, sort, and get situated in my new apartment. It's hard to believe it's only been three and a half weeks, but already I'm starting to feel like a local. I've started running occasionally (mostly downtown to the John Siegenthaler pedestrian bridge for sunrise or sunset) have gone to see extremely talented musician friends play around town, met several other friends who have introduced me to the neat, less touristy places around town, and even bought a mandolin (I played piano and flute for years, and love the sound of folk/bluegrass music). I've met people just visiting Nashville on vacation (from California, Michigan, Georgia - just all over) and love when they ask me what I'd recommend to see in town. I will say, the line between being social and being smart with my money (and my liver) is a fine one, and I walk it hard, but I'm figuring out the delicate balance between the two.
 It's so much fun, finally living in a big city after visiting so many and always saying, "One day!"
I love my snazzy new little black mandolin
So here we are. At the moment, I'm hanging out in my new apartment, sat on the floor writing and watching Lord of the Rings while texting a few friends here, making plans for the weekend. It feels almost dreamlike to be here, but I'm so thankful that I am. Work is going well (I have my little home office set up in front of my window), I've already travelled a bit (down to visit friends in Alabama, then Panama City Beach last weekend), and have plans to drive home to Michigan for Christmas. I'll be posting an apartment tour in the next week or so, and hopefully get on a more consistent blogging schedule after that. I can already tell there's going to be a lot to share from Nashville, and I will do my best to keep up!

Life is good. Life is so good. And it is so good to be home!

Cozy Nashville Apartment Tour

When I graduated from college in Minnesota, I moved from a single dorm room to my childhood bedroom in my parents' house in Michigan. Tw...