Nashville, Y’All, Part Two

One of the cool things about being in a different part of the country is that the birds are different. The computer I’m using to post on is right beside a window that looks out over the backyard and once in awhile I catch a glimpse of a bird or two flying about. They have red birds down here, people. We do not have red birds of any kind where I come from. Maybe that is why they also have red velvet cake. We do not have red velvet cake in my parts very often either.

When last we saw me in Nashville, I was having pizza and wine and discussing all things literary. As with all idylls, that one, too, ended. And yesterday it was time for my Forced March downtown. A Forced March is a common term in my family for the walk you take after you’ve eaten too much at a celebratory dinner. You have to have a Forced March to earn dessert. In my case, the Forced March occurred before the meal, because I knew that the meal would be, how shall I say this tactfully, large and bad for me.

Update: there are funny squirrels here, too. They are not red, but they have the fluffiest golden tails you’ve ever seen, or at least I’ve ever seen.

Anyway, my Forced March was from the east side to downtown, over the Shelby Street Pedestrian Bridge. My destination was to meet Suzanne for lunch at my favorite Meat ‘N Three, Varallo’s. Suzanne left her office on 4th street to walk to meet me and called me as she was huffing and puffing up one side of the bridge. I was huffing and puffing up the other and we collapsed on each other in the middle. Then recovered quickly enough to have a little whirl through the western boot and apparel store on Broadway and eat at Varallo’s. They’ve remodeled the place recently and it was closed for a long time so I was eager to see it. I am here to report that it looks…..just the same. We’re pretty sure they did a lot of work on the kitchen. Or something. Anyway, who cares, the food is divine and I made the owner happy when I tasted his sweet corn and pronounced it incredible.

Leg Two of the Forced March took me onto the Frist Museum, , where I met Melinda and we viewed the exhibit: Societe Anonyme: Modernism for America. The Societe Anoyme was an organization founded in 1920 in order to advance the cause of contemporary art. Katherine Dreier, Marcel Duchamp, and Man Ray founded it and they had exhibits and programs of all the hot artists then, many of which are on display at the Frist. It is quite a good show if you have the chance to see it. Another interesting exhibit is on the photographs of Rosemary Laing.

After all that Forced Marching, I gratefully accepted a ride home from Melinda and last night she and I went to dinner at J. Alexander’s. Here’s a little hint for those of you who might also go to this spot–they apparently have huge pours, as in 7 ounces. I read this on the menu but I didn’t really process it until the damage had already been done. But it was fun. Excess always is, until the next day.

And that is it so far. Now I’m going to go do some real writing.

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