Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Visiting with Friends from Texas

Thursday-Sunday (Jul 23-26):

Thursday was a cleaning day for us. We spent several hours cleaning the Duchess and polishing the wood inside the RV along with removing some bug and road dirt from the outside of the rig. That evening we met Mal and Fran Vaughn from San Antonio in Nashville. Mal and Fran are good friends of ours that we have known since we starting dating in 2002. Mal has a group of friends from Orange Texas that have known one another since elementary school and get together every 1-2 years for "mini reunions". They hold these gatherings at various location around the USA since everyone in the group lives in different states. This year was one of the smaller groups with only 4 attending here in Nashville. We had dinner at a very nice sports bar in Nashville and met Chuck, Tim and Andy who are the ones attending this year along with Mal.

On Friday all of us took a small bus tour of Nashville and the surrounding towns with an outfit called Tommy's Tours. Tommy was the bus driver and tour guide and did a great job of keeping us entertained during the 3 hour tour.

We started at Opryland then visited downtown Nashville before seeing where some of the music stars live in the towns south of Nashville.

Photos from the old train station in downtown Nashville that has
been converted into a hotel.

After the tour finished we returned to downtown Nashville to have lunch at The Acme Feed and Seed. The Acme Feed and Seed in an old store that Alan Jackson has bought an turned into a restaurant that has live music in the evenings.

Today's Acme as a bar/restaurant

Original Acme Feed and Seed Company
Several of us took a tour of the Ryman Auditorium which is where the Grand Old Opry was performed from 1943 until the 1970's when it moved out to Opryland. Ryman Auditorium was originally built as a church building and named after Thomas Ryman who donated the money to construct the building. Captain Ryman made his money in the riverboat business and was later in life was "converted" during a revival by Rev. Jones in Nashville. After Captain Ryman's death the church was renamed in his honor.

Mal and Chuck inside the Ryman Auditorium

Stage outfits for Minnie Pearl, Bill Monroe and Hank Williams

Stage outfits for Porter Waggoner and Loretta Lynn

Stage outfit for Marty Robbins

The "Man in Black" - Johnny Cash

Mal and Fran at the Ryman
We also stopped in several bars for a few minutes each to listen to live music along the streets in downtown Nashville.

Connie and Mike in front of B.B. King's

Fran and Connie in front of The Wild Horse Saloon
On Saturday all of us went to Franklin Tennessee to do a Segway Tour of the city. Franklin is an old city in Tennessee that was the site of a very bloody battle during the Civil War. After the segway tour was finished we ate lunch and listen to some bluegrass music that was being played at a festival in downtown Franklin. We then made a visit to the Carnton Plantation and Confederate Cemetery that is located on the property. The McGavock family donated land for the cemetery so that Confederate soldiers who died in the Battle of Franklin could be buried there.

Carnton Plantation

We ended the day by having dinner with Fran and Mal at Jonathan's Grille in Mt. Juliet.

On Sunday Mal and Fran came out to the Duchess for a visit and to spend the night with us before heading out to Ohio where Fran's brother and sister live. This is the first time we have had anyone spend the night with us in the motor home.

Mike and Mal enjoying the shade outside the Duchess
We thoroughly enjoyed the few days we were able to spend with Fran and Mal and get caught up on our lives since our last visit with them in 2014.

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