I left New Orleans just a little before 11 o’clock this morning (later than my intended 10 o’clock departure, but right on time with my expectations).
Total driving time to Nashville was almost exactly 8 hours, though this was partially due to missing an exit and driving for about 15 minutes in the wrong direction. Oops. Oh well, all part of the road trip experience. If that is the worst mistake I make all week, it’ll be a damn smooth trip. Of course, that won’t be the worst mistake I make all week.
I’m spending 2 nights in Nashville. For tonight, my first, I drove around downtown where I used to work, then back into the neighborhood I used to live in (which is mostly unchanged) and then to the West End to get dinner and a beer. From there I met up with an old coworker for some drinks in Printer’s Alley. This wasn’t a usual hangout during my year, but apparently it has become a regular post-shift spot for many of my former cohorts.
Because I left New Orleans with the ever so slight hint of a hangover, I took it easy tonight and devoted my time to catching up. Another former coworker came in a little later and sat down next to us. For about half an hour, he talked to a friend in the seat next to him without acknowledging me. It wasn’t until that other friend left that he turned and, with some embarrassment, realized who I was. What can I say, I don’t have a memorable face.
Actually, I imagine he was practicing the long held server tradition of ignoring everyone else once you clock out. When you spend your whole shift pretending to care about absolute strangers, the last thing you want to do is exhaust more energy on even more strangers while unwinding with a drink.
Today, I’ll meet up with more of my old friends from Nashville. Some of them I’ve seen since I left, most I haven’t seen since my farewell party almost exactly 2 years ago.
And then the next day, I’ll travel to Charlotte. Between that, hopefully I’ll find a chance to post again. Of course, you can always keep up with my progress via Twitter if you’re into that sort of thing. Well, until I write again,