Getting There

Nashville Travel Blog

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Paschal's in the Atlanta Airport

Once again I did the early morning thing, wanting to arrive in Nashville as early as I possibly could so I would have time to just sit with family and talk, in preparation for the big dinner on Thanksgiving. Unfortunately, the "early morning thing," meant getting up at 4:00 AM in order to get to the airport on time. The result of that was that I inevitably forgot something -- my cell phone. I did not discover it was missing until I was in the Norfolk Airport, and by that time it was too late to go back and get it.

Going through security in Norfolk I witnessed an unexpected and strange thing. The woman directly in front of me in the line had no ID -- none -- no driver's license, no government ID, no student ID, no credit card, nothing.

I have assumed that as a result of the heightened security following 9/11 no one could fly without some form of ID, but this woman was trying. The first TSA agent called a second agent over; he went through the same questions getting the same answers as the first agent while the line steadily grew. The second agent called a supervisor over, who repeated he questions for the third time getting the same answers. Noticing how long the line was, the TSA supervisor pulled the woman to the side and told the rest of us to go ahead. I was sure that this would be the last I saw of this particular woman, so you can imagine my surprise when I saw her again, boarding the same plane to Atlanta that I was boarding. I have no idea how the TSA decided to pass her through. All I could think of was "so much for heightened security."

We landed in Atlanta a little before 8:00 AM.

Nashville Ruby Tuesday's
I made my way from the international concourse, where we landed, to the B concourse for my flight to Nashville. Starving by now, I stopped at Paschal's for a traditional southern breakfast of scrambled eggs, sausage, biscuits, and grits. Delicious.

My flight to Nashville brought another surprising situation. I boarded the plane and discovered that my seatmates were brothers, aged 5 and 7. I initially thought nothing about this, and pulled out the book I brought to read on the plane, Ridiculous, David Kaufman's biography of playwright/actor Charles Ludlam. My seatmates, however, had other ideas. They wanted to talk. So I learned that they were going to Nashville to visit family for Thanksgiving and they were excited by the prospect. I settled in and listened to the boys talk about themselves, their anticipation for the trip, and their family -- and suddenly one of them called out "Hi Dad" as a man walked up. Their parents, it seems, were flying in first class while the kids were back in coach. How weird I thought to myself. What kind of parent lets such young kids fly on a plane full of strangers by themselves while the parents sat in first class? It was an eye-opener.

Once we landed -- and I told my seatmates good-bye -- I had to find a pay phone to call my brother-in-law to come and get me. Fortunately, there were payphones near the baggage carousels in Nashville's airport, so making that call was easy. My brother-in-law suggested that I stay inside the terminal for a few minutes since it was very cold in Nashville (below 30); he told me to be on the look-out for my sister's red car. I did as he suggested -- and then began looking for every red car that approached the pick-up area. The only red car that approached was driven by an elderly African American woman, clearly not my brother-in-law. My wait outside in the cold took much longer than it should have -- when suddenly a silver car pulled up and honked; my brother-in-law's Prius. It turned out that my sister's car would not start and they tried to call me to let me know that they were running late and had changed cars, but had only gotten my voice mail. The price for forgetting my phone.

After dropping my bags at their house (and meeting their new dog, Tucker, a beautiful and affectionate King Charles Cavalier Spaniel, who decided that I was his new best friend), we headed off to grab some lunch at Ruby Tuesday's, a restaurant I had not been to in years. We shared an appetizer of tempura green beans before we all headed to the salad bar. In honesty, I had forgotten how much I enjoyed Ruby Tuesday's.

After lunch, it was time to pick up the fixings for tomorrow's Thanksgiving dinner.

It was not an exciting day, but it was what I wanted.

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Paschals in the Atlanta Airport
Paschal's in the Atlanta Airport
Nashville Ruby Tuesdays
Nashville Ruby Tuesday's
photo by: diisha392