I'm in Nashville having the absolute time of my life as an intern at the Country Music Association. It's a non-profit that fundraises money for Nashville's metro school music programs with the summer CMA Fest....and then they throw the CMA Awards in their downtime during the Fall/Winter. (No big deal, right?) It's a pretty humble company considering their magnitude in the industry, but then again, so is Nash in general.
It's hands-down, the best place ever to me. People here are real life Hannah Montanas. They live double lives and it's so incredibly refreshing. During the weekends they bale hay and build barns on their farms and then they turn into kick-A music executives during the week. To the people that say you can't have it all....I beg to differ.
Anyways, I've been pining to "be" here ever since I visited my brother Trent a few years back. I know it probably sounds so hokey but I liken the feeling I had then to stomach butterflies intermingled with the sound of an angelic choir calling my name....it also was suddenly a very bright day. Not really...but kinda. It was weird.
I applied as a transfer student to a university here but decided I couldn't afford it. So a summer internship was my plan B. And the event that transpired next went something like this:
(On the phone with Cami)
Me: "Ya, I'm so glad you're loving that event design class you are in, Cam! It's so rad that it's networked you with all these great planners and that at this rate you'll totally be doing what you want to do in like, four months. So like...do you want to just drop it all and come with me to Nashville?"
Cami: "Nashville? Yup. When are we leaving??"
And just like that, I had my best (and longest) college friend and role model as my Nash partner in crime. She dropped her entire life, just for me!
...... I hope you are ready now for a bomb of photos....
It's the perfect combination of big city and small town feel...no?
Any Nashville tour wouldn't be complete without a Southern plantation. This one happens to be the Belle Meade Mansion. Almost all of the horses that compete in the Kentucky Derby have bloodlines that trace back here (even Seabiscuit and The Secretariat)!
Tennessee is also home to the South's largest Amish community. Obviously Cami and I had to appease our curiosity and visit. I found it all so fascinating and it was one of my favorite adventures to date. We visited lots of their home-shops and almost bought a puppy. Instead we bought goldfish and named them after our two Amish friends we made that day, Anna and Enos Gingrich.
Sadly, Enos Gingrich was only with us two days...
Also extremely exciting was the day we got to attend Luke Bryan's Platinum party for Tailgates and Tanlines. In attendance were his publicists, managers, songwriters, family....and then us. Hahaha. It's no secret that Luke is probably one of the sexiest men to walk this earth....but really. The boy can shake it like a Country Girl. Ow ow! CMT wrote an article about it that summed it up perfectly here.
This was the morning I bought Justin Bieber tickets at 10 am PST exactly. It was so exhilarating! I thought they went on sale the day before and called my mom in a panic....it was oddly familiar to the night I made my entire family stay up until midnight because I thought High School Musical 3 went on sale at Walmart.
.....But if JB's Never Say Never movie taught me anything, it was that his concerts sell out in like 21 minutes!
Let's jump a state: Atlanta, Georgia. I've wanted to visit there for soooo long. Cami and I went on a walk and realized that the next day was the start of Memorial Day weekend. We jumped in a car the next morning and were on our way. We were fairly proud of our spontaneity.
Our first stop in ATL (I feel like a local saying that) was a tour of the Braves Stadium. It was perfect timing because there was a game that afternoon so Scotty McCreery was doing a soundcheck. We got a free concert, though we would have gladly bought tickets for the game if we could have. ;)
We found that my mom's friend Dale Murphy was EVERYWHERE.
The CNN tour was insane. We couldn't take pictures in all of the really cool, interactive parts (like seeing Soledad O'Brien filming on set)....but by the end I was feeling and using news industry lingo like Rachel McAdams on the movie Morning Glory. (That's my favorite girl empowerment movie, btw.)
Did you know Atlanta is home to Coca Cola? I didn't either. We visited the World of Coke Museum and got to taste Coca Cola products from every country in the world. I had an EXTREME sugar crash about thirty minutes after.... I only semi-regretted it all in the 2573% humidity outside walking to the car.
It's like feeling engulfed in an oven.
And I can still feel the sweat collecting on my forehead.
Maybe bangs weren't the best idea?
Let's jump to another state: Huntsville, Alabama. We made the trek down with my cousin Benji to visit my second cousins. They are the most welcoming and kind people I've ever met....and I can't wait to go back to visit! Next time it will be a longer stay where we actually have time to go in the NASA space museum, too.
I know you are probably getting sick of this post...I am too. I just have to close with the best week of my life thus far. It started with the CMT Awards. We were seat fillers...which could have been semi-cool or reallyyy cool depending on where you got placed. I got placed in Section 115, the section above where all the Country royalty sat. I got to watch up close their expressions when they were announced a winner....I got to watch how sweet Mike Fisher treated his babe of a wife - Carrie Underwood....I got to watch how every artist made a point to chat with Luke Bryan (I guess he's their favorite too)...I even got to experience how they all spend the entire show standing and talking to each other, but then make sure to sit down in their seats five seconds before the camera is scheduled to film them clapping. So in my case, being a seat filler was reallyyy cool...and I felt for the seat fillers put in the nosebleeds.
The next day was the start of the FESTivities. Four days of utter exhaustion and excitement. I would like to divulge more...but I have a scene from The Hills where an intern prospect gets fired for tweeting about her interview replaying through my head. So ya. Like I said, best week of my life!
Oh ya, Jessica and I (another intern) are obsessed with this App. FACE JUGGLER. Soooo funny.
And that was my post encore, friends. Goodnight!