Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 622

My Americanisms

The other day I emailed my British chum to ask for her ‘cell phone number’. How she must have laughed. ‘Of course, she means ‘mobile phone’, silly thing with her funny Americanisms,’ thought she.

This will happen a lot when I get back to the UK, so I wrote a list of all the things I apologise in advance for saying when I get back home and here is that list, as featured on top expat site Lost in the Pond

That's me!

That’s me!

Enjoy, and, er, sorry! 😉

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Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 621

The school tie

Oh lordy, I’ve found out that young Mr McGill definitely does have to wear a school tie to his new junior school in Englandland.

This is going to severely test my parenting skills.

My question is this: can the tie be on elastic? That would save us a billion seconds every morning and for him at PE time. The answer, I found out, is no, it is not allowed to be on elastic. Are they having a laugh? Oh my gawd, my British reserve might pop at this juncture!

Despite this tie issue (yes, I’m sure it will be fine!), and however much I love the ‘dress in whatever you want’ for school (including a self-designed ‘Fart Man’ t-shirt 😉 ), I am a big advocate of school uniforms cos it makes sense, no? I’ve heard many rightful rants from parents, of young ladies especially, who are having problems with the dress code at school here in Howard County.

School uniforms UK style

School uniforms UK style

As I once said to my boss at Bath University Students’ Union when she commented negatively on what I was wearing, I replied: ‘It’s not what I’m wearing, it’s the way I wear it that you don’t like.’

The stress of repatriation

I’m not going to lie, heading back home with endless To Do lists is very stressful. That is why I have booked in some stress-reliving pool-watching time at my friend’s house this afternoon, because I am kind and selfless like that 😉

Anyhoo, from sorting it all out this end, to making sure things are progressing the other end, it can make your British expat head swirl!

repat

Four more days of school

Harry has four days left in his American school. Don’t tell anyone, but I am really, really glad this bit is over. This is the bit of our expat journey that has been the biggest struggle for all of us. No more Common Core Math! Yeehah to that sucker! No more ‘criss cross apple sauce’! I have no idea what they say in England nowadays, but I know it won’t be that! No more recess time! Just playtime (and more of it!).

Common-Core-cropped

I’ll be writing a guest post for Expat Child about our US school experiences shortly, so I’ll let it all rip then, folks! (Sure, some of it’s been a joy, but it’s also been very, very different and not always in a easy way!)

Gotta go pack some boxes and wotnot.

Peace out!

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Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 620

In America we call this….

My American friends love hearing all the different words we use for various things. You know, like ‘pavement’ and ‘mobile phone’. However, recently I met a chap who loved to tease my Britishness in the USA as a foreigner. We did a race together this weekend with a bunch of friends and his banter went like this…

[Having a picture taken before the race]

‘Claire, in America, we call this a PHOTOGRAPH.’

[Whilst we are in the race]

‘Claire, in America, we call this RUNNING.’

It made me laugh and made me realise how we do spell out stuff for other folks who don’t always speak the same language.

In America they call this 'the finish line' ;)

In America they call this ‘the finish line’ 😉

My husband’s accent

Oh, how many times Americans have told me that my hubby’s British/Cockney accent is hard to understand. It’s not just the accent, it’s the use of colloquialisms, and on the phone it’s even harder to interpret. They told me they have to really concentrate on what he’s saying and try to lip read him if they are one to one. Bless his little Cockney socks.

Alwight geezer.

Alwight geezer.

Yard Sale

Yes, America, we’re packing up and getting rid of stuff, so this weekend I’m taking on the American Yard Sale. I’m not sure if it’s woohoo or argh! Whatever happens, the stuff has to go cos there is no room for it in our iddybiddy British house!

Posted in American, American customs, blogging, Britain, British, British American differences, expat | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 619

A Brit’s Midnight Musings on the American Dream

It’s been so interesting to read everyone’s comments on the American Dream from my previous blog this week. I am so very curious about it. It fascinates me muchly since I never really thought about it in any way shape or form before I arrived in the USA. Honestly, I just heard the phrase back in Blighty and it never really registered with me until I started living with Uncle Sam (note, I have not moved out of the family home and moved in with my ‘uncle’, I am simply referencing the US0fA in one of my favourite ways!).

LivingtheDreamCircle

The concept of it all fascinates me. A discussion I had about it yesterday intrigued me when an American co-worker suggested that ‘it’s a bit like heaven; everyone has different ideas and ideals about it. It doesn’t exist in one form.’

So I wanted to share with you my thoughts, questions and musings about the American Dream that I had last night at midnight. They might not be coherent and they are in no particular order. They’re just comments and questions that popped into my mind, and yes, I wrote them down (as Dr Oz suggested so that they didn’t keep my awake any longer!).

If anyone has any answers or comments or suggestions, feel free to share! None of this reflection or cogitation is meant to offend or criticise; these are simply the bunch of thoughts that whizzed around in my little British head at midnight. You know, as it does.

  • What does it actually mean and how is it defined?
  • How is it different for different races, genders and creeds?
  • Has the American Dream changed over time and does it still exist?
  • How many versions of the dream are there that have been ‘logged’?
  • Is it one dream for everyone or are there a million squillion different versions?
  • How does the American Dream function and impact on individuals and society culturally, socially, psychologically, philosophically, anthropologically and spiritually?
  • How is success defined in the dream?
  • Is there a British dream? Or do we dare not dream for fear or losing our ability to reason and rationalize everything in our very stoic British way?
  • What if you don’t achieve the dream?
  • Is the dream just American or is there a universal dream or has the world adopted a version of the American dream
  • Are those who have achieved their dream content or do they wish for more?
  • When does the dream jeopardize others and the planet and when do we allow our lives to be driven by the quest for the dream.
  • Is it really attainable?
  • Do we set ourselves up to fail?
  • Is one person’s dream is another person’s nightmare?
  • Is real happiness achieved with the dream or does is mask other fears and areas of life
  • Who coined the phrase American Dream?
  • Can we log our dreams and set ourselves goals like in an American Dream Book? 😉

So, that’s what I contemplated last night.

And for the record, I don’t know if I have an American Dream. I just have my dream. Although, to be honest, after this kept me awake last night I don’t think I dreamt at all!

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My final note on this is something that I read on the Library of Congress’s website:

‘James Truslow Adams, in his book The Epic of America, which was written in 1931, stated that the American dream is “that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement. It is a difficult dream for the European upper classes to interpret adequately, and too many of us ourselves have grown weary and mistrustful of it. It is not a dream of motor cars and high wages merely, but a dream of social order in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are innately capable, and be recognized by others for what they are, regardless of the fortuitous circumstances of birth or position.” (p.214-215)

The authors of the United States’ Declaration of Independence held certain truths to be self-evident: that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” Might this sentiment be considered the foundation of the American Dream?

Were homesteaders who left the big cities of the east to find happiness and their piece of land in the unknown wilderness pursuing these inalienable Rights? Were the immigrants who came to the United States looking for their bit of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, their Dream? And what did the desire of the veteran of World War II – to settle down, to have a home, a car and a family – tell us about this evolving Dream? Is the American Dream attainable by all Americans?

Some say, that the American Dream has become the pursuit of material prosperity – that people work more hours to get bigger cars, fancier homes, the fruits of prosperity for their families – but have less time to enjoy their prosperity. Others say that the American Dream is beyond the grasp of the working poor who must work two jobs to insure their family’s survival. Yet others look toward a new American Dream with less focus on financial gain and more emphasis on living a simple, fulfilling life.

Thomas Wolfe said, “…to every man, regardless of his birth, his shining, golden opportunity ….the right to live, to work, to be himself, and to become whatever thing his manhood and his vision can combine to make him.”

Is this your American Dream?’

americandream

So, that’s it. I just wanted to share that with you so you might want to pootle off and have your own set of musings on it all. You know, like when you’re supposed to be at work and then you drift off and start contemplating the meaning of life and wot not. It appears from this Library of Congress note that the suggestion is that everyone has their own interpretation of the American Dream.

I like this idea and I shall take it away with me for more midnight musings, or perhaps over a nice cup of tea 🙂

Peace! And keep on dreaming!

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Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 618

Searching for bodies and tutoring kids

Well that’s a heading for a blog I never imagined writing!

Today was one of those eclectic, ‘only in America’ days today.

Firstly, I went to a photoshoot for a Learning Center/Centre in Crofton MD for their new prospectus. My role for the shoot was as a tutor of the school for little kids and big kids.

I took my British PR clothes because that is what I have and it’s all pretty cool and funky and smart and sassy. But, evidently, not appropriate for an American education center’s tutor to wear. With immediate effect my wardrobe was sent flying to the floor, and they promptly rushed about to find me the worst beige ensemble I have ever placed on my body. Ever. I mean – BEIGE!

Look how beige and 'appropriate' I am! And so uncomfortable! ;)

Look how beige and ‘appropriate’ I am! And so uncomfortable! 😉

And, yes, another Dr Oz stylie jacket to cover my shoulders and arms (blog reminder about THAT incident here!). Sigh. It was deemed appropriate for the photoshoot and everyone breathed a sigh of relief that this mischievous Brit had not wrecked their entire shoot as Bad Teacher’s Cameron Diaz – well, not quite, but I think I might as well have! 😉

Yeah, I think I might have been pushing my luck with looking like that.....

Yeah, I think I might have been pushing my luck with looking like that…..

I tutored the kids for the camera, actually giving one of the kids a real geography lesson about the UK, Great Britain and Europe. Naturally, I started with ‘and here’s LONDON’ so that they could get their bearings…. 😉

Second up, I spent the afternoon being an extra for the show Nightmare Next Door which airs on the Investigation Discovery Channel. It was a super fun vibe on set today, albeit we were hunting for dead bodies in the Patapsco State Park.

Howdy doody!

Howdy doody!

I have to reel off a few things about being an extra on set today that tickled me….

1. Four out of the six people who asked me where I’m from thought I was from Australia. Go figure.

2. When I told a chap I was from Bath, England, he said he didn’t know it. I told him it was a Roman city. He asked if everyone walked around with swords and helmets. I do believe he was joking!

3. It is June and it was frigging cold out there in the woods and we were supposed to look hot. We may not have conveyed that terribly well!

4. These extra folk are gold. They’re like ‘Ooh, I recognise you from when we were on….[insert House of Cards, VEEP, another Investigation Discovery show] together’ and then we all share our Kevin Spacey / Robin Wright / Julia Louis Dreyfus stories and the time we spoke a line or got good face time on the show and discuss shoots with reference to what the crew ordered for lunch (for instance ‘Oh that was the day we got Chipotle – that was a good day 🙂 ‘. Love this stuff! On set as an extra is a little community all of its own and it’s pretty special.

The extras just hanging, waiting for our sheriff briefing!

The extras just hanging, waiting for our sheriff briefing!

Besties on set!

Besties on set!

In our search gear :)

In our search gear 🙂

5. Lots of people try and do the British accent. I always tell them to practice the word ‘brilliant’ and I can see them trying when they’re off camera. Bless their hearts!

And that was my American day today.

#amazeballs

Posted in American, expat, expat life, Travel, UK | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 617

Rain, rain UK stylie

When it rains in Americaland, like it is doing today for a change (it’s been sweltering this past week!), people do say to me ‘it must be just like being back in England’. Yes, I can confirm that stereotype is true! I felt that today!

The American Dream

This weekend I was sitting at the community pool here in Columbia MD, just watching. I was watching all the folks who live here (in one of the top zipcodes in the USA), saying hi to them because they know me from my work, the community and school, and I began wondering what they would be doing with their lives if I returned from the UK again in three years to this very same place. Would they be doing the exact same thing? Would the wives be doing the school run, then hitting the gym, then having lunch, then running some errands, then grabbing a Starbucks and a quick pedicure before returning to do the school pick up and then ferry the kids to their evening sports events? I say this because this happens a lot in my part of the world, and I see it every day. Will it be any different in three years’ time?

Is this a moment of the American Dream?

Is this a moment of the American Dream?

And I began to wonder if this was the actual American Dream, or at least one of them, that I was witnessing in front of my very eyes. If this, with the pools and the schools, and the big houses and the cars and the handbags, was their American Dream fulfilled. I don’t the answer, but I suspect for many it is.

And all of a sudden I felt a little weary and a little anxious and very claustrophobic. If this is it, I’m not sure it’s my dream at all. I’m guessing for many this is their dream: they have achieved and made it.

And I then realised this is the perfect time for me to be returning to the UK, because, as much as I have loved my life here, and all the fun and wonder that it has given me, I could not live in this Truman Show-like American Dream World for much longer. This is not my dream; I feel like I’m in a load of other people’s dreams. Nice as it is, I feel an urge to break free.

If this life is those folks’ dream fulfilled, then good for them (not meant in a British sarcastic way!). I’m not knocking their choices or their journeys or their hard work, but for me all the apparent safety and comfort of this particular American Dream leaves me wishing and wanting a different adventure, and so at that very moment, staring at the pool and the blue skies, with the sun on my face, I realised that it is time for me to leave America and return to the UK, and to chase my own hopes and dreams. My expat time is up.

americandream

America has given me fantastic opportunities and I’ve met amazing people, but it can’t go on forever, and so I like to think I’ll be leaving on a high. I’m curious as to what all those folks will be doing in three years’ time and I wonder if they harbour other aspirations and dreams, or if they’re content with this. I shall certainly pop back to see 🙂

I asked a few blog readers what they thought defined the American Dream and what it meant to them.

V: Aspiration – starting from nothing, studying or working hard and becoming successful in whatever field you choose (success being to me a nice home, family, good career or position in society and the lifestyle to match.)

A: It’s different for everyone, but I think it has centered for far too long on materialism and wealth in society. We have created a charade, a myth, a facade and everyone thinks that’s the dream. There is a cookie-cutter brand of happy moms, who are actually on the gin at home; smiley kids with perfect teeth, who are actually secret meth heads and lost their virginity rings a while ago; and dads who work longer than they have to just so they don’t have to go home. It’s not a dream: it’s a self-perpetuating nightmare and one day we’ll wake up and realise it’s a load of BS. And, of course, for many the dream we are sold is unattainable. Does this mean they’ve failed at their one chance at life? That’s a sad thought.

T: The dream is a self-fulfilling prophecy that you are responsible for. Whether it be workplace success, travel, homelife or setting your long term goals, the American dream can be whatever you want it to be, as long as you work hard for it. Are we the land of the free though? I’m not always sure about that one.

This is what the American Dream is defined as if you tap it into Google:

The ideal that every US citizen should have an equal opportunity to achieve success and prosperity through hard work, determination, and initiative.

“He could achieve the American dream only by hard work”

US of A: The land of dreams....

US of A: The land of dreams….

One of my favorite reads about this topic is this blog. I’d be interested in your thoughts on the American Dream – feel free to add your comments on the blog!

Posted in American, American customs, American dream, British, British American differences, expats, Travel, UK, USA | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 615

Bye Bye Blog Party
Well, folks, it’s back to afternoon teas, going ‘to the loo’, driving on the left and making innuendos without having to a) apologise or b) explain them as I depart the wonderful haven that is Howard County after three magical years to return to Jolly Old England in just 10 weeks’ time.
Englishness!

Englishness!

Oh, how I’ve loved the spirit of Columbia and Ellicott City! How I’ve adored the people I’ve met who have enriched my life! And particularly, how I’ve enjoyed being part of this illustrious, witty, caring, and intelligent blogging community. It’s been a privilege to be part of something so special. Without my blog and the blogging community’s receptiveness to it much of my fulfilling and amusing, wonderful and bemusing life would not have taken place, so I want to use this blog post to thank them from the bottom of my British heart (yes, we Brits do have them – it’s just the stiff upper lip that masks it!). These folks helped make my experience here truly the best of my life yet.
Me and Bill, we're happy bloggers

Me and Bill, we’re happy bloggers

To mark the end of my blogging ‘career’ in Howard County, I’m teaming up with some other fierce, feisty and fun women whom I very much respect in the community and blogging scene and we’re having a party! Hosted by HoCo bloggers the UK Desperate Housewife USA (that’s me!), Howard County Moms (Kris Schneider), Life & How to Live It (Mickey Gomez) and Is This Thing On? (Candace Dodson Reed), we are women who love Howard County and we’ve have come together to host a summer celebration of HoCo at Portalli’s in Ellicott City. This will also be my chance to thank them all!
Bye bye #hocomd!

Bye bye #hocomd!

Fun times in Howard County!

Fun times in Howard County!

I take away so many memories and encounters that will shape me for the next part of my journey. Don’t forget I’ll be blogging back in the UK about what life is like returning as an expat from the USA, so keep in touch with me via my new British twitter handle @ClaireBMcGill, or via my From America to England Facebook page  and at my new blog From America to England.

In the meantime, let’s make these last 10 weeks rock! #somuchtodo!;)

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Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 614

A Desperate Desperate Housewife in Washington

This morning I got up at 515am to go down to DC to appear on the Good Morning Washington show, presenting a segment about insomnia and all the fabulous new products out there to promote healthy sleep. It’s slightly ironic that I did this, since I am a terrible sleeper and probably only got about 4 hours sleep prior to the show.

Anyway, it went super well and I even got to say the name of this very blog on the show, which is awesomeballs! You can view the segment here (tho it’s not great sound for some reason!)

Claire Bolden McGill IMG_1341 IMG_1342But as usual, when I go down to DC, it all got a bit desperate as I tried to find my way out of the city. I always get effing lost and at one point I really was a desperate Desperate Housewife in Washington! How come I take one way into the city and another way out? I can never figure it out, and neither can my frigging Sat Nav! But, I made it back to Columbia – hoorah!

My fave mailbox

I don’t think this USA mailbox needs any words except one – ‘kitsch’. I love this amazing thing in Howard County, MD!

mailbox

My mother will probably be blushing as she reads this, but it has to be told! When my parents came to stay the other week, my mum had to go and post and letter in a USA mailbox and could she find the handle to pull down the opening and post in the letter? Could she heck! It’s not like putting a letter through the British red post box, let it be known! (FYI, she managed it in the end! 😉 )

Having my parents here in America is always an interesting and fascinating juxtaposition of Britishness in America-land.

Kent Island, MD

There is an idyllic place in Maryland that we had not frequented before. To get there, though, you have to go over the ruddy Bay Bridge which I hate, but it’s worth it!

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Mrs Doubtfire or me?!

I got told an interesting tale at the weekend by a couple of lovely #hocohomos whom I’ve been very good friends with for a couple of years now here in Howard County (read about when we met up here!)

When I first got invited out by one of the group who had been reading my blog, apparently the other guys were not too keen to spend time with a dull ‘British housewife’. They told me they were expecting some boring old Mrs Doubtfire character and up popped me, much to their relief!

Mrs Doubtfire I ain’t! 😉

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Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 613

Nashville and Memphis

Second up – Memphis

It was hard for Memphis to live up to Nashville. Many people expressed preference for one over the other. Nashville is cool and funky and I liked keeping it country. Memphis is emotional; so much history and diversity and soul. Don’t ask me which I prefer; I love ’em both in different ways.

Anyhoo, Beale St is a place! What the heckythump?! It’s a crazy place, with spontaneous street dancing, blues and soul booming out of the bars, and an explosion of drinking folk up and down the pedestrianised road. It got a bit much even for me (I know – duh?!). Thank Gawd for the MOJO bus tour which took us around Memphis and shared the musical history and sights and sounds of the blues city.

Beale St

Beale St

Drinkiepoos in Beale St

Drinkiepoos in Beale St

Now, Elvis. I think I first came across Elvis one Saturday or Sunday afternoon when I was about 9 or 10 years old and probably supposed to be doing something else at home, but turned on the TV instead, and Elvis in Blue Hawaii was on, and I was like ‘Who the hell is he? He’s gorgeous!’ Not having Google then, I must have found out about him somehow by asking someone. Anyway, much of Elvis’s mainstream hits dotted in and out of my life, until one day I heard him laughing during a recording of Are You Lonesome Tonight and I thought to myself that there was something far deeper than the Fat Elvis images in all his jewels that was presented during the Vegas years and the totally Gorgeous Elvis that was on screen from the early years. I mean, before that I thought The Fine Young Cannibals had had the first hit with Suspicous Minds. Oh the shame!

I heart Elvis!

I heart Elvis!

But……I didn’t know the half of it until I toured Graceland (which had no Fat Elvis pictures on show btw!). What a talented, lovely, happy, generous, fun, dude. I get why people love him so much. And Graceland – it’s no bigger than some of the McMansions here in Columbia, MD. But inside?! Wowsers!

Glorious Graceland

The music room

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The pool room

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The Jungle Room

There is much to do and see in Memphis, including the world-famous Sun Studios. How many famous peeps have walked through that place?! My favourite quote of the tour is from producer Sam Phillips: ‘Without the cooperation of total resentment on the part of the parents, Rock ‘n’ Roll would have had a rougher time makin’ it.’ Love that quote! I’m sure I would have been a screaming rock’n’roll gal back in the day :).

Rockin'!

Rockin’!

Being so near to both Arkansas and Mississippi it seemed rude not to take a quick visit to both states. To be honest, they felt pretty much the same as Tennessee! My issue with Arkansas is the frigging spelling. I mean, honestly, it’s an S – it should be a W!!!! I understand British places like Loughborough are tough to pronounce, but when I say Arkansas out loud the right way, I’ll say it the wrong way in my head with a pronounced S at the end ;). I even wrote out a W to put at the end of a state line sign along the road had we seen one.

We had fried chicken in Mississippi and went to a Waffle House in ArkansaW (don’t arrest me!) Yes, that’s right folks, allegedly if you mispronounce Arkansas (Ar-kan-saw) you’re in for a fine or jail time. Anyway, a Waffle House?! Why? you might ask! Well, some of my American friends couldn’t believe I hadn’t been to one yet in my three years here. For the record, it will be my last time!

Finally, Memphis is a place of history and proud champion of civil rights, and being right there at the Lorraine Motel where Dr Martin Luther King was shot outside Room 306 was both thought-provoking and hauntingly moving. I am so very glad we went there, as well as to the Slave Haven based in the Memphis suburbs. They are visitor must-sees.

Thought provoking

Thought provoking

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Room 307, connected to Room 306 where MLK stayed

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Room 306 from James Earl Ray’s viewpoint

This trip was about learning stuff. American stuff. American music and American history, and this UK expat has learned a whole lot of stuff she never knew before. Rock on, Nashville and Memphis.

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Desperate English Housewife in Washington, chapter 612

Nashville & Memphis

First up – Nashville

Where’s a Daisy Duke-wearing, cowboy boot-wearing UK Desperate Housewife going to go when there is a child-free long weekend on offer? Only Nashville of course! And Memphis, second of course!

Essential packing

Essential packing

Woohoo! Roadtrip!

Woohoo! Roadtrip!

I like a bit of Johnny Cash. In fact, I used to listen to San Quentin in my boarding school common room, circa 1987. That’s how far-reaching The Man in Black is.

Nashville meant these things to me: music, Honky Tonk Row and, er, wearing my beloved UK Desperate Housewife boots which are from none other than Nashville its very self.

If you want to listen to country music and bluegrass and to visit Music City’s Grand Ole Opry in hope of catching The Next Big Thing or an old country celeb, then this place is for you.

Behind legendary Tootsies!

Behind legendary Tootsies!

Being a Brit in Nashville, I chanced upon a lot of other Brits, cos there are a lot of British country fans out there. You could generally hear them first because after a song they would shout ‘lovely’ or ‘very good’ and clap enthusiastically, but not necessarily whoop or cheer like the other [American folk].

I wanted to learn stuff in Nashville. I did. I learned a lot about Johnny Cash, whom I now respect even more. I learned stuff about Kenny Rogers, and now see him as more than a beard and chickens and Islands in the Stream with Dolly. The Country Music Hall of Fame is totally brillopads! I feel utterly ‘countrified’ 😉

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I wanted to see some bluegrass being performed. I did. I don’t know who the band was, but they were super popular and I loved them as much as everyone else. It made me want to watch Oh Brother Where Art Thou again.

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I wanted to be part of the Grand Ole Opry. I was (not on stage tho!) It was amazeballs, and I totally love a bit of fiddling! Watch out for this name: Ashley Clark. He’s wicked with a fiddle (and the gals love him!). And there was some dude called Charles Esten from the TV show Nashville, who everyone was was very excited about, but I don’t watch it so I had no idea, but he was very talented and charming nonetheless!

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Ashley Clark!

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I wanted to get on down at one of the honky tonks. I did just that! Live music bars are easy to find on Broadway, Printers Alley and 2nd Avenue. Some top venue picks include The Bluebird Cafe, Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge and Robert’s Western World. Dancing on the bar? Yes sireeeee!

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Printer’s Alley

I was rather too excited about the Dukes of Hazzard museum at Cooter’s Place. I was right to be so! Ah, Daisy Duke, my heroine in short shorts 🙂 .

Woohoo! My childhood fave!

Woohoo! My childhood fave!

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Check those Daisy Dukes out!

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Daisy’s cart

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

My heroine!

BB King died on the day we were there, so it felt only natural to go hang out with King’s house band for lunch. I’m glad we did.

In honour of the legendary BB King

In honour of the legendary BB King

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Next up: Memphis, blues, soul and Beale St.

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