Posts Tagged ‘Bristol TN’

An Unexpected Guest

2016-07-08 13.15.53If you’re friends with me on Facebook, you may have seen my post two weeks ago about the gentleman who came to my home that Sunday afternoon, telling me it was his childhood home. The visit was quite interesting and surreal. Here’s what happened, if you didn’t see the original FB post:

As Sam and I pulled up to the house after church, a car stopped out front, and a man approached us. He told us that he had grown up in this house and hadn’t been back to see it since he was a teenager. I offered to let him inside to see it, and the excitement on his face at seeing his childhood home was contagious. The man turned out to be Mitch Daniels, former governor of Indiana and current president of Purdue University. He was with Brian and Donna Noland. (Brian is the president of ETSU.)¬†They were all very kind, and I’m glad we had the opportunity to meet them.

While he was in our home, Mr. Daniels asked for my name and address so that he could send me a card upon his arrival back home. This past Friday, I received a package from him in which was a beautiful blanket from Purdue University. There was also a copy of a photo taken by Donna Noland of Mr. Daniels, Sam and myself standing on the front porch (see upper left corner). Included in the package was also a handwritten note from Mr. Daniels thanking us for allowing him to see inside his old home.

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The note says: “Dear Suzanne, Thank you for your kindness in allowing a stranger to accost you last week, and then to permit him a look at the first home he remembers living in, six decades ago. My trip to Bristol was a truly joyful experience from end to end, but the highlight by far was 100 Neal Drive, and meeting you and Sam. Thans again for your hospitality; I guess I should have expected it from a Hoosier! Best wishes, Mitch Daniels”

Here is a photo of the gorgeous blanket:

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Iris DeMent

Iris DeMentFifteen years ago, I was introduced to the music of Iris DeMent. She is a talented singer/songwriter with a uniquely amazing voice. Tonight, she performed at the Paramount Center here in Bristol. I didn’t realize until tonight that she was here for Rhythm & Roots a couple years ago; I’m not sure how I missed that.

Her step-daughter, Pieta Brown, opened for her. Although her performance was more or less unremarkable, she has a sweet voice and seems like she is probably a geniunely good person.

Iris’s performance was awesome! She opened with “Mama’s Opry” as a tribute to both her mother and to Bristol, “the Birthplace of Country Music”. She performed a number of songs from her new album, “The Trackless Woods”. The album is a collection of Russian poems which Iris set to music.

My favorite song of the evening was “Our Town”, which is one of, if not the,¬†first song she wrote. Here is a video of her performing it several years ago:


The place wasn’t packed, but the audience was very much into the concert and gave Ms. DeMent a standing ovation at the end of it. Although I would have been able to get a decent seat if I had waited to get my ticket at the door, I didn’t want to take any chances, so I ordered it online in advance. I was in seat D118, which was right down front, on the right side. Here’s my ticket:

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Next on the agenda is to find out who will be performing at Rhythm & Roots this year. I’ve heard that Steve Earle will be here. If that is indeed true, I’ve got to be sure to go!

A Trip to the Dam

I’ve been feeling kind of wound up inside lately and decided that today would be a good day to go to the dam to relax and unwind a bit. This weekend is the NASCAR night race here in Bristol, which means this whole area will be wound up and tense until the weekend is over. Since today is only Tuesday, I didn’t expect to see many out-of-town race fans around town yet. I was wrong. They were swarming at the dam…a whole slew of them from Canada. It turned out not to be as relaxing as I had hoped it would be. I was able to take some pretty fabulous pictures, though. Enjoy!