After a late night celebrating New Year’s Eve, we didn’t wake up until 9:45 AM! We quickly grabbed breakfast from the hotel, got dressed for a day outdoors and made our way towards Radnor Lake State Park for a hike. On the way, we passed by some gigantic and gorgeous houses and properties. What stood out wasn’t just the individual houses as we drove by, but the sheer number of them, how did this many people afford such high style of living in the same area? And, we hadn’t even discovered more than a small portion of these houses, I am certain that the uber-wealthy lived in inaccessible areas. Radnor Lake offered a nice, winding and wooded trail around the lake.
Easy hiking of about 2 miles afforded us some great downtime to recharge from the busy weekend thus far. We came across other couples, families and lots of solo hikers with their dogs. The weather was teetering on the verge of raining the entire hike, but we made it through staying relatively dry.
Our next exploration took us west of Franklin to Leiper’s Fork, TN, a small town with famous residents like Justin Timerlake and Carrie Underwood. The historic district consists of about a dozen or so buildings lined along one street, taking up two blocks. Because it was New Year’s Day, many of the stores were closed. Primarily, the stores carried antiques, musical instruments, touristy items and handcrafted wares. Fortunately, our lunch spot was open for the day and we walked into Puckett’s of Leiper’s Fork not knowing what to expect. We had visited Puckett’s in downtown Franklin before, but this was a completely different atmosphere and arrangement.
There was a deli-type counter, with a hot grill, off of which you could order food. They primarily offered meat plus three type meals with fried chicken headlining the meat. I ordered a burger based of a suggestion and Brooke ordered the Pimento Grilled Cheese. After eating we strolled down the almost traffic-less street (I was told that it is usually a very busy road, especially with motorcycles) and paid a visit to the stores that were open that day.
With limited cell coverage, we did our best to navigate to our next stop; the picturesque Natchez Trace Parkway Bridge. Only once did we have to pull into someone’s driveway when cell service opened back up to pull up maps and be on our way. It turned out to be a longer drive than we had anticipated, but the bridge and the views from it were well worth the drive.
After some nervous bridge trekking, we made our way back into Franklin and Cool Springs, but not much was open due to the holiday. We ended up back at the hotel to rest for a bit before heading out for our nighttime plans.
We wanted to explore the honky tonk scene on Broadway to listen to some live music and find something great to eat. The choices for dinner were limited again by the holiday, so we decided to wing it and see where we might end up downtown. We happened to park very near the pedestrian bridge and decided to take in the views of the river and downtown at night, but the fog limited our view of both. However, the views of the bridge itself were nothing short of spectacular.
The time waiting wasn’t going to be an issue because we could explore downtown while we waited and they would text us when the table was ready. We walked through Printer’s Alley and then back to Broadway, popping into a few of the bars to listen to live music. While at our 3rd establishment, we were alerted that our table was ready and returned for dinner (hot chicken sandwich for me and grilled “Caprese” sandwich for Brooke).
We spent the rest of the night taking in more live music at Tootsie’s Wild Orchid, Robert’s, Tin Roof and Legends Corner.
I noticed a pattern of the same music being played everywhere: Tennessee Whiskey to get the swaying going, Chattahoochee for upbeat sing along, some song of Johnny Cash to prove you’re old country, Take Me Home, Country Roads to get everyone singing and Sweet Caroline to really get everyone involved. The best music we found was at Tootsie’s, where a newly-wed couple took turns as lead singer playing cover songs.
The husband had been a school teacher in Florida, but was actually making more money doing live shows in Nashville. The bands always have a tip bucket and many of them panhandle through the crowd as well. I requested an Eric Church song for Brooke and we called it a night. In the morning we were driving back to Florida.
This was Day 4 of our New Year’s in Nashville CLEW-less trip. Check out the rest of the trip here!