Bristol homecoming, day 3

July 24, 2012 at 4:15 pm

Yesterday afternoon Mom took the boys down to a nearby elementary school to play on the playground.

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When they got back Cody watched some “Mighty Machines” on Netflix with Mack.

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Mom made pizza for the boys, but we were almost out of milk so I drove to the store to buy some and to get something for myself for dinner. I wasn’t feeling Chef Boyardee pizza.

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I drove down State Street. This street runs through the middle of downtown…one side of the street is Tennessee and the other is Virginia.

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Tennessee state flags on the left, Virginia state flags on the right, with USA flags alternating.

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With the exception of a bagel shop and a Mac store, downtown hasn’t changed all that much since I left Bristol in 1987.

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There are little brass plaques all the way down State Street downtown in the middle of the yellow dividing lines designating the state line.

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I turned into Virginia…

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to head to the NEW Food City.

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This grocery store was huge and had a much better selection than the Food City that I went to the other day (gross and sad). Check out this enormous produce department:

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They even had sushi!

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I was hesitant…sushi in Tennessee? But there was another lady looking at the sushi and she told me that it was pretty good, so I went for it. I got a spicy cooked tuna roll, though. I was still wary to get anything raw here.

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The sushi was good, but the seaweed salad was not. Oh well.

When I got home the boys were all ready for bed and were watching television until Cody fell asleep (and was moved to the Pack-n-Play).

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This morning I did my ModelFit mobility (foam rolling + stretching) and warm up routines at home. My “home gym” in my parent’s basement:

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Then I headed to the YMCA to swim.

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Before swimming:

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After 2500 yards in about an hour:

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I forgot to bring a swim cap and my Mom doesn’t have one. This was the first time I swam laps without a cap in a long time. Swim caps rule. My hair kind of drove me crazy even though it was in a ponytail.

After I got home from swimming I showered and got presentable to go to a Rotary Club meeting with my Dad.

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The meeting was at the historic train station.

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This is no longer a functioning train station (trains go by, but don’t stop here).

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The train station has undergone renovations and restorations several times over the years. When I was in high school they used to have teen dances here. At one time there was a restaurant. Now I think it’s just an event location with a few offices. It’s a very cool building.

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I asked my Dad to take a picture of me with my Rotary sticker, but he took this:

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The meeting room was all historic and awesome. The glass in the little half-circle window above the door in the extreme background of this picture says “Men’s Shoeshine”:

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Lunch was good…bratwurst and sour kraut. I skipped the mashed potatoes, but not the coconut cake. Sorry Graeme. I’m on vacation.

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The presentation was about “Smart Beginnings, Virginia Highlands” an early childhood intervention coalition. I got to meet a bunch of my Dad’s cohorts (the kings of Bristol) as well as see a few familiar faces including my second grade teacher. I should have gotten a picture with her! When my Dad (Mack Calcote) introduced me as a visitor he of course had to include the fact that my two sons are named “Mack” and “Calcote”. That always gets a laugh and he loves to tell people that.

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Ah Bristol. I love it but I’m glad that I don’t live here anymore. It’s a good place to visit, despite what the sign says.

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After the Rotary luncheon, Dad and I drove out to the hospital so he could pick up some prescriptions from the pharmacy there.

This sign says, “Welcome Race Fans!”

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In addition to being Nascar central, Bristol is also the birthplace of country music. The first professional country music recordings were done here. I had a hard time getting photos today of all the murals and plaques celebrating Bristol’s country music heritage due to traffic and the rain, but I did get a picture of the building shaped like a guitar.

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That is not just a façade. That is the actual shape of the building.

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I’ve never been a fan of country music (except for Trace Adkins, “You’re Gonna Miss This”…fell in love with him when he was on The Apprentice).

The hospital is a new, modern, behemoth. It wasn’t here when I lived here.

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The hospital where I was born and where my Dad spent most of his career has been torn down. Good old Bristol Memorial. Kind of makes me sad.

On our way home there was an actual train passing the train station.

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We didn’t have to wait on it, though. If you are a Bristolian you know how to detour around the trains.

While Dad and I were at Rotary, Mom took the boys to the country club to swim with some friends (little William from the other day at the lake house). They had lunch at William’s house after swimming.

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Apparently Cody pitched a holy terror fit when it was time to leave because he had just discovered William’s play room filled with trucks and trains. Poor baby. When we got home Cody was zonked out on the sofa.

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I tiptoed down the stairs and shot this photo of my Mom’s grandchild photo gallery.

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I know some of you like pictures from when the kids were little, so here you go…

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That’s all I have for today, and I know that it’s way more than enough, as usual. I have no idea what the plans are for the rest of the week. I’m just going with the flow. Cya.