So, the title probably sounds like some hokey country song... but it's true, I was hit by a car in Nashville!
The scene: Downtown Nashville, rain pouring, freezing bitter cold air, I'm holding an umbrella overhead as Sarah and I are walking crossing the street from where we parked to head to Broadway and to go see Neutral Milk Hotel at the Ryman Auditorium.
We have a green light, and we're in the middle of the crosswalk, when a big Ford F-250 truck is coming toward us from across the street taking a left. I am laughing and looking at Sarah trying to keep the umbrella over our heads - she yells and I stop, I look up and "THUD" immediately am struck in the right leg and fall backwards on my tailbone, catching myself with my hands catching me behind me.
"Holy shit, I'm down! I've been hit!" is what goes through my mind as I sitting on the ground in a puddle of cold water unsure if I can move my leg. I hear people yelling at the driver screaming "What the f*ck, dude, get the f*ck out of your car, what is wrong with you"... strangely most of the focus is on the guy who caused the hit, and I look up like, half laughing... "Um, hello, can someone help me up?" I take a deep breath and found that my leg was sore, but my knee is fine and I can bend and move like usual... Whew... I beckon everyone to get out of the road and for the guy who hit me to pull over and come talk with us.
I stood there shaking in the rain and had a tremendous moment with my sister Sarah, as we both realize that one step farther and he could have really run me over and done serious damage... and while I was shook up and sore, I was alive. I was fine. We hugged and then the guy who hit me came over and WE hugged, he couldn't stop apologizing, and we all exchanged phone numbers just in case... and Sarah and I still went to Neutral Milk Hotel, got an ice pack and just sat to enjoy the show (which was amazing in case anyone else is thinking of seeing them on their reunion tour after 10 years not playing... Do it!)
I learned a two big lessons that day:
1 - We never know how quickly things can change or how long we have time in this place... so cherish wherever you are, and love the ones you're with.
2 - Words are powerful! Everyone kept saying "Your leg is going to bruise, that was super loud and intense... etc, you should get it checked out" and I kept asking them not to say that, saying "I'll be fine, it won't bruise." I iced it during the show, put on some essential oils, and sent lots of reiki energy to my leg all evening and literally the next day I was a bit sore, but never super swollen or bruised. I was certainly lucky, but I that staying positive played a large roll in how my body responded to healing.
Whew... I was able to drive 6 hours the next day.
I made my way to Little Rock, Arkansas. I couchsurfed again and stayed with the most lovely French couple (Nick and Marie) who moved there for a job three years ago. They immediately welcomed me into their home with hugs and warm home cooked meal, and we got on like we'd been friends for years. It really is the most interesting network of people who host and surf on this site... traveling around the world for free and also offering their hospitality to others. We went out that night for drinks and played shuffleboard, and the next day Marie drove me around Little Rock so I could check out the town, which is small but very nice! There are lots of little pockets with boutiques, bike shops, good food, and coffeeshops... and the whole city runs adjacent to the Arkansas River, so I'm sure in the warmer months it's really pleasurable to hang outside. The city also hosts the nation's longest pedestrian bridge - running approximately a mile in length.
I got the pleasure of seeing Bob Schneider live the night before I left at Juanita's (a local venue)- he's a musician from Austin, Texas who puts on an awesome live solo performance using guitar, keyboard and vocal beats, and really fresh, fun lyrics. For not knowing what to expect of Little Rock, I have to say, I was really surprised by how long the people are... and I would recommend stopping if you get a chance!
I'm currently in Tulsa Oklahome, arriving last night and staying with another couchsurfer. We made dinner together last night after loving a recipe Marie shared with me for Quinoa fritters... yum! And I got to go for a solo swim in an indoor olympic-sized swimming pool this morning... feeling pretty darn lucky. I'm about to venue around town, and I'll update you next time.
Until then, safe & inspired journeying to all!