-by Andy Dudas-
August 21, 2017 1:28PM Centennial Park – Nashville, TN
In April of this year, we found a story online about the solar eclipse due to darken America’s doorstep in August. We made plans for a three day weekend in the Music City and ended up having one of the most unique and interesting experiences of our lives.
Our home in Richmond, IN is 357 miles or roughly 5 1/2 hours away. We tend to favor the ‘road less traveled’ on our way to a destination. We savor the journey, but there truly is ‘no place like home.’ The Interstate simply brings us home much, much quicker. These driving choices often offer us many things about which we would never see or hear. The long way has history. The long way inspires. The long way has become the our way.
Inspiration was found in Louisville. An overnight stay and a walk along the Ohio River found us at the door to the Muhammed Ali Center. alicenter.org
A man who stood up for what he believed in the face of adversity. Something to which we should all aspire. A Golden Gloves Champion, an Olympic gold medalist, and three time Heavyweight Champion of the World, it could be argued his influence and inspiration became much larger outside the ring than in.
“I know where I’m going and I know the truth, and I don’t have to be what you want me to be. I’m free to be what I want.”
“It’s a lack of faith that make people afraid of meeting challenges, and I believe in myself.”
“The more we help others, there more we help ourselves.”
Continuing our drive we found many more interesting sights and cities. Historic theaters still in operation these days are not always easy to find. Elizabethtown, KY has one such building and after having done a little research, the State Theater is our kind of place.
Constructed in 1942 with a capacity for 950 occupants, the State was in operation for 40 years. Finally closing its doors in 1982 after the showing of its final motion picture, “E.T. the Extra Terrestrial.” Ultimately, the city purchased the building and with a lot of work and a private fundraising effort in the 90s, the theater reopened in its current form as the Historic State Theater Complex in 2009. Seating up to 650 today, the main stage holds many functions from showing classic films, to comedy shows and live theater. The facility is also home to the Hardin County Playhouse, a blackbox theater and has a banquet hall available for receptions.
Still standing proud after all these years. historicstatetheater.org
On a modest budget, my parents honeymooned to the great state of Kentucky in 1961. Visiting Mammoth Cave, nps.gov/maca/index.htm We were unable this trip to make this stop but we will in the future.
And they also visited Ft. Knox. knox.army.mil Two places unique to the Bluegrass state, that as we endeavored on toward Tennessee passed by quite unexpectedly.
I have an appreciation for Ian Flemming’s James Bond, instilled in me by my father. Accidentally happening on Ft. Knox stirred emotions in me that only my father could have understood. Memories of my father grow stronger the longer he’s gone. He would have loved that we were there. Filmed on location, ‘Goldfinger’ arguably the best of all the Bond films, will forever hold a special place in my heart. 007.com
This blog post, much like our drive to view the eclipse, took many unexpected turns. What in the beginning was something to speak to the wondrous experience of a celestial body perfectly lining up between two others has ended up being a trip down memory lane and one of nostalgia.
The eclipse brought tears to our eyes and our pulses to race. The magnitude, now days later, still has no proper context. The weight of the moment, the tangible change in temperature, the onset of darkness at 1:30 in the afternoon, all of these things combined or separate make it difficult to put into words how we felt. As pictures are worth so many…please consider the following:a lens flare at 12:31pm…
…through the clouds at 1:06pm…
…somewhere near 50%…
Through our journey to Nashville, finding many interesting places along the way, when the three universal bodies aligned, how did we feel?
Andy Dudas 8/24/2017
p.s. – ask us about the traffic on the way home sometime.
Andy Dudas has interests varying from painting and singing, to photography and prop making. Pretty much anything that has a creative element. Amateur status in all endeavors, he finds art everywhere he looks. Always seeking his next inspiration.