I talked about the first part of my UtopYa and Nashville adventures in part 1 earlier this week and now it’s time to relive the remainder of the trip!
We got a later start on Friday because there wasn’t really any panels we wanted to go to until the afternoon so we took it easy before heading out for the day. (I think one of my favorite parts of the trip was waking up, getting a cup of coffee in the kitchen and hanging out and chatting with Tonya and Jess! I wish we could do this EVERY morning. Danielle was sleeping :))
We went to this seriously amazing burger place called Burger Up that had absolutely amazing DELICIOUS truffle fries. I’m salivating just thinking about them. I had an amazing turkey burger that I must have devoured right away because I don’t have a picture of it either. 🙁
From there we went to the hotel and went to the panel Gender Roles and Stereotypes with Marissa Meyer, Katie McGarry, Jamie Anderson and Angela Frederick. This was pretty interesting and talked quite a bit about diversity and how we are getting a lot of diverse books (yay!) I know I mentioned in part 1 how much I love the amount of emotion Katie McGarry exudes when she talks and this panel was no different. I can’t remember the exact story but she did tell another anecdote that almost made me cry. I think I need to just write her a letter about how much I love her, haha.
We wandered around the exhibit hall as things wrapped up and just chilled before heading out for the night. Danielle and I saw the same football players we did the day before out by the pool again, chilling and eating cheetos. Apparently the work out regimen is pool and cheetos snacks… Hmmmm.
We headed out for the night with our first stop being Bar Louie’s for some food and drinks!
Then we headed to downtown Nashville.
There was live music spilling out of each place we passed and we headed into The Tin Roof. The band playing there was really good! Armed with some drinks we grabbed a good spot to hang out. They played old school rock covers and country and I just loved it! Why do places like this not exist in Seattle??
After the band finished their set, we headed back out (into the rain!) but I was all for frolicking in the rain. Seattleite at heart even if I do want to hang in Nashville every day! Danielle and I did the cha cha out on the street… somewhere where music was playing and then headed into Paradise Park (which apparently was not where Jess was pointing at us to go to but I just followed Danielle. In retrospect, not sure why I was following the direction-impaired gal haha!)
At Tootsie’s, this lovely singer sang “Round Here” (Florida Georgia Line) while staring into my eyes for like a full 15 seconds (Danielle is my witness!)
They were so good too! I didn’t ask their name like I did at Tin Roof unfortunately. I just wish places like this was a thing here in Seattle. Sure, we have live music. But they’re not going to play country at all and they’ll definitely have covers. Why does Nashville have to be so far away from me?!
All that dancing took its toll on my feet and I had these lovely boil-like blisters on my feet the next morning. They were pretty much the worst blisters ever. Picture not included, obviously.
So we had a late start to the day and eventually meandered to the hotel for the author signings. I got to meet Chelsea Fine (my awesome #otspsecretsister Kaitlin had gifted me a book of hers — it’s like she’s psychic!) and she is the cutest!! So super sweet and she jumped up to give me a hug when I met her! <3 Complete haul pic at the end of this post!
We got dinner and amaaaazing ice cream from Jeni’s before heading back for the UtopYa awards!
Interspersed throughout the awards was a lip sync contest that was HILARIOUS. They were so good and I couldn’t stop laughing. I mean, I don’t even know when they all got time to practice but they were GOOD!
Afterward, they set up the room for a daaance party (which I was up for, my feet not so much). I have to say, Rachel Harris? HAS GOT MOVES. I wish I could dance half as well as she can, it was so much fun hanging out with her! I am not positive who else we were with (looking at you Jess because no one had name tags anymore! ha) but it was a lot of fun!
Then I saw the amazingly good looking cover model there and went “Jess, you must take a picture of me with him because our drinks match his shirt” (upon closer inspection, they don’t…) Unfortunately, he was fully clothed at this event but you can see otherwise here on his FB! (OH GOD, I realize how that sounds — he is not NAKED, geez guys, get your heads out of the gutter).
After dancing the night away, we crashed to wake up early to head to this amazing breakfast place where you make your own all you can eat pancakes!
I also got biscuits and gravy because it’s my favorite breakfast food and I’m in the South! I had to. Basically I ate way too much food. Not long afterward, Tonya left us and then Jess dropped me off at the airport. 🙁 🙁 🙁 ALL THE SADS.
I very much enjoyed my trip and seeing these ladies because I talk to them every. single. day. and I wish so badly we could SEE each other more often. I love you girls!! Major big thanks to Jess for letting us crash at her apartment and carting us around all over Nashville!
I am now depressed because I miss them so. Here’s my utopya haul: