Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Gone South

We headed down to Nashville this past weekend for my friend's 30th birthday. From the previous post, you might remember that I am something of a history geek. For this reason, one of the highlights of the weekend was visiting the Hermitage (President Andrew Jackson's home - plantation really). I don't think I would have much liked Andrew Jackson. The museum kind of glossed over some of the more interesting parts of him - the duel, the whiskey and the slavery. I got the distinct impression that the restorers of the property didn't want you to think too much about him as a person or about how the 140 slaves he had were treated. There was even a sign that said something to the effect of "The slaves here at the Hermitage were comforted by the fact they lived in close quarters and were able to keep some of their heritage because the slave compound was far enough from the main house." Maybe so, but they were still owned by someone at the main house. I guess things are different in the South. In fact, people kept telling me things such as "In the South we don't do that" and "That's pretty common in the South" as if it were a different country. I don't think I have ever used the expression, "Things are different up here with us Yankees" or ever really felt the need to.

All in all though, we had a great weekend visiting friends and helping to celebrate a milestone birthday...it's just things are different down there.

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