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Thursday, September 25, 2008

Le Grand Entrance

I’m a big city girl—Queens, Long Island, Manhattan, Brooklyn—those are my old stomping grounds.

So when I decided to write about a small town in Tennessee I thought I’d better do a little research. Last year my friend, Deb, took me to her hometown, Bradford, a tiny place in West Tennessee.
I had an interesting time seeing the town ( a few blocks long), meeting her “aunties,” some of whom weren’t blood-related, and experiencing a world so different from my own. (You’ll have a chance to see how well my research paid off when my May release, ONE DEADLY SIN, comes out.)
This year, Deb and I decided to return to Bradford to check out their annual festival, Doodle Soup Days. What is doodle soup, you ask? Well…it’s a tasty concoction of chicken broth, drippings, vinegar, and hot (and I mean hot) peppers. Bradford is the self-styled Doodle Soup Capital of the World, and every year the town holds a weekend celebration, complete with parade, carnival rides, and, of course, doodle soup.

When TPTB found out Deb, her sister, and I were returning to town for this yearly event, they tasked us with the vital job of Parade Judge. Needless to say, I was thrilled. I thought—maybe they’ll think I’m a famous author! Maybe they’ll want my autograph! A picture with me! I’ll meet the mayor! Get keys to the city! You get my drift…

So Deb and I drive the 2 ½ hours from Nashville to Bradford, pull in under the huge Doodle Soup Days banner hanging over Main Street, and walk to the parade grounds. I step off the curb, twist my ankle, come down on my OTHER ankle, twist it, and land splat on my hienie in front of the WHOLE TOWN.

I knew my ankles wouldn’t hold me, so I sat in the street for a few minutes while a swarm of concerned citizens peppered me with “are you all right?” as if I could know that fast. Before I could mumble “I think so,” someone called an ambulance, and it came roaring up, sirens and everything. Could it get MORE embarrassing?

How’s this? The EMT—who, of course, everyone knew—determined that what I needed was…a Band-Aid! For the cut on my foot where I’d landed on it. Oh, and a bag of ice for the massive swelling. I spent the rest of the day hobbling around, trying to keep that ice on first one, then the other ankle, and fending off the knowing looks from everyone in town, who knew without me saying so, that I was the clumsy Yankee stranger judge, who fell off the curb in front of the old Bradford Bank.
At least you can't say I don't give my all for my art. And I did get to eat some delicious doodle soup.
How about you? Got any embarassing stories to share?

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Blogger lucy said...

ha ha ha!...i've heard that story already, but strangely enough it just gets funnier!

oh man, a band-aid! i definitely think that solution should find its way into Dead Certain: the hero who saved the heroine with a...band-aid.

also, i want to know which of the several handsome gentlemen in photo #2 your hero is based off of.

September 25, 2008 at 1:33 PM  
Blogger Annie Solomon said...

You're right. Handsome specimens all...

September 25, 2008 at 2:01 PM  
Blogger Tennessee Dave said...

First let me say that I grew up in Bradford. I left in 1986 for the military and came back 8 years later for a couple of years and then moved to Memphis for a job.
Having said that and read the post this is sorta funny. It's been almost 4 years since that happened to you and I can guarantee that at least once a week in some household this story gets told. You probably made their year.
As little as the EMTs have to do you are lucky you got away with a band-aid and ice. It's a wonder they didn't load you up, drive you around town a couple of times, and then lead the parade!

February 18, 2012 at 8:19 PM  
Anonymous Annie Solomon said...

Hi, Dave,

Fun hearing from an ex-Bradfordite, even after all this time. I'm still very close with my friend, and though she doesn't get back to Bradford since her Dad died, I'm still grateful to have seen the place where she grew up--so different from my own.

And it's nice to know I'l be remembered there, lol...

Thanks for stopping by.

February 19, 2012 at 7:51 AM  
Blogger Enterprise Systems said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

April 1, 2021 at 11:43 AM  

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