You Never Know Who You’ll Meet.

So I talked to the potential new roommates today, Andy & Robyn—a really nice couple I met through roommates.com that have a gorgeous place right off Whites Creek in Nashville. They’re actually the ones that initiated contact with me, rather than how it usually works on these kinds of sites and it’s the person looking for a place that will typically contact the person(s) with a place/room available. They both seem really nice and easy-going and from the sounds of it, Robyn has a bit of an interest in art as well. I talked to her briefly and learned that she even taught a class at Watkins, my school—AND that she has family up here in Central New York (literally minutes from me)…so it’s definitely a small, small world. It was only one phone call, but I think the arrangement could work. I mean, the location is amazing—no more driving an hour back and forth between Murfreesboro and Nashville. And it’s right by Briley, so no Interstates—which of course means no constantly getting stuck in rush hour traffic when you need to go/get out of downtown Nashville. And for those of you that are all too familiar with rush hour traffic in Nashville—you know just how valuable that is/can be.


My family of course think I’m crazy to move in with a couple of complete strangers…again. True, this isn’t my first foray into living with strangers…the other time being with the 2 guys I moved in with out in Joelton that I found through Craigslist. Granted, that decision might have been a bit hasty on my part and it could, in all honestly, have ended NOT so well for me—“Um, Hellooo Craigslist Killer anyone?!”, as my sister would say—but it didn’t. The guys were nice and normal enough. And besides, this time it’s a couple—which is a hell of a lot safer—statistically, speaking—than if I were to find another place to live with just guys.


My family—they’re so damn paranoid. That—and they watch too much damn Law & Order, I think. Not everyone is some sadistic serial killer or rapist out to get me. And yes, these people are strangers and I know essentially nothing about them and yet I’m going to be living in an enclosed space alongside them, but so what? My mother’s always saying that she doesn’t know where I got it from, my daredevil behavior—and my ability to just throw caution to the wind and jump head first into something with little or no disregard for the risks. That she’ll never understand how I could leave everyone and travel so far away and actually be comfortable while I surround myself with strangers. My grams says I have gypsy blood. She’s probably right. I like meeting new people. It’s just my nature. And that was part of the reason why I moved to Nashville—to start over and meet new people—to make a new life for myself. If I wanted to sit holed up inside an apartment or room all day and having no contact with anyone beyond my four walls, I would have stayed in New York instead of moving to Nashville. I moved because I didn’t want that. I still don’t. I’ve tried telling my family they don’t have to worry, but they won’t listen. They think I’m being reckless. Unsafe. But whether they like it or not, sometimes you just have to have faith in people. I don’t want to live my life looking over my shoulder or thinking the worst of people. That’s no way to live. I want to live, believing that people are inherently good. I don’t trust in much or too many people these days, but the one thing I do trust—and need/want to trust—is myself – and my instincts. And my instincts are telling me these people are good people. That they aren’t serial killers who are going to cut me up into pieces and bury me all over their back yard. And that they aren’t of those weird couples with some decked out and super creepy sex dungeon in their basement or god knows what the hell else (Hey, I’ve seen Law & Order: SVU!). I think I’ll be safe. LOL


Hopefully I can get the car fixed quickly, so I’ll be down there by the end of the week. I might not have much to bring with me thanks to the fuckers that illegally threw away all my belongings that were in my apartment, but I’m still leaving. I’m not staying here in New York any longer than I need to be. It’s bad enough I’ve been stuck here this additional time while this car crap gets figured out. It’s time to go home. Past time…  xoMESSIE

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Sweet Sixteen, To You & Me.

While I’m sure most everyone else my age was out celebrating last night, I brought in the New Year with my nieces. That’s right. So, while everyone else was toasting away or watching the ball drop on TV or whatever it was they chose to do to celebrate the festival occasion, I was stuck playing mediator between a 12-year-old and a 5-year-old – as the 5-year-old insisted on talking to “SIRI” on the 12-year-old’s new iPhone that she just got for Christmas…whereas the 12-year-old felt the 20 minutes she’d already let said 5-year-old talk to “Siri” was long enough and therefore she should be able to have her phone back so she could resume playing her “super intense” (**her words, not mine**) “Clash of the Clans” game in peace. Umm, yeah. So, that’s how I rang in the New Year. Not exactly the most exciting NYE, I know…but definitely an interesting one. It’s never a dull moment with kids—especially this bunch—I will say that. While I can’t say that I particularly enjoyed playing mediator between a 12 and a 5-year-old at midnight in a fight over a phone…I can/will say that I preferred that to going out somewhere and celebrating. Crazy, right? I know how strange it must sound—like I’m some old recluse or something—but the truth of it is–that scene just isn’t me anymore. It hasn’t been for a long time.


There was a time when going out and celebrating occasions like New Year’s or Thanksgiving Eve with my friends was a given. When no one voiced a plan or invite…it was just expected. An unspoken arrangement of sorts. There were rarely any plans. Aside from choosing and agreeing on a place to pre-game, nothing was set in stone. We’d meet up, get nice and tipsy, and see where the night would lead us from there. The spontaneity was the best part of it, I think. I mean, really. Plans are predictable. Plans are stiff. Plans are boring. Who wants that?! Oh…to be 18 again. Or even 21. Just to be young again—hell to feel that young again. These days, those days seem like a lifetime ago. I honestly can’t remember the last time I went out with friends and had some pure, unadulterated, alcohol-infused fun. It’s been that long. But—sadly, yes there is a but in there—I can’t say as though I really miss it all that much. The camaraderie and company of friends, sure…sometimes. But the whole drinking to excess, making horrible/stupid decisions that I’ll likely regret come morning or at some eventual later point (because let’s face it, there’s always regrets), and waking up with a hangover that’ll make me rue the day I ever learned the word tequila or turned 21…yeah all that—not so much. Not to mention, with all the different meds I’m on for these wonderful (NOT!) PCS headaches of mine, I couldn’t go out for those drinks even if I had wanted to—unless I wanted to ring in the New Year’s in the Emergency Room…or worse. I don’t know. I guess that’s what happens when you grow up. Your priorities shift.


Or so I’ve heard… 😉


It’s funny because I think I’ve probably done more growing up in this year alone than I ever have…and yet I still don’t quite feel like an adult. Adult…the term alone just makes me shudder. It’s scary as hell…and confusing as fuck—pardon my language. It’s true. I mean, at what point do you really become an adult? I mean a real, full-fledged, card-carrying (if there were one just for it) adult?? Society would say it’s when you hit 18. Or 21. There’s a little leeway in there a bit. But that’s just an age. A technical formality, were it be. Age is just a number, after all. So what really defines the transition? Is it experience? Do you have to rack up so many moments before you can call yourself a bonafide “ADULT”—and if so, what kind? Are there certain kinds of required moments? Do you have to fall in love first—or have caused or to know heartbreak? Do you have to be challenged and fall and hit rock bottom first? Do you have to find career and/or personal success and/or know failure first? I was thumbing through this list on Buzzfeed the other day–about how you know when you’re an adult, or something along those lines–and it had this little line about “…when you start saying “Congratulations” to hearing about someone being pregnant instead of “oh, shit”…”–so, is that the transition point? Do you suddenly become an adult just because you’ve settled down and started a family? Does having a child suddenly make you an adult? I’m 28, so it seems like everyone around me these days is either getting married or pregnant or having their 2nd or even 3rd kid. And part of me wonders how much of that is because they’re truly actually ready for the responsibility…or if its because its what society expects at this point and time, you know?

I think about my grams and how when she was my age–at 28–she was already a wife and mother to 7 children. Seven! That just blows my mind. By those standards, I’m practically ancient. An old maid, so to speak. I can’t even imagine it. There’s a lot I’m unsure about, but of one thing I am certain–I’m not ready for all of that. Marriage. It’s a huge commitment, tying yourself to one person for the rest of your life…hypothetically. I’ve always been a little marriage-shy…maybe because I think about it too much and I’m too rational and logic tells me that there’s a chance–a good chance–that either him or I might wake up tomorrow or a month or year from now and decide we want different things in life. I don’t know. And the thought of throwing kids into that mix–these innocent little lives whose happiness and well-being that we’d be responsible for…well, that’s just a little overwhelming. Don’t get me wrong, I love kids. I do. And I can handle the responsibility–hell, I basically raised my sister’s twins their first year…but right now…I don’t know. I feel like I still have a lot more growing up to do first. That is, maybe growing up isn’t the right term for it. I just feel like I have/need something more that I need first. The carpools and recitals and soccer games will all come later, in due time…if it’s meant to be. Carpe diem, right? If it happens, it happens.


I don’t have the answers. I just know that 2015 brought so much growth—both personal and professional—and perspective into my life. When I packed up my life and relocated down to Tennessee all the way back at the start of the year, I honestly didn’t have a clue where I’d end up a year from then. Where I’d be today, right here. I really didn’t. I put everything—and I mean everything—on the line. I left everything and everyone I’d ever known—without a doubt, THE scariest thing I’ve ever done—and took a chance on something—someone with not the greatest track record … myself. I left New York to find myself–to figure out who I was and whether or not I could stand on my own two feet without my family there to catch me when I fell. There were no guarantees. And it was terrifying and hard—you have no idea how much so—but it was also so very gratifying and rewarding. I’ve realized a strength in this past year that I never knew I had—would never have even guessed that I had—and I’m so grateful that I did. Some don’t understand…some may call me crazy for uprooting my whole life just like that—and it was a little crazy—but there’s no denying the success I’ve found. Or the peace. For 27 years, I feel like I was living my life in slow-motion. Like it was all just a dress rehearsal for now. For right now. Now I’m finally pressing play and living in normal pace…and it feels amazing. It feels exhilarating. I don’t know what’s going to happen from one day to the next…and I love that about it.


I’m not a big believer in making New Years resolutions…but if I were to make one this year, it would be to continue that journey I began a year ago when I left out in that Jeep and crossed those state lines. The accident may have hindered things a bit…but it hasn’t stopped me. I’ve still got a bucket list of things to do, and I’ll be damned if I’m not going to at least try to do them. We only have this one life and I’m going to live mine…the only way I know how: With open arms and at breakneck speed …


So here’s to an eventful, successful, beautiful Sweet Sixteen world!

Happy New Year Y’all!!

xoMessie

Merry Christmas (Twenty-Fifteen)

Merry Christmas y’all!!

**

Can we just pause for a moment here so I can lament on how absolutely surreal and crazy it is that it’s already December—correction, the end of December? It’s unreal. I don’t know where the time goes, I really don’t. Add to that, the fact that we’re quite literally on the very cusp of a brand new year—2016—well that just makes it all the more surreal. Seriously people…where did the year go…??

**

And to think that this time last year, I was in the midst of packing my things in preparation for my big move down to Nashville. I can’t believe an entire year has passed since then.

**

But it has. And it’s been one hell of a whirlwind of a year, that’s for sure. I’m not going to lie–I had my doubts about moving 900 miles away from literally everyone and everything I’d ever known and starting over in a brand new city completely on my own—I did. Honestly, I didn’t think I could do it. I’d given myself a few weeks—a month or two, tops—before I went running back to New York, tail between my legs, so to speak. I expected the glitter and excitement of being in a new place to wear off. And that I’d grow weary of city-life and having to sit in rush hour traffic for almost an hour just to get my daily caffeine fix (**because I’ve GOT to have my iced coffee and the DD on Fesslers Lane makes THE best iced coffee in town–and also happens to be the only 24 hour joint around for miles**). I was afraid I wouldn’t fit in or make any friends—the real, honest-to-goodness kind like some of the ones I’d left behind in New York. But more than anything, I was afraid of failing—that I’d be given this incredible opportunity—heck, that I’d worked like hell for and earned—to go to such a wonderful city and I’d just somehow screw it up like I’d done with most every other good thing in my life up to that point. That was my biggest fear. And if we’re being completely honest, sometimes it still is, just a little.

**

Suffice to say—AND THANKFULLY, I MIGHT ADD—all that worry (or most of anyhow) was for naught. I’d already fallen in love with the city when I’d previously visited in April to tour Watkins—it’s such a beautiful place, how could I not—but I think I fell in love all over again once I hit those city limit signs. As fate would have it, just as I hit the city, the song “Home” by Daughtry came on the radio—ohhh, I kid you not—and it was the best damn sign I could have been given right then. It couldn’t have been clearer in telling me that I’d made the right choice and that Nashville was right where I was supposed to be. As crazy as it sounds, it really did feel like I was home. And now here we are–here I am–a year later, and that feeling hasn’t changed. If anything, it’s only gotten stronger.

**

As guilty as I feel to admit it, I’ve never been happier. I’ve made friendships that I’m confident will last for years to come, and I’m beyond grateful for that. In a sense, they’ve become my sort-of stand-in family…and while they can’t replace my actual family, it helps knowing they’re there if need be. I met a sweet, kind, and probably the most understanding man to ever walk this earth–especially to put up with this distance the past few months with me here in NY and him back home in TN. I’m just beyond anxious to head back and be home–and moreover, to see everyone.

**

I’ve been given so many incredible opportunities that I never would have even imagined in New York. This whole Hollywood and movie-making business—never in a million years did I imagine being a part of that whole world. Heck, even if you’d told me last year that I’d be here…I probably would have laughed in your face. It’s just so…not ME. Or at least it wasn’t, I should say. I guess I have fate to thank for all of this—for putting myself and my friend Alan in the same 2-D class. After all, that’s how and where it all began—the two of us becoming fast friends, bonding over our shared dislike of the Professor-from-HELL and all but a few select classmates in the class. To recap from there, he’d written a screen-play and was planning to make his first film. Knowing I was a photographer, he asked me to take some BTS pics of the auditions. It was just for fun. Nothing special.

**

From that point to where it stands now…it’s all pretty much a blur. Now I have contacts and credits in the film industry that I never expected to have—and still can’t believe I have. I’ve been on an actual film set and have seen just what goes into the making of a film…and I now have the utmost respect for the actors and actresses out there that do it for a living. It’s not exactly an easy job, despite how it looks from the outside. And the days are long. I was the set photographer, so I was there for the whole of it—and there’s a lot of waiting. It takes a lot of patience. A LOT OF PATIENCE. What came most unexpected to me is how much I’ve actually liked what I’ve done. I didn’t think I would. I mean, granted, there’s some parts that I really don’t like. For instance—the diva-bitch actresses who think they’re–as my friend Alan would say, “The Meryl Streep(s) of Nashville”— and as such, are in desperate need of a hearty dose of “reality check”. There’s a lot of conniving and underhandedness, too…but I think you’ll find that with anything. For the most part, though, I’ve enjoyed the experience. Word on my freelancing is spreading and I’m getting offers for sessions and websites left and right—it’s all kind of crazy. A good crazy.

**

Of course, there’s the not so great misfortune that’s come with this year as well. The little hiccup in June with the accident and the damn concussion that has really done a number on me, in more ways than one. It’s unreal how your whole life can change in a split-second…and it did exactly that. It’s like someone pressed the pause button on my life that day and it’s only just recently begun playing again. I don’t have my life back, not completely. I’m trying to get back to it, slowly. It’s hard when you’re still trying to wade through the pain of a pounding headache day in and day out. I have all these damn meds—seriously, there are 6 different pills—that I’m supposed to be taking every day. They’re supposed to help with the headaches. They barely even touch the surface most of the time. And I hate taking them because they make me really loopy—you know, that whole out-of-body, noodles for limbs—kind of feeling. That’s no fun on its own, let alone when you’ve got a splitting headache to boot. So I’m trying to work through the pain. It’s a process. And it sucks. But really, what else can I do…

**

All in all, I’ve come so far this year…further than I thought I’d be. And a great year it’s been. Headache and stressors aside, I couldn’t be happier. I can’t wait to see what 2016 brings…

**

And on that note…a little Happy Holidays from the two–and my absolute favorite–(little) leading men in my life… (**You’ll have to excuse the Jake cranky-face–the little guy was in no mood for pictures or presents…but even sporting a pout, he’s still a little cutie pie!**)

**

**

(**Oh, and did I mention, these little cuties just celebrated a birthday a couple of weeks ago…TWO already! How is that even possible? It feels like it was just yesterday when it was just the three of us all day, everyday…when my nerves were shot from weeks of sleep training and episodes of Dinosaur Train and Daniel Tiger on repeat (*I still know the theme songs to both by heart btw*)…and every smile or smallest feat was cause for an impromptu photo-shoot. Now my Twinnies are turning into little men and I just want to scoop them up and never let them go and just make them stop growing. 😦 **)

**

xoMESSIE

Tennessee Melancholy … a poem

**So I was cleaning up my hard drive/files and came across this little poetry homage of sorts to Nashville that I wrote a few weeks back when I was feeling especially nostalgic and homesick. Thought I’d share. 🙂  xoMESSIE**


Tennessee Melancholy -10/18/2015-

Been away just a few months now,

Feels like forever, sometimes.

And oh, how I miss those Sunday afternoon rides.

Those leisurely Interstate 65 drives;

Just Nash FM on the radio and I.

To my left and my right,

Beheld the prettiest of sights.

Green rolling hills that stretch for miles with no end.

Far away, beyond the horizon.

And skies so cerulean blue.

Tennessee, home sweet home, oh how I miss you.

Taking walks by the Cumberland,

Its’ surface rippling just the slightest in the Southern wind.

And flowers still bloom in Centennial Park,

Long after the Summer’s end.

And nothing compares to the view from Shelby Bridge.

Downtown on Broadway and 1st Avenue,

The streets are alive with music and spilling over with tourists.

Come dusk, the locals know best to steer clear and altogether avoid it.

Down in the Gulch is where you’ll find the dreamers—

the poets and painters.

Those altruistic, optimistic peace-makers.

The East side’s been busy, reinventing itself and all that.

Having worked hard and taken great strides.

Many would even say that it’s been gentrified.

Unless, of course, you hail from the West,

Who still believe they’re better than the rest.

Though why they think that—is anyone’s guess.

Walk the stage at the Opry,

Take a tour of RCA Studio B.

Stand where all the legends have stood.

Feel the glory, feel the awe.

Say you came, and you felt; and you saw.

Follow that roundabout to Music Row,

That opportunistic corner where they take nobodies and turn them into “STARS”.

“Nashville’s no city”, they say…”just a really big town”.

And now that I’ve been—I know they’re not wrong.

It’s true; you really can’t help but feel like you’re a part of it all.

Especially when the people are as welcoming as they are.

And you can’t explain how you know,

You just know that you do.

After so long running and aimlessly searching,

Never feeling like you truly belong.

You can rest, settle down.

Make a life for yourself.

Just let it all out.

The past, your fears, your insecurities; all your doubts.

You can let it all go.

Once and for all.

Now that you’ve finally found a place of your own.

A place to call HOME.

For me, it’s right here. .

My home sweet home.

This little big “town”.

Music City, USA.

The one and only,

Nashville, Tennessee.

~~

I’m Still Here.

It’s been awhile, so I figured I’d post a little update.  It’s been a crazy, hectic past couple of weeks. I’m back in New York. Yep, drove up last week to try and get these headaches taken care of. I can’t help but notice the blatant irony in that I had to drive 900 something miles to see doctors and specialists about an injury sustained in a CAR ACCIDENT. Talk about illogical. It makes no sense to me. I mean, the accident happened in Tennessee…and the insurance 100 perfect willing to pay all the medical bills, yet the specialists in Tennessee wouldn’t see me. I don’t get it. It’s a bunch of bureaucratic bullshit, if you ask me. And it’s not like I didn’t try. Hell, I must have called a dozen different places–that’s not including the places and specialists each ER referred me to–and nothing. I got absolutely nowhere. I did manage to get into this one family clinic back in Nashville, but the visit wasn’t very productive. The doctor basically just gave me a quick exam, asked me a bunch of questions, and sent me on my way with a couple of new headache prescriptions and the same old “referral to a neurologist” advice.

Now that I’m back up in New York, I had an appointment the other day with my primary care doctor so that she could refer me to a neurologist…which didn’t exactly go to well. And by that I mean I didn’t at all like what she had to say. For starters, she informed me that the reason I was having all these issues with these meds not working for the headaches is because the meds the other doctors down in Tennessee prescribed me were all for migraines…and that it’s not migraines that I’m having…they’re concussion headaches. Apparently there’s a difference. Yeah. So obviously, after she told me that, I asked her why they kept giving me meds for migraines then and she literally just shrugged and said that it’s probably because I was in pain and they were trying to help–and that they probably didn’t want to tell me that there was nothing they could do for me. Wonderful right? So they knew there was nothing they could do…yet they gave me meds after meds that didn’t help and in some cases actually made the headaches worse. Yeah…’cause that’s not messed up or anything. Ridiculous.

So anyhow, I asked her what I was supposed to do if there was apparently nothing that could be done for the headaches medication-wise. Brain rest, was her answer. Meaning no bright lights or being out in the sun for any length of time, no flashing lights, no loud noises, no focusing or concentrating on the computer screen…etc. You get the point. So basically I’m supposed to shut myself in a dark room and do nothing but sleep. She prescribed a few meds, one of which is supposed to at least help me sleep…and it does for a bit, but it does nothing for the headaches. And in the morning I just feel so groggy–i hate it. She also wants me to be seen at the Concussion Clinic in Syracuse and an ENT if the nosebleeds don’t let up. Maybe I’ll get some answers from one of those. All things considered, I highly doubt that’ll happen. But who knows?

Yeah…like that’s going to happen. I’m a photographer, I have editing to do with the computer. And right now, things are absolutely crazy with the film blowing up like it is. I’m in charge of the blog and the production company website in addition to having just designed the theatrical/promotional posters for the film because the graphic designer Alan hired submitted crap designs. I didn’t really plan on doing the posters, but I got tired of writing code for the website and was fooling around a bit in Photoshop. I figured what the hell and sent him the poster…and he loved it. Then he got back to me and asked me to do another one…so I did. So yeah, I’ve been busy.

*3BB's Theatrical Poster*
*3BB’s Theatrical Poster*

And it’s bound to get busier. But in an exciting, awesome, great sort of way! When I said the film was blowing up…I wasn’t kidding. It’s insane how much attention it’s gotten. And it’s official, the film’s World Premiere will be in Atlanta in October. Then there’s a few other festivals…Charleston, Chicago, and some festival in Minnesota I believe. But that’s not even the most exciting part. It gets even better. We got an invitation from Berlin’s (that’s Germany, folks!) International Film Festival next year to attend. With that invitation, we’re automatically entered into Sundance, Toronto, and Cannes (France) –the 4 biggest International film festivals. How incredible is that? And just last week when I stopped by Alan’s to grab something I’d left at his house before I left for NY, he shared the news that he’d just gotten another festival invitation–to ROME, ITALY!!! I heard that and I immediately went, “Yep, I’m definitely getting a passport now…” lol. It’s mind-blowing how much attention and acclaim this film has gotten…and a little overwhelming, the fact that I actually had a part in this film, this great project. I’m so grateful and unbelievably proud of everyone involved. This is truly an opportunity of a lifetime and I’m taking it…hell, I’m grabbing it with both hands!

Now if I could just get rid of these headaches, it’d be absolute BLISS!

xoMESSIE

Happy Birthday ‘Merica.

So yesterday was my first (of hopefully many) 4th of July celebration here in Nashville. Honestly–I think I’m still a little shell-shocked–but in a good/giddy-like sort of way–about just being here…let alone all the opportunities I’ve been given. I  can’t believe I’ve been here for seven months now. It just seems so surreal…all of it. I keep thinking someone is going to pinch me and I’m going to wake up and all of this will have just been a dream. It’s crazy. Still, I have to admit, these past seven months have been the best seven months of my life. Truly. It’s hard to find just one adjective to describe my experience here so far, but I think I’ll go with a combination of AMAZING, INCREDIBLE, WONDERFUL…to start. It’s pretty amazing–and ironic-considering that I walked into this move seven months ago with no expectations. It probably doesn’t say much for the faith and confidence I have in myself, but I really didn’t think it’d stick, me moving down here. It wasn’t so much about the move itself that I had doubted…I knew I’d follow through with it. If for no other reason than to prove everyone wrong. It’s probably so wrong of me to say, but I just wanted (and needed) that selfish satisfaction of knowing that I’d surprised the hell out of everyone. I mean, I’ve done some pretty crazy things over the years…but this–this was in a level all its own. This was major. Even so, I never thought I’d truly see it through…that I’d stay. I didn’t think I’d make it. In fact, I would have bet money on it. That I’d give up and go running back to New York and my family before the semester had even finished. I never in a million years expected this–that I’d love it like I do. And I do. I love it here. I love this beautiful, amazing city and the beautiful people in it. It’s everything I’d secretly harbored hope that it’d be…and so much more. It’s hard to explain, but somehow being here just makes me feel good about myself, my life…my future. I feel like ME, you know? Like I finally be the person that I’ve always to be…the person that I’m MEANT to be. Without all the pretense and the issues and baggage. Being here is like coming up for a breath of fresh air (and yes, I stole that from Grey’s–but it’s a good analogy) after being submerged for such a long time. I feel free–freer that I’ve ever felt. Maybe it’s the distance, maybe it’s the people–I don’t know–but it feels good. It feels really, really good.

 

And on that note–FREEDOM–I celebrated in true #Nashie spirit. I braved the pouring rain and a crowd in excess of 300,000 people and went downtown for the fireworks. It was absolutely crazy down there, but it was completely worth it. I managed to get close enough to the stage set up on Broadway to see Martina McBride perform a few songs–which I’ve got to give the lady big props for because she literally had to perform in the POURING RAIN– and had a great view of the fireworks show. Which was fantastic, I might add. Not that I’m at all surprised–it was slated to be the largest fireworks display in the whole nation–topping even that of NYC’s. It was an incredible show–and most definitely worth getting soaked and being crammed into one street with that huge of a crowd. Even worth the shoe that I lost somewhere on Broadway–in my defense, it was pouring rain, there was a puddle, and well…I don’t know how to walk–and the hour or so it took just to get out of downtown. Definitely, definitely worth it. I’m so glad I went. So grateful to be here in this amazing city for one of the biggest holiday celebrations of the year.

 

Despite the pouring rain on my lens, I managed to get some–what I think are pretty awesome–pics. (**See Below**)

 

Happy Belated Birthday America!!

 

xoMESSIE

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**My Personal Favorite Of The Bunch**

 

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And some live video from the show…

(** P.S. Sorry for the shakiness…I’m a photographer, not a videographer. 🙂 **)

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OPENING FIREWORKS SET:

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CLOSING FIREWORKS SET:



*<3*

 

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