The Summer of 2013 – (Part 2)

We returned to Nashville to find my mother had fallen the night before and was in St. Thomas Hospital.  Back in March, she experienced a serious fall, breaking her jaw and nose, which kept her hospitalized at Vanderbilt for 2 weeks, followed by 2 months at rehab, where she healed remarkably.  She had only been back at Park Manor less than a month when she fell again.  At least this time, nothing was broken.

If anyone has aging parents, there is not a better place for them to live than Park Manor on Woodmont Blvd.  It compares to being on a cruise ship, with gourmet meals and daily activities.  The staff there is simply marvelous.  They even stayed with her at St. Thomas until our return.  After a few days, she was back home at Park Manor, with arrangements made for 24-hour care when necessary.

We also found The Blue Moon Waterfront Grill at Rock Harbor Marina was in full swing upon our return.  The new slip where we were to keep our boat was nearing completion too!

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When we moved into the new slip, I installed some neat color changing lights on the top deck.

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It was great to see Rock Harbor Marina come to life after the new additions.  It seemed like a Hatteras Convention one weekend!  The new sport of Stand-Up Paddle Boarding was also in full swing at Rock Harbor.  PaddleUpTn has been a great addition to the marina.  www.paddleuptn.com

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Although summer was in full swing according to the calendar, the weather seemed not to get the message!  Rain was constant and almost ruined the July 4th Fireworks celebration at Riverfront Park.  The rain stopped just in time, but the sky was not clear at all.  Ruby, our Blue Doberman, slept through it all.

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We had a kicking summer at our own Rock Harbor Yacht Club.  We were glad to find the Brit Stokes Band available for our Jimmy Buffet theme party, and also the end-of-summer celebration Labor Day weekend.

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Since Nashville’s Cane Ridge High School opened its doors, I have had the pleasure to represent Ole South Properties by serving on the Advisory Board of the Academy of Architecture and Construction, along with many other business leaders.  It is really rewarding to see just how much a difference can be made when everyone works together.

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One of the Corporate Partners at Cane Ridge is The Rogers Group, who arranged for board members to visit their Louisville operations and become more familiar with their company and its operation.  Board members arrived at Nashville International Airport to join Darin Matson, of Rogers Group, on the company’s jet for the short flight to Louisville.

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We arrived in Louisville, just as rock stars do, to be escorted to the underground quarry operations.  One thousand feet below the ground is this mine, where approximately 10,000 tons of rock products are mined daily.  One thing for sure, we all take rock for granted!  Nashville is very fortunate to have The Rogers Group as a Corporate Citizen.

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Everyone on the Cane Ridge Academy of Architecture and Construction Board is excited that the academy just received National Accreditation!  The first of its kind in the country!  The 2013-2014 school year will be even better.

Meanwhile, the Summer of 2013 continues in Nashville, Tennessee, the greatest place to live in the world!

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Part 3 of the Summer of 2013 coming soon!

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019 & direct 615.593.6340; and VP Sales for Tennessee’s largest home builder, OleSouth.com, specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Gallatin, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee.

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The Summer of 2013 – Where did it go? (Part 1)

I’ve always considered Summer to officially start on Memorial Day and end on Labor Day.  I suppose it will always be that way for me.  The official dates of Summer for 2013 were June 21st through September 22nd, so that’s the period I will cover!

Beth and I started the Summer of 2013 off in Boston, taking a cruise on the Carnival Glory to St. John, New Brunswick and Halifax, Nova Scotia.  We had never ventured north on a cruise ship, and were very glad we did something different for a change.

This was the scene leaving Boston Harbor.

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If you haven’t cruised on a Carnival ship lately, you need to.  Almost all of the ships have now undergone extensive renovations.  Guy’s Burger Joint,  The Red Frog, Blue Iguana, and other venues have all been added to bring your cruising experience to new levels.

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And the staterooms are awesome as well.  For this cruise, we chose an 11th floor balcony.

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Making this cruise even better was knowing that one of our favorite crew members from past cruises, Nolan Villamor, would also be aboard the Glory.  I am confident Carnival will one day promote Nolan to Maitre’d!

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St. John, New Brunswick is a neat port city, where the St. John’s River flows into the Bay of Fundy.  The tide fluctuates as much as thirty feet daily, making the “reversing falls” a continual attraction.

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During Lobster Season, you will even find McLobster at the golden arches!  Yes, I had to try one, and it was surprisingly good.

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We bought tickets for the “Pink Bus,” where you can ride anytime the entire day for one price.  We ride out to the falls in the morning, and then back that afternoon to see the river flowing both ways!

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St. John is full of beautiful, historic buildings.  One fine residence displayed this plaque by its front door.

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Onward to the seaport of Halifax, Nova Scotia.  The harbor is very active, and historical buildings are everywhere!

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Pubs and eateries are everywhere along the harbor in Halifax.  You can also purchase a Harbor Ferry pass, where you can also access the city’s bus transit system all for one low fare.

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Thomas The Tug is another popular sight along the harbor.  You can purchase rides on it also!

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After departing Halifax, we would have a full day at sea before arriving in Boston.  Our cabin was the most forward cabin on the port side of Deck 11.  Would recommend this part of the ship to anyone.

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Boston Harbor is a beautiful place.  The sun was coming up as we entered.

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Cruising from the Port of Boston is a breeze.  Just a $20, 15 minute cab ride from the airport to the ship!  If you love cruising, but are somewhat tired of the Caribbean, give cruising out of Boston a try.  It was a refreshing change!

Next time, we will plan at least a day for sightseeing in Boston.  This year, we had to get back to Nashville for the rest of the Summer of 2013!  Be on the lookout for Part 2!

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Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340 and VP Sales for Tennessee’s largest home builder, OleSouth.com, specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Gallatin, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee.

 

 

Just like it was yesterday…..

A lot has happened over the past twelve years.  I have met survivors of the September 11 attacks, and I have met those that lost family and friends that day.  Everyone I meet has a story about September 11, 2001.

I remember it just like it was yesterday and still cannot believe that  twelve years ago today, Osama Bin Laden & company perpetrated the single largest attack ever on American soil.  They targeted the heart of our financial centers, and the heart of our military command.   Their plan was to bankrupt America and watch us tear ourselves apart from within.  (Note: Their plan is still in place)

Everyone remembers what they were doing that morning.  I was having a cup of coffee when the news broke out on the TV.  Then my phone rang.  It was by Broker/Sales Manager/Mentor, Sandi Sharpe.

Over the years, Sandi acquired many friends through working with international college students.  She was their family away from home.  She was “Mom” to many.   One family, from Uzbekistan, bought a new Ole South home and became extended family to all of us.

The grandmother of this family had spent the summer in Nashville to help her grandchildren get properly settled in their new home.  She knew no English whatsoever, but was very easy to communicate with.  After all, a smile means the same thing in every language.  All of us loved her, and her family, dearly.

She was returning home to Uzbekistan on September 11th on the first flight to New York from Nashville.  She was armed with basic signs that Sandi made to hold up when she arrived in NYC.  With her smile, and those signs, she would never be lost…. well, as long as the plane landed in NYC.

But it didn’t.  The flight was routed to Raleigh, NC.  She did not understand any of the announcements, and only had her signs, which were useless in Raleigh.  The airline personnel at the gate calmed her and checked her in a nearby hotel, but none of us knew that yet.  Sandi was on the phone many hours before we knew the situation and that she was safe.  In the meantime, she is in a strange location, in a hotel room, knowing only what pictures were shown on TV.

The grandson was loading up for a drive to Raleigh, which probably was not the safest thing for an olive-skin immigrant, with a name too long to pronounce, to be doing that day.  Rumors of fuel shortages and curfews abound.  There was nothing else to do but go with him to Raleigh.

Long story short, I will never forget the look on the grandmother’s face when she opened the hotel door and saw us standing there.  She was in tears pointing at the TV.  She had been terrified not knowing where she was, or why she was there.  That fear turned to joy and relief as we loaded her things into the car and headed back to Nashville!

That day, America pulled together.  Democrats and Republicans joined together without unnecessary drama and rallied around our President.  America would prevail.

At least for a while.  Then we would eventually forget.

Remember, the intention of Osama Bin Bastard and Company was to bankrupt our country and watch us destroy ourselves from within.  They did not have a specific time frame in mind.   Even with Osama dead, his movement and ambitions seem to be alive and well.

Fast-Forward to today and look around.  What do you see?  Democrats and Republicans constantly battling each other.  America debating involvement in yet another foreign conflict.  We are slowly emerging from a recession that did not discriminate.  Everyone has been affected, financially and otherwise.

The United States has always served in the role of “world police” for humanity?  We have always ended up being the “protector” of human rights in world conflicts.  If not us, who will be?  Russia is hardly qualified to sincerely step up to the role.  Maybe it is their turn now?  That’s a question I cannot answer but I do know that world peace is a very complicated objective with many moving parts.

Where would the world be if Saddam Hussein had been allowed to remain in power?  Where would the world be if Osama Bin Laden was still alive?  Great questions to ponder.   I can say that if Adolph Hitler had been taken out when he invaded Poland, World War II would have been averted.

Regardless of your political preference, now is the time to encourage elected officials to put politics aside and pull this country together.   This country has the resolve to fix our problems and its not supposed to be about ”who will get the credit or blame.”   We don’t elect people to find blame, we elect people to find solutions… or at least that is supposed to be the plan.

It is our obligation not to forget what happened to our country on September 11th.  It is also our obligation to remember the sacrifices of countless people, that day, and every day since.  If we choose not to remember, Osama Bin Bastard & Company wins.  We will be bankrupt and will have destroyed our country from within.

You know, we are still having tough times in this country but until you see people wading off of Miami Beach preparing to swim to Cuba, there’s still time to get it right.

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340 and VP Sales for Tennessee’s largest home builder, OleSouth.com, specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Gallatin, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

Communication – does it have to be so hard?

Thanks to technology, there are so many ways for us to communicate efficiently with each other.  All we used to have were the telephone, the US Mail, and a personal visit… and before that, smoke signals.

Communication

With communication made easier than ever, why does it have to be so hard?  Are we really THAT busy that we cannot even acknowledge someone trying to communicate with us?

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My Dad used to always tell me….  “If YOU cannot take care of your own business, SOMEONE ELSE will!”

 

With that said, I’ve got a few calls to return!  I bet you do too!

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Independence Day Celebration in Nashville – Fireworks on the River

The Fourth of July is upon us and it doesn’t seem like summer has hardly started yet! If you like fireworks, there is no better place to be in the country Thursday evening than right here in Nashville!

The celebrations at Nashville’s Riverfront Park start at noon and a variety of acts will be playing throughout the afternoon and the Family Fun Zone will be open. At 6:45 pm the main river stage events kick off with performances by Striking Matches, Barry Scott, Keb’ Mo’, The Band Perry and The Nashville Symphony, who will accompany the fireworks display at 9:50 pm.  It is all a part of LET FREEDOM RING 2013!

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For a complete list of activities and more information, please CLICK HERE.   Nashville’s July 4th celebration is always rated among the top in the nation and 2013 will be no exception!

They will have fireworks left over, so another fantastic celebration evening is planned for Friday night, July 5th starting at 6:30 pm with the fireworks display at 9:30 pm.  Performing Friday evening is Chris Mulkey and Deluxe followed by Ten Out Of Tenn.

This year’s celebration will be somewhat different for area boaters who like to bring their boats from Old Hickory Lake to downtown Nashville.  Old Hickory Lock will close each evening at 10:00 pm.  Boats that are not at the lock by 9:15 pm will not be able to lock through until the next morning.  CLICK HERE for the full story.

It has been said that the Nashville Convention Visitors Bureau has offered to compensate the Federal Government to keep the lock open until midnight.  It is also rumored that the lock operators even volunteered their time for the effort also.  It is obvious the government wants boaters to feel the pain of the sequestration.

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Boaters are very creative, resilient, and resourceful.   If they still want to view fireworks, they will be there.  The newly renovated Rock Harbor Marina and Blue Moon Restaurant downstream from Riverfront will also have accomodations for boats wanting to spend the night.  Call 615.356.1111 for information.

 

The public docking facilities on both sides of the river downtown are closed for the period July 1st through July 5th, reopening July 6th.  Former Mayor Bill Purcell started this practice of slapping area boaters in the face during his administration.  Maybe one of these days Nashville will further embrace its Riverfront and the boating public that uses it.

But until that happens, we’re going to have fun anyway!

 

Happy Independence Day!

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Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new home sales in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Gallatin, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee.

 

Remember the Blue Moon? It’s back – and better than ever!

Just about everyone remembers The Blue Moon, the popular floating bar and grill at Rock Harbor Marina on the Cumberland River in West Nashville.

The May 2010 flood brought an end to the old Blue Moon, along with many of the docks at Rock Harbor Marina. Since that time, the marina has been rebuilding, and that included the addition of a BRAND NEW BLUE MOON RESTAURANT.

BlueMoonPatio

One thing that made the previous Blue Moon a success was the atmosphere. The new Blue Moon is even better. You still walk onto a floating barge and down a dock to enter the restaurant! No worries, there are emergency exits and the facility is handicapped accessible.

BlueMoonFountain

There are indoor and outdoor dining areas, but also roll up doors to open things up a bit!

BlueMoonInterior

Large flat-screen TVs adorn the walls – perfect for keeping up with all the news and sports!

BlueMoonBar

We recently had the priviledge of sampling many items that will be featured on the menu. Two words immediately come to mind….. damn good!

The Blue Moon is now open to the public Wednesdays through Sundays and is certain to top the list of hot spots in Nashville. One visit and you will see why! Tom, Glenn, and Dougie Ray have put together a great team to make your floating dining experience enjoyable!

You can get there by car or boat! Located at Rock Harbor Marina, 525 Basswood Avenue, Nashville, TN 37205, or Cumberland River Mile Marker 175.

For the latest information, visit their website www.bluemoongrille.com

If you come by boat, there will soon be brand new covered slips of all sizes to park your boat in!

RockHarborNewDocks

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Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019 direct 615.593.6340. Specializing in new home sales in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Gallatin, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee.

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Honduras 2013 (Part 2) – Everything changes.

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Every year, Rotarians from District 6760 and friends visit the southern region of Honduras with plans to make a difference in the lives of as many Hondurans as possible.

For 2013, seven represented The Rotary Club of Spring Hill & Thompson Station TN for this year’s projects.  Attending were Les Bosarge, Huntly Gordon, Keith Clodfelter, Trey Lewis, Ann Bassett, Sharon Fuller, and Sara Johnson, a member of Brentwood Rotary.

During the seven day visit, one part of our group continually wired homes in remote villages while others participated in activities at local schools, as well as a dental clinic in coordination with the Choluteca Rotary Club.

Every year, there are big changes to the landscape of southern Honduras.  The largest shopping mall in Central America is located just across the street from the Tegucigalpa airport.

 

 

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But the greatest difference and change is the lives of the people.  Upon arriving, we learned some great news from a past project.  Back in 2011, Huntly Gordon presented a workbelt and tools worth over $500 to Douglas, an unemployed local villager of Jayacayan.  We learned that Douglas showed up at a construction jobsite with his tools and was hired to be an electrician, and now has his own home and family.

After getting our assignment, we rolled onward to San Marcos De Colon to check into the Hotel Barcelona which would be our home for the next five nights.  We have stayed there many times, so it was almost like going home!

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My room at the Hotel Barcelona.  Very nice, at $15 per night USDm breakfast included.

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There was even hot water!  Check out this apparatus that is not UL approved!

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And our view from the Hotel Barcelona

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The next day, we hit the ground running to bring electricity to families in remote villages near San Marcos de Colon such as this family.

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Change.  It is everywhere you look.  At home, at work, in southern Honduras.  Over the next week, you’ll see just how much change can be made – one life at a time!