Saturday, July 26, 2008

Because I couldn't stay away

With the departure of some Little Knoxvillians, I too will be helping around the Wigshop to fill the void, though we know that's not possible in Stan's case (by the way, check out the memorial to the Wigshop founder over on the right sidebar). I'm the Modern Gal, split personality of the gal who keeps shop over at The Modern Gal blog.

I've recently returned to Knoxville after doing a year in Chattanooga and three in Nashville. I also spent 18 years of my life in Memphis, so if you ever have the urge to compare the virtues and vices of each region of Tennessee I'm your gal. Just know that when it comes to barbecue, Memphis always wins.

In the couple of months since I've been back, I've learned a couple things about Knoxville that I never knew as an undergrad at UT -- namely that there is a world outside of the Strip and West Town Mall -- who knew?

I think I may be the only Little Knoxvillian who resides somewhere west of World's Fair Park, namely because I have a 50-pound mutt who needs her space. Because I don't spend as much time downtown, I'll probably be covering the Bearden beat here at the Wigshop.

And since it seems to be a tradition around here, here are some of my favorite things about Knoxville, old friends and new discoveries:

1. Local shopping, namely Bliss, Vagabondia, Earth to Old City and the Yee-Haw shop. The difference between Knoxville's boutique-like shopping and every other city's: it's actually affordable, so we can keep them in business.

2. The Tomato Head, Downtown Grill and Brewery, Calhoun's on the River and the many sushi options. I could probably limit my diet to these restaurants for the rest of my life and never want for more.

3. Free night and weekend parking downtown. This is vital to our social lives, kids. And it's not common in other cities.

4. Greenways, parks and proximity to mountains. You will often find me and my 50-pound mutt strolling one of Knoxville's fantastic greenways.

5. Turkey Creek. Just kidding. See also: How NOT to build a shopping development.