In late September 2000, I was making the move back home to Tennessee after having lived in Orlando, working for Disney World for eight months. So I asked my good friend Richie if he'd be interested in helping me move, and he said yes. We planned out a long weekend in Nashville and the surrounding area, including playing in Atlanta for a while, a trip through Chattanooga and a jaunt up to Kentucky Kingdom in Louisville.
We left Orlando after I got off work on Wednesday and drove the 7 hours up to Atlanta, barely making any stops except to take some pictures at the state border. We stayed at a Sleep Inn right next to Six Flags over Georgia in hopes that we could get an early start at all the coasters the next morning...
Richie called the info line, only to find out that Six Flags was only open on weekends. D'oh! We hadn't even thought about that it might be closed! We come from a place where only a hurricane can shut down a theme park. So there we were in Atlanta with no plans at all on what to do. We went to the hotel lobby and perused the rack of pamphlets and decided that the World of Coke sounded like an awesome place to go.
The next morning we got up and headed to downtown Atlanta. I'd never spent that much time in Atlanta, Olympics aside, and neither had Richie. But once we got downtown, he was driving around like he knew exactly where everything was. I had to make fun of him the rest of the trip for it, calling him the human road atlas and other assorted names.
We wanted to kill a little bit of time before we went to the World of Coke, so we hopped on a Marta train to see where it would take us. The airport sounded like fun, so we stayed on until the last stop then disembarked. It was like Fort Knox trying to get back to the arrival gates, so we just hung around the main terminal for a while. Pretty soon we got bored, so we bought drinks and took the train back to downtown.
After a bit of comic relief upon finding the street of my namesake, we continued walking, looking for something interesting. I made a brief pit stop at a Starbucks to buy a new tin of After Coffee Mints, while Richie stayed outside and enjoyed a smokey treat. Soon we came across a Macys and went in for a bit of high end shopping. Of course, I had all of a buck seventy-two in my pocket, so I didn't get anything, but Richie found a nice silver ring that didn't break the bank.