Valentine’s Day weekend was wonderful.  Friday I got off work at 3:oo PM (because Monday was a holiday!), and then we headed 50 minutes West to Clarksville, Tennessee, to see one of my all time favorite bands – – Sanctus Real.  I saw Sanctus for the first time almost four years ago at a festival in Illinois called Agape Fest.  It was right between albums two and three.  I loved them instantly.  They were great musicians, good performers, and their music stood out to me.  Plus, their first album cd case shows you how to make a great foil hat, and how can you not be cooler than that?

jg  mw

sr2  sr1

Anyhoo, I had not seen them since (besides three songs at Winter Jam a couple years ago), and album three and four were both great, so I have been dying to see them again.  Clarksville was close enough for me that I couldn’t pass up the opportunity.  The added bonus was that Jason Gray was opening up for them (and Matthew West), and we’re big fans of Jason, too.  Jeff has had the opportunity to interview him and keep in touch, so it was great for them to finally reconnect and me meet him.  He has such a great story, is a funny guy and is just super talented.  It was just him, a guitar and his great voice, and we didn’t think he needed anything else up there with him.

Saturday, on actual Valentine’s Day, Jeff and I swapped gifts and he brought me breakfast in bed (thank you McD’s for the Egg McMuffins).  Jeff got me beautiful tulips (my favorite!) and Whitman’s chocolate (sooo good!).  I got Jeff his second love – Colbie Caillat.  It was only because I am so confident that I’m his first love that I was able to give him that. 



Then Jeff’s friend from Indy and the lady hung out with us most of the day.  Felipe (aka Phil) was a friend Jeff made while studying abroad in Spain during the fall semester of his junior year of college.  Jeff has stayed in touch with several from this time in his life, and I understand why by the stories that he tells.  What’s funny about Felipe is that until about a week before he came, I thought he was French.  I had never ever heard him referred to as Phil.  Sure, I hear Dustin and Jeff go by Diego and Pepe all the time, but I know them.  So I knew better, that those were just Spanish names.  I guess I should’ve known better about Felipe, but I had never heard the name Phil.  Ever.

So, Phil lives and works in Indy at a bank (he doesn’t actually live in the bank) and as a lacrosse coach.  So it’s not too far that a visit to Nashville was totally possible.  They stayed with some of his other friends, but left Saturday to us. And I’m so glad Michelle came with him, because even though Jeff is really my valentine, you’d think with the way Felipe and Pepe said hello that they’d be the couple… which left me and Michelle.


Seriously, though, they were great company.  We had a blast showing them some sights of the city, playing Mad Gab and drinking expensive soda (just so we could have “rights” to the table we were occupying) at a rotating bar in the Opryland Hotel.  We had dinner at Cabana, where Felipe made our waitress work for every penny of her tip.  If only she could’ve really produced that volcanic chocolate cake with an exploding center…  And we finished the evening off with gelato.  The day was full of stories from Spain, and even though I’ve heard many several times, it was great to hear them tag-teamed with Felipe this time and even hear a few that didn’t sound so familiar.  If it’s one thing that my husband can guarantee, it’s a great, sometimes unbelievable story.  And 99.9% of them really are true, people.

So thanks to Phil and Michelle for making Valentine’s 2009 rock, and we hope to see them again soon!