Bacon on the Bookshelf

Savory picks for the free range reader

Summer Reading Special: He Said/She Said featuring Richard and Barbara Keith Payne

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Please stop in at Bacon for the next few weeks to enjoy summer interviews with some of Nashville’s most interesting couples – what they’re up to, what they remember about summers past, what they’re reading right now!  Richard and Barbara Keith Payne open the series.

Richard Payne is, among other things, a purveyor of wine as owner of The Wine Chap and the most delightful of Englishmen.  He has a gentle and quiet demeanor and a very appealing, proper manner in addition to that killer accent.  He’s also positively brilliant at helping you find just the right bottle of Rosé for your summer party!  You’ll often find him supporting one of Nashville’s fundraisers by donating his time, expertise, and wine.  How in the world did he land in Nashville 21 years ago?  By marrying one of Nashville’s finest, Barbara Keith Payne.  Barbara Keith is one of those lovely Southern women who really inhabit their double names.  Nashville born and bred, Vanderbilt-educated, Barbara Keith will make you laugh; she’ll cheer you up; she’ll sympathize; she’ll cry with you; she’ll make you a good dinner if that’s what you need.  She’s often to be found juggling kids, her work as a real estate broker, and volunteer responsibilities.  You’ll have to ask Barbara Keith and Richard yourself what they think about Brexit; it might not be fit to print.  

From Richard and Barbara Keith:

What do you love about summer in the States?

Richard:  The temperature here will always be consistently over 80 degrees.  In England, the temp can vary from 80 to 50!

BK:  Nashville summer smells a certain way to me.  Maybe it’s bug spray and sunscreen!  I love the pace of summer.  A great break from the rigidity and schedules of the school year.  I try to get as much time in as I can at my family’s house in Beersheba Springs TN.  Cooler there and very slow pace.

How is summer different across the Pond?

unnamed-4Richard:  It is certainly cooler.  The children don’t go away to camp like they do here.  Our summer school break is much shorter.

BK:  English summers are so much cooler and since they don’t seem to have mosquitos you can throw open doors and windows and enjoy the outside inside.  Also, it stays light so late.  We are often sitting in the Paynes’ garden until 9:30 at night.

What did you love about summer as a kid?

Richard:  No school of course.  I loved to watch summer sports – tennis at Wimbledon and cricket.

BK:  Summer for me was always about 6 weeks at Camp Nakanawa from age 11 to 17.  It was a huge part of my formative years and to this day I adore that magical place.  So happy to get to share it with our daughter Susanna who is going for a month this summer.

Memorable summer job as a teen?

Richard:  I worked in the toy department of the local department store, Bentalls in Kingston upon Thames.

BK:  Since I was always at camp, I did a lot of babysitting and odd jobs in the summers before and after camp.  I also did a lot of “hanging out” at Sequoia, Mr. Gatti’s and the Game Room on Bandywood.

Chardonnay or Rosé? 

Richard:  In the summer I will always reach for the Rosé first!

BK:  Summertime is all about the Rosé.  And the best selection is at The Wine Chap, NOT at your local grocery store(!).  I am not a chardonnay-hater.  It is trendy to hate oak-heavy chardonnay.  It has its time and place too!  The ultimate summer beverage is ice cold Rosé.  I also enjoy an occasional Moscow Mule – Richard makes a mean one with bitters and a ton of fresh lime.

You’ve got a week at any beach on the planet. Where?

Richard:  Very unoriginal but I do like Rosemary Beach.

BK:  Ohh that is hard.  I love everything about 30A (except traffic) and think it has one of the best beaches on the planet.  My favorite family destination is Rosemary Beach.  Anywhere on the planet though?  I would love to go to one of those remote resorts with no TV’s and huts over the water in Bali or Fiji and just read books for a week.

If you were getting a tattoo, what would it be (and where)?

Richard:  I can say I cannot think of any situation where I would get a tattoo.

BK:  I am not the tattoo type and I KNOW Richard is not.

Best summertime restaurant in Nashville?

Richard:  I have really enjoyed Josephine lately.

BK:  We love to take the kids to The Pharmacy in East Nashville.  Blue Moon is a fun “destination restaurant” and the patio at Table 3 is fun on a summer evening.

What are you reading this summer?

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Richard: Sound Man, an autobiography by Glyn Johns who produced all the famous bands from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s

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BK: Reading The Sympathizer for Book Club and on my list are Euphoria and The Life We Bury, recommended by my mother who has read everything on the planet I swear.

What would you recommend to a friend as summer reading?

Richard:  AA Gill Is Away, by AA Gill.  He is a London-based writer and critic who writes about his travels.  I love his acerbic wit.

BK:  I would recommend my friend Virginia’s blog www.greatbeachbooks.com – also Girl on the Train and Me Before You as they are both being made into movies.  Also, not a book but I have just binged watched both seasons of “Grace & Frankie” on Netflix.  Jane Fonda and Lily Tomlin are just hilarious.

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19 Comments

  1. That was a fun read this morning. Looking forward to more!

  2. Oh the nostalgia – Mr Gatti’s and the Game Room!! Fun interview!

  3. Very interesting. Now I’m curious what their son Jamie is reading this summer.

  4. two of my favorite/favourite people! and top of their game in their respective professions. charming interview!

  5. Enjoyed this interview very much and the suggestions for my next summer book. I also dropped my youngest daughter, Dottie, at Camp Nakanawa yesterday — I hope they are enjoying some reading during rest time!

  6. Wonderful interview!!! I, too, love the Wine Chap, Camp Nakanawa and the PAYNES!

  7. I can’t stop reading this Bacon from two of my favorite people . May I use that fab family photo for my Christmas card ? Shopping list for today: rosé and the life we bury.

  8. Great post by two greats!!!

  9. I’m dreaming of a good tattoo for Richard. Love BK, RIchard and bacon.

  10. What a treat! Well done Richard and BK!

  11. BK and Richard are so charming! Excellent interview, Jennifer! Xo

  12. Love these two!! And oh, how I miss that Mr. Gatti’s!!!

  13. Love this! Perfect example how opposites attract!!! Just dropped Caroline off at Nakanawa Monday for the first of hopefully many summers! Thanks for writing this Jennifer!

  14. Loved reading about the Paynes! BK and Richard, we adore you.

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