Road Trip

12:54 PM

My mother and I had an excellent road trip to Texas. We saw lots of interesting sights, spent a day in Memphis, Tennessee, and got to see scenic and delightful Fort Hood, Texas, where PFC Sibling is stationed.

Unfortunately, I only took pictures in Memphis.

To be fair, the best road signs were observed at unholy hours of the morning, and stopping to photograph them would not have been advisable. My favorite sign was somewhere in Connecticut and advertised the State Veteran's Home and Dinosaur Park.

The first day, we drove from New Hampshire to Roanoake, Virginia. And when we found a hotel where, praise Jesus, they let us check in early, we immediately sacked out for a couple of hours. The next day we drove from Roanoake to Memphis, where we checked in to the Heartbreak Hotel. That, my friends, was a rather surreal experience.

We could see the pool from our window:

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And we had pictures of The King in our room:

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We had a sandwich and a beer in the Jungle Room Lounge downstairs. They play Elvis concert footage from 3:00-11:00, and there's a sign informing guests that, while they might want to watch Elvis concerts all night, other guests need their rest for their big Elvis plans the next day.

Mom and I went to bed on the early side rather than watch the 24-hour Elvis movie channel so that we could be well-rested for our Elvis plans.

We went to Graceland:

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You can take pictures at Graceland, but you're not allowed to use flash photography. Most of my inside pictures, therefore, are crap. Graceland was interesting, and I learned a lot about Elvis, but in some ways it seemed, well, small. I've been to McMansions that are larger. But they didn't have green shag carpet on the walls and ceiling.

And they certainly didn't have this many gold records:

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Or awesome jumpsuits:

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We saw Elvis' grave:

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And then we decided that we had had enough Elvis, so we found another hotel.

We ended up at the Westin Memphis Beale Street Hotel. It's located right behind Beale Street, which is the most visited destination in Tennessee. The location was to die for and the hotel was wonderful. In fact, I hope that when I die, Heaven is like a luxury hotel.

Mom and I ate Barbecue on Beale Street at the Blues City Cafe. It was, quite possibly, the best barbecue I have ever eaten in my life. But don't tell my father-in-law. Or my husband. We also went to the Gibson Guitar factory, which was right across the street from our hotel. The tour is fascinating. I highly recommend it.

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After the Gibson Tour, we went across the street to the Museum of Rock & Soul. It's a Smithsonian project, and the exhibits are interesting. But, alas, they don't allow you to take pictures. So I can only tell you about Isaac Hayes' mink coats and his diamond and emerald piano watch. The tour is a self-paced audio tour, and includes lots of music. It was well done, but by this point, we were getting tired. So we went back up to Beale Street where you can't spit without hitting a blues musician.

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That was in W.C. Handy park. We listened to the band for a little while, then decided it was time for a drink. Now, Beale Street looks to be a non-stop party. You can get your drinks to go. We saw signs that said things like, Caution, 30 feet till next cocktail and adverts for 100 ounce Hurricanes (Save Money! Share with your friends!) We went to B.B. King's bar and had a couple of girly drinks. (I had a Stagger Lee. It was blue. Mom had a Lucille. It was green.) By that point, it was about time to think of dinner. And, since we had had our barbecue earlier in the day, we ended up having dinner at the hotel. Which was excellent.

The next morning, we got up and drove the rest of the way to Texas. The only notable occurrence was lunch at a Chic-fil-a in Texarkana. We don't have Chic-fil-a up here. And, you know? It's a shame. That is a mighty fine chicken sandwich.

We got to scenic Killeen, Texas at about 5:30, checked into the hotel, got a guest pass for the Army Post, and picked up my sister. She was happy to see her car. And us, too, I suppose. Unfortunately, the Army hasn't sped her up at all. By the time we saw her I was very ready for dinner. But, alas, that took a while. Mostly, because she came down to meet us in uniform, and we didn't really need to go out to dinner all dressed up Army-like.

We went out for steak, and had a nice meal. Then, we spent the next day running errands with the PFC Sibling, which, while not the most exciting thing ever, was fun and needed doing. We got to explore the post which has streets with names like Tank Destroyer Blvd. Air Force bases have much tamer street names. At least the bases we lived on growing up.

And then, we came back. It was a long, hectic week, but lots of fun. I hope to go back to Memphis with The Beloved at some point. I think he'd really enjoy it. I'm still really tired, but have discovered that's not due to the trip but something else entirely, so, we're dealing. The fact that summer is rearing its ugly head isn't helping my mood any, but my sainted husband appears to have gotten our air conditioner to work at least a little bit. God bless him.

Anyhow. More to follow as I have the energy. I've done a little knitting, when I have the energy and finished off a pair of wee socks and started the Child's French Socks, though I may redo the (completed) foot on one as it's just a smidge too short. Unfortunately, no photos right now and I'm too lazy to pull out knitting and cameras. Next week, perhaps?

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