Thursday, April 09, 2015

Four in One Day

Yesterday was a four state day: Tennessee, Arkansas, Missouri, and Illinois. But let me start with our morning in Tennessee since it held a highlight of our trip which was a tour of Graceland. The King certainly lives on in the hearts of many people. The tour is a well orchestrated event. About every 15 minutes groups of about 2 dozen people are shuttled from the parking and gift shops to the mansion, everyone equipped with an Ipad and headphones. Young people in blue shirts are at every juncture of the tour, ready to redirect anyone who would be so foolish as to try and go upstairs in the mansion which we were told was; "Elvis' sanctuary in life and a respected space even after his death" and their watchful eyes would catch any surreptitious souvenir collecting. We went on a ten o'clock tour on a Wed. and we were leaving by 11:45. Our package was called the Platinum Tour and was not the most expensive but really was sufficient for us. 


Beale Street, Birthplace of the Blues

You can view all of my Graceland and Beale St. pictures here, on my Flickr account. 

After one last taste of Memphis BBQ pork we were on the road again. We continued to see more and more dogwoods in bloom, but less leaves opened on trees. Now, thanks to my friend Theresa, I know that these pretty trees are called Redbuds:

We took Hwy. 55 up through the boot heel of Arkansas and I guess my prejudices are showing when I tell you that the first things I noticed as we crossed the Mississippi were two trailer parks and one salvage yard and lots and lots of semi-trucks. Then something I never thought I would witness; my usually cool headed sensible driver (my husband) gave a truck driver who had hugged our bumper by about 2 feet for several miles, the finger. Even outside of this road trip, I never knew him to do that! Somewhere in Missouri we connected up with Hwy 57 N and continued on to here, the middle of nowhere in the flat Mississippi floodplain town of Marion, Ill. where there is nothing, absolutely nothing of interest (except the incredibly deluxe sports center called The Hub), just one mall after another and lots of generic motels along the highway. It is a windy place and a tornado weather alert was in effect yesterday evening and today. Nobody in this town likes change either, the mayor is 88 and he has been the mayor for 40 years! In fact he won the last election by a landslide! So today I will take no pictures. It was a day to do our laundry, wash the car, and maybe take in a movie. 

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