“Walkin’ in Memphis…”

Oh Memphis, I will always love you.

View outside my window.
View outside my window.

In all honesty I didn’t do a damn thing in Memphis except stroll Beale again. There was another museum that I wanted to check out, but the heat, the exhaustion of two weeks on the road, etc etc and I was happy to visit the familiar shops and bars of Beale. I went back to sleep after dropping off Cait and didn’t head out until 10am.

I hit the Peabody first to see if there was anything that I *needed* from their gift shop. Didn’t find anything I couldn’t live without. When I came back out onto Union, I was approached by a homeless guy asking if I needed help finding my way. Unlike the homeless in Seattle that just sit with a cup out hoping for change, the homeless here offer to show you how to get to Beale, Civil Rights Museum, etc in exchange for a few bucks. I said I didn’t need any help, so he asked if I had some spare change (which I didn’t – change or $1’s) so I said sorry and started toward Beale. He started walking along side and asked where I was from. We walked and talked until we hit Beale (at which point I learned his name was Richard). I was heading toward Starbucks, so I offered coffee and a muffin if he wanted to join me (he asked if he could have a dollar instead, but I reminded him that I didn’t have cash, was just going to use my starbucks card). He agreed but refused to go inside. So I got our drinks (he didn’t want a muffin) and then we sat outside. He told me all about Memphis – most of which I already knew. Told me what areas not to go by myself (which is really everywhere outside of a few block radius of my hotel – and yes, I know this). We didn’t talk for very long, but he was very nice, polite and left with a ‘God bless you’.

drinkI had lunch at BB kings and around late-afternoon headed back to my hotel. And I didn’t leave. I ordered room service for dinner and then contemplated heading to the Peabody for their rooftop party, but then the rain rolled in again so I went to bed early (by trip standards). It was delightful.

I was up at 8:30 this morning and got my stuff ready to go. It was about 10 before I pulled away from my most favorite hotel. It’s not the fanciest, but something about it. Every single interaction with staff leaves me with a smile on my face. When I ordered room service last night, we were chit-chatting about the tornado siren the previous night and I told her that it really hit home after OKC. Her hand flew to her mouth and she was like, “Oh Lawd no… they just like to be dramatic around here. I haven’t seen a tornado since I was three. And it was a tiny thing!” Then the woman at the front desk was joking around and as I turned to leave she said “Oh honey-child, you have a safe trip, okay? And you’d better come back to see me!”

Just delightful.

From Memphis I headed east toward Nashville. I skirted the outside of the city and went to the home of the 7th President Andrew Jackson. Was a delightful tour with people dressed for his time period. It wasn’t exactly the Monticello and while the grounds were lovely, it was a bit dreary as a rain storm moved through. The house itself was small, but lovely inside. The wallpaper from Paris was beautiful and the original hardwood floors put our floors to shame (sorry Dad).

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One of the things I really loved, was the collection of different trees from where he served during the War of 1812. I also loved that his grand daughter lived in the house until it became a museum in… whatever year that was… and was able to help them place things exactly how they had been when he lived.

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From there I slowly made my way up toward the outskirts of Louisville, Ky. I didn’t arrive until 7:30ish. I made a quick stop at Wal-Mart for a set of tennis balls. Ever since that white-knuckle drive after the tornado, my shoulders have been crazy tight. Best $2.28 I ever spent. I spent 15 minutes laying on those and already I feel much better. My hotel has a delicious amount of brochures out front so I’ve been thumbing through things I might like to see. It’ll be a busy weekend in the Louisville/Lexington area, for sure!

2 thoughts on ““Walkin’ in Memphis…”

  1. Leslie

    Enjoying reading about your trip! Last October a friend and I flew from CA to TN, where we also visited Memphis (Beale St & the Peabody included), as well as Andrew Jackson’s home. I cannot tell begin to express how much I enjoyed the trip,and following along with you is bringing wonderful memories. Next time may I suggest Eastern TN? We were there in late October and the trees were in full change. It was incredible! Being from CA, I haven’t really experienced US History like I did on that trip. Continue having fun!

    1. I drove through a bit of Eastern, TN and loved what I saw. A few years back I took 6 weeks to loop around the US and spent more time on the East Coast. PA in October is amazing – color wise. It looks like the hills were on fire with the shading of the reds, oranges and yellows.

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