So here we are in Memphis Tennessee. When the idea of a road trip sprung into existence between Jensen and I, I immediately had a few places that I knew I would definitely want to go for some reason or another. It could have been good music, famous culture or just somewhere I had heard a lot about through general word of mouth and TV & film. Memphis was a combination of Jack Daniel and his whiskey, Marc Cohn and his song 'Walking in Memphis' and of course the King, Elvis.
I must say it did not disappoint from what I saw of the city.
We met our friend Chephra, who worked at camp last year, and who knows a good deal more about Memphis than we do. So she came with us into the city and tolerated my incessant picture and video taking. We started with a short walk across Union Ave. and Beale St. Both of which feature in Marc Cohn's song, so I was being a right tourist. Beale St. was amazing. It had been blocked off to public traffic at each end and was swarming with locals and tourists alike. Every ten feet you walked you were introduced to a new sound from the next cafe or bar, everywhere seemed to have live music. We stopped at a place called Dyer's Burgers, famous since 1912. It had been on Jensen's food list for some time now and he was eager to sample the famed burgers. It seemed each burger was a ball of meat to begin with, that was bashed flat by a designated burger basher (using a hammer and spatula) only to be thrown into a large frying pan full of oil. The result was rather tasty. If we had longer here, we would have come back in the evening and gone to a few bars.
At each end of Beale there were Horses with carriages awaiting tourists, much like the bicycles you see with seats in London. I took a picture mainly for my Mum, I'm sure you would have loved to see them Mother. We were all pretty hungry so we made our way to a Restaurant called Rendezvous, which was also on the aforementioned food list. On our way we walked along the Mississippi river for a short while. It was very high, as the recent news may have made you aware. On the roads leading down to the river there was debris from a time when the river had been many tens of feet higher. Also, I saw a plaque on the wall with the name John Grisham at the top. It had a paragraph about the famous author, I thought my Dad would like to see it (I still haven't finished 'The Associate' by the way Dad).
Rendezvous was extremely busy, and after a 35 minute wait the call for 'Jensen, party of 3' was heard over the P.A. system. In we went to be served by a friendly southerner by the name of Fred. I had the full rack of ribs with beans and 'slaw. The ribs were cooked on the traditional southern BBQ way; very slowly using the smoke from a specific wood and now added sauces to bring flavour. They beat a Frankie and Bennie's anyday, by a long way.
It was then time for Graceland, surprisingly far from Downtown Memphis. There isn't much to write about Graceland to be honest. It was too late to go on a tour, and I'm not sure if that is what I would have spent $40 on anyway. We all wrote our (camp) names on the wall, as had many thousands before us, and then it was off to bad once again.
So again, in review, Beale St. was one of the coolest streets I have ever seen. It would have been a great place to spend a few days and nights, as there were so many places to go and see live music and eat. Live music seems to be a theme in the cities we are choosing to visit, something I am glad about.
So far our trip is going as planned and fun has been had at each stop along the way.
Next stop, Ocoee River.