Saturday, July 22, 2017

Southern Road Trip 2017

We started in Memphis. It was crazy during the day, and crazier at night. I'd been looking forward to this trip for so long, and it was fantastic! 

My husband's first mistake was playing "Walking In Memphis" for me before we hit the road. I proceeded to sing it multiple times a day, for the next six days. He loved it. This is where "my feet were walking ten feet off of Beale". Sorry y'all, get used to it.

I liked Beale even better at night. I sang karaoke for the first time after two shots and a plate of jalapeno wings. damn. 

I felt so at home here. The Deep South is so laid back, and I never heard an angry word spoken. Buskers played and people danced. It smelled like barbecue, beer, smoke, and rain. If you've never been, please go. If you haven't been and you think you know how the South is, go and get rid of your misconceptions. 

Day two, we visited the National Civil Rights Museum. 

I think every American should make this trip at least once. I also think Dr. King would be heartbroken at the state of our nation today.

The room at The Lorraine Motel where Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was shot and killed. 
Outside of the museum, Jacqueline Smith has been protesting for over twenty years. She believes that the museum is a disgraceful use of tax payer dollars and that Dr. King would have rather that money gone to help poor families in Memphis.

We walked across the street from the museum to devour mass quantities of ribs. Go to Texas for brisket, go to MEMPHIS for RIBS. 

Back to Beale St. the next day. We also walked along the Mississippi near downtown. There had been severe thunderstorms a few days earlier and power was out to over 80,000 residents.

This right here....this part of the trip was pure joy. I felt like a little kid walking into Sun Studio.

Supposedly, Elvis used this mic.

Supposedly U2 used this drum kit. 

Supposedly these guys were famous. ;-)
Seriously?? All four in one room!? Can you name them?

The studio is still in use, and they haven't upgraded or redone anything. It smelled like 1955.

Husband was determined to go to Graceland, and I was determined not to. I thought it was gross, honestly, to worship a man like that. But he convinced me to go, and it was every bit as bizarre as I'd imagined.

The living room

The kitchen. This room smelled like 1975. Look how ordinary it is! I like it.

This is the Jungle Room, and that's Lisa Marie's stuffed animal in the chair. It smelled like old shag carpet.

We left Memphis and drove into the Mississippi Delta and I marveled at the sights.  It felt like a dream. Please, go sometime. 
This is the Yalobusha River in Greenwood, Mississippi. I was mesmerized.
                Just a few notes:    1. The Mississippi (spoken) accents are swirly and sugary. 
 2. The food is RICH.
                                                3. The weather in June is insanely hot and HUMID.

This town was beautiful, intense, and haunted. There's so much grief and sadness here. While here, I stumbled upon Brandon Thibodeaux's photography. His images capture the Delta perfectly.

This was our last day in Mississippi. I hated to leave, but somehow felt relieved to have some distance from the intense emotions here. We stopped at this church to pay respects to Robert Johnson.  

There is something incredibly powerful about the Delta. It seems stuck in the past. Maybe that's what feels so smothering and glimpse of the future. At the same time, it's beautiful. I will go back.


-FJ said...

The Million Dollar Quartet... I saw the play a few years back.

Looks like a GREAT time. My daughter's leaving the New York law office and moving to Nashville in a few months to help open up an office there. I look forward to visiting!

Jen Brimmage said...

Oh I hope she enjoys Nashville. Quite a big change from NYC!

I want to hear all about it when you go to Memphis. It really is a great place to visit, but I think the trip to Greenwood made it even better.

The food...oh the food!

-FJ said...

There's a Memphis BBQ place in Laurel that I go to every once and a while called "Red Hot & Blue." They have got the best ribs and hush puppies in the state of Maryland, no doubt about it. I always leave satisfied!

-FJ said...


-FJ said...


Ducky's here said...

I missed Carl Perkins. Thought it was Scottie Moore.

Ducky's here said...

Here's a blues road trip

Part II

Jen Brimmage said...

Oh I like his sound!

Jen Brimmage said...

How are you doing Ducky? You feeling good lately?

Jen Brimmage said...

We have that chain here, too. They are good!

I can't express how much I enjoyed this trip. Maybe it's because we left the kids with my mom, I don't know. But it was without a doubt a spiritual experience.

Z said...

Fabulous pix....AS ALWAYS...even the top pic's large amount of pavers...such perfect placement on the are amazing. And I felt like I was THERE by seeing your pix. Man, for a plate of ribs right now.......! Miss you! Z

Jen Brimmage said...

Thank you Z!! I wasn't in a journalistic state of mind when I packed for the trip, so all I had was my smart phone and a point and shoot camera. Once I was there I totally regretted not packing a better camera! I miss you too!