Sunday, May 8, 2016

May 8: Memphis TN > Dallas, TX

After a great nights sleep, and a crummy "continental breakfast" (seriously, I've been to The Continent, and this is NOT what they have for breakfast anywhere in Europe...) I headed into Memphis proper to have a look-see.

I always love wandering around southern towns and cities on Sunday, because most people are in church the landscape is devoid of people, and traffic. Memphis was no different.

I had never been to Memphis before, so it was a treat.

I was sad that I did not get to see any of the trams/trolleys running on these tracks, but I guess there is little call for them on Sunday mornings.

I made my way down to the mighty Mississippi River, which honestly wasn't all that much to see.

I was close to Beale Street, so I drove down that once. It was a bit like what I imagine Mardi Gras is on a morning after a big party. I can't say I was all that impressed. 

Memphis had some pretty nice old buildings that were sadly empty and decaying. 

I then headed a bit to the northern side of Memphis to a long park (Mississippi River Greenbelt Park) that paralleled the Mississippi for a few glam shots. Now this was a bit more impressive. 


That's right...

I would probably never have a reason to find myself in Memphis again so I figured what the hell, let's go to Graceland

I'm not an Elvis fan by any measure, but it was well worth the price of admission.

As a museum professional, I will say that I was very impressed with the care and attention to detail the staff demonstrated in keeping the house original, yet providing access to the public. 

I did spend a little extra to see the King's automobile collection.

I did not want to shell out the extra money to go inside his plane, but I did like the "Takin' Care of Business" logo on the fin.

By this point I had spent far longer than I had anticipated at Graceland, and I needed to make up time. I headed westward back into Arkansas. The original plan was to head to Austin, TX but that was unfeasible. New plan: Abilene TX and a KOA.

Once I hit Little Rock. I had planned on stopping at the Clinton Presidential Library, but again time wouldn't allow for it. 

Sonic for lunch:

Approaching the Texas border, I hit stand still traffic. From 4:00 to 4:35, I didn't move more than a mile. Frustrating to say the least.

Once I hit Texarkana, I just had to play "Eastbound and Down", in honor of Jerry Reed.

4:49 PM, Texas!

I was happy to be in Texas, because the speed limits were 75, which meant in reality anywhere from 80 to 85. 

First Texas cows!

Finally, the Big D, and crummy (but warm) weather. 

Time again was my enemy, so I decided Dallas, or the suburbs, would be my end point for the day. As it turns out, all of the KOA's in this part of Texas were full up, so I had to resort to a hotel again. I ended up staying at a beautiful Beaux Arts hotel in downtown Dallas, the Hotel Indigo.

The rooms were a bit frayed, but still clean and unique. I took a long shower, and then headed out onto the rainy streets to find some dinner.

After wandering around for a bit trying to decide what to eat, I ended up at a place called Ameicano. Just as I sat down the skies opened up and it poured heavily. I ordered my meal (steak) and a drink (proseco) and realized I left my wallet in the room. Luckily I had cash on me. The waitress was (of course) from Newport RI, so we had a nice chat about places we both liked to frequent.

I quite liked Dallas. The city itself was empty, but it was warm and inviting with a plethora of interesting buildings to look at. Today wasn't as long a day as yesterday, but I was still tired.