Quoted From A Fellow Traveler:

Life is short, Break the rules, Forgive quickly, Kiss slowly, Love truly, Laugh uncontrollably, And never regret anything that made you smile. Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we're here we should dance.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Where are we now?

We arrived in Red Bay Alabama Friday afternoon. We are here to take the factory tour at the Tiffin Motorhome facility Monday morning, Joyce and I really love the 36 foot Phaeton.
So in the meantime we are going to tour the area, and will take a ride to Tupelo to see where Elvis was born.
This is the Tiffin Company campground where we are staying at $10 a day with full hook-ups. We are the only ones that aren't in a Tiffin motorhome. Everything else in here are large diesel coaches that cost in the range of $250,000.00 - $500,000.00, boy do we feel out of place!

They are here for factory service and most are full-timers which means that they live in their motorhomes. There are 92 slots and the place is full except for a few spots.

We aren't far from the Natchez Trace Parkway, which is a scenic drive so we will take it to get to Tupelo today (Saturday). Along the parkway are some historic sites such as the one below.

Then we made it to Tupelo, Mississippi where Elvis was born. Below is a portrate of him and his parents. Did you know that Elvis' father spent time in the penitentiary?
Elvis Aaron Presley was born in January 1935 and his father, Vernon Presley, was jailed for forgery in 1938, so he was three.Vernon Presley was jailed for three years although he only served eight months. He had, along with his brother in law (the brother of Elvis's mother) and another man called Travis Smith, altered the amount on a check from $3 to $8. The check had been made out by Orville Bean, who was Vernon's boss at the time.While this amount may seem incredibly small now, three dollars was worth a lot of money in 1938. But it was quite a tough sentence, since he was sent to the Mississippi State Penitentiary. While Vernon was in prison, Gladys (Elvis's mother) could not cope financially and she and Elvis were made homeless when she lost their house. They had to move in with Vernon's relatives, in order to survive. Throughout Elvis's childhood they lived in poverty which is thought to have had quite an impact on him in later life.

This is where Elvis was born, along with his identical twin brother Jesse Garon, who was still born.
A bronze statue of the "King" when he was 13 years old. Note that he was taller than Joyce but they only guess at his height when the statue was casted.

Below are some interesting comments from friends and relatives of Elvis. Clicking on each picture will increase the size so you can read it easily.










Thursday, May 29, 2008

Went To Memphis for the Day

Our day in Memphis started with a stroll to the Peabody Hotel in the center of the city. We had to be in the main lobby of the Peabody for 11:00 am so we could watch the Ducks come out of the elevator and walk to the fountain in the center of the lobby.
Yes, you read this correctly, there are ducks (4 female, 1 lucky male) that come down the elevator from the penthouse every day at 11:00 am, walk on a red carpet to the fountain in the main lobby, and jump in. They spend the day swimming in the fountain and having their dinner, then at 5:00 pm they jump out and return to the elevator for a ride back to their room.
The legend of the Peabody Ducks
Joyce with the Ducks in the Lobby of the Peabody Hotel
Another shot of the fountain.
Can you see the Ducks?
And for you Baseball Fans!
Beale Street, where the Blues started.
Beale street looking north.
Old Theater on Beale street.
Info. along the street.

Painting on the side of a building on Beale street, awesome!
Giving rides on Beale street.
This one is for my Son-in-law
Do you know what happened here?
Hint!
Dr. Kings Room
Nothing has changed since the shooting.

Went over to Mud Island where there was a scale model of the Mississippi River from start to finish. This covers a half mile walk and is all casted in concrete sections. Click on the Mississippi River link above for further info. A short explanation of the Mississippi Riverwalk.
R/B Riverbarge was docked at Mud Island, these are two barges hooked together creating a floating hotel.
Just Joyce with some handsome guy by the Muddy Mississippi, surprisingly there were no boats or ships traveling the river while we were there.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

A day at Graceland

This is where we are camped, storm is coming in for the night. Tomorrow we go to Graceland.


The drive to Graceland only took about 20 minutes but I must say that the drivers in Memphis are the worse I've seen yet, even worse that at home. Graceland is in what I would call a depressed area but from seeing some of the old pictures of the area back in the 60's, it was pretty baron at that time. Now he even has the street named after him.
Here's Joyce at the front door to Graceland. Prior to coming to the house, we had to purchase our tickets across the street and go through a humorous security check where Joyce had to let the guard check her purse. Videos were not allowed so we had to check the video camera in a locker. I questioned the guard as to why the security is so tight and he claimed that there are so many crazy people that they didn't want anyone to get shot at Graceland and suing them. This guy was serious but I treated it as a joke, I think he was one of those crazies.
Elvis' bedroom was upstairs but the area is off limits to the public out of respect.
This is his parents bedroom which is located downstairs.
The living room is off to the right as you come in the front door, Elvis designed to his taste.
A very small portion of the gold and platinum records and albums.
Elvis had a horse just like this one that was his favorite, Joyce had to pat him.
The Pool Room
Dining room

This room was a racket ball court that was converted to another awards room.
Another shot of the same room.
His mother's favorite car although she never drove.
Part of his motorcycle collection.
Elvis is buried on Graceland with his parents and grandmother, who also lived on the estate. There is a plake at Graceland for his twin brother but his brother is buried in Tupelo.
His grave

This is a real hotel, note the name.

His favorite plane the Lisa Marie was sold to someone in Florida. After negotiations, the plane was flown to Memphis airport and towed to it's final resting place across the street from Graceland.

Kitchen

video

Jungle Room

video

I have to admit that even though I was never really an Elvis fan, I was blown away by what this man accomplished in his short life. He was well liked in the Memphis area although that could be because he donated money to various foundations such as the YMCA, the area hospital, and most anyone that was down and out. He was know to pay off mortgages of individuals that were out of work and on the verge of loosing their homes. His daughter recalls Elvis donating to someone as being a daily routine.

If you are ever in the Memphis area, I sugsest that you visit Graceland.