Monday, May 14, 2012

May 14, 2012. Rest day at Memphis, TN.

While this was supposed to be a rest day, I did not rest much! Dianne and I walked out to breakfast in the morning, to a small local diner. It was great, and a fraction of the cost of the hotel breakfast. On the way there we passed the Occupy Memphis group camped out in the park. After breakfast Dianne and about 10 others from our group took a taxi out to see Graceland; I stayed back and did our laundry.

After laundry duties I walked out of the hotel and got on a trolley. I bought a one-day pass for $3.50. First I looped the whole route, then started getting off and on when something seemed interesting. Below is the Memphis Pyramid, which used to be used as a convention center and is in the process of becoming a big showplace for Bass Pro Shops.

I stopped at the Visitors' Center and saw bronze statues of BB King and Elvis Presley. I picked up a map and some brochures and got back on the trolley.

I walked through Jefferson Davis Park and past the Memphis Queen Riverboat.

After that I went to the local bike shop and then met Dianne and went to lunch at the Arcade, Memphis's oldest cafe and the place Elvis Presley used to get his fried peanut butter and banana sandwiches; they are still on the menu. While there we saw Cheryl, Ina, Abby and Lea from the bike tour.

Right after lunch Dianne and I walked to the National Civil Rights Museum.  We were there for hours, and it was a sobering experience--I hate to think of our country behaving that way--the discrimination, the violence... it was hard to take.

The museum includes the Lorraine Hotel where Dr. Martin Luther King was shot, and the building across the street, from which he was shot.

We then walked to Beale Street and saw the sights, leaving there in time to see the ducks at the Peabody Hotel.

The Peabody Hotel was built in the early 20th century and the ducks in the indoor fountain have been a tradition since the 1930s. It started as a joke, and has continued for many decades. The ducks swim around the fountain all day and at 5:00 PM their handler taps his cane three times on the side of the fountain and they line up and waddle to the elevator to return to their rooftop abode. The process is reversed at 11:00 AM when they return to the indoor fountain.

We shared a lobby table with Jan and Mac from Richmond, VA. We all had a great time, and they bought us a drink.  We told one another our stories.... they are leaving tomorrow on the Memphis Queen Riverboat for a tour down the river. We stayed long after the ducks went up the elevator enoying each others' company.

We left the hotel and walked around until we found a place to eat. We saw the black Cinderella carriage on the street but did not go for a ride.

Instead of having a fancy dinner at one of the hotels we ate at the Flying Fish, a small place on a side street. We had wine, fish, rice and beans, and grilled vegetables.  After dinner we laughed at ourselves for not resting on our rest day, got back on the trolley to the hotel. It was a great day!

1 comment:

Pam Perkins said...

Sounds like you had a great time. Thanks for the update and the photos. Pam