Tuesday, April 27, 2010

We All Will Be Received...

Back home from Memphis and a 5-hour Elvis/Graceland experience. It was my fabulous wife's birthday and she wanted to see Graceland. We rented a nice Dodge Nitro from Budget and drove the 3.5 hours to Memphis, checked into the Grand Dame of Memphis Hotels, The Peabody, caught the ducks and planned on hitting the Rendezvous for some famous ribs for dinner.

For whatever reason the Rendezvous was closed, so we walked back across the street and into Texas de Brazil, a Brazilian-style steakhouse. For the uninitiated, that means you pay $43 and get an all-you-can-eat salad bar and your choice of large skewers of meat brought to your table by swarthy men with knives. As long as your supplied hunger button is green side up, they keep stopping by and slicing off chunks of chicken, garlic-encrusted sirloin, bacon-wrapped fillet, rack of lamb, etc. Once you are stuffed, you turn the button red-side up and they leave you alone. Awesome.

Woke up, checked out of the Peabody, saw the ducks and had breakfast at Denny's 'cause breakfast at Denny's is usually pretty good. Not too hungry from the previous night's gorging, but we knew that we'd be spending some time at the Graceland exhibits, so we got the day started out right.

Graceland was a 10-minute drive and after paying $10.00 to park, we walked into the ticket pavilion where, much to our delight, two platinum tickets were waiting, courtesy of a Facebook musician friend who heard about our trip. Excellent. Now we could see the mansion, '68 special exhibit, airplanes, Elvis in Hollywood, Elvis Fashion, and his car collection. Graceland is celebrating what would have been Elvis' 75th birthday this year.

Mansion first, of course. It's smaller than I thought, even though I'd heard it was going to be smaller than I'd think. It was, though. Decorated in mid-'70's hipbilly chic, it's a study in avocado (the kitchen), orange, blue and gold. Tapestries and draperies and shag carpet and push-button TVs. All of it cool, all of it Elvis.

There are horses on the grounds and a Trophy Room and a racquetball court that is now a display room. Golf carts, Cadillacs, motorcycles, tractors, airplanes. Jumpsuits. Lots of jumpsuits. Guitars, movie scripts, posters, many gift shops.

In all, a fantastic experience. Here are some photos:

Living Room

T.V. Room

Jungle Room


Dining Room

Gold Records

'70's Jumpsuits

'68 Comeback Special Leather Suit

Rare Gibson 6-string Bass, 6-string guitar doubleneck


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