I flew through Iowa, Missouri and Arkansas, to get to Tennessee. The one thing I remember from the drive is a black bear cub sighting! Next thing I knew I was in Memphis.
Roughly nine audiobooks have been my companions on the monotonous drives. One is an historical fiction which includes the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr, which happened at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, now also the National Civil Rights Museum. I stand staring up at the balcony he was shot on. A recording of one of his speeches comes through nearby speakers. His voice alone chokes me up. It occurs to me that his assassination helped the Civil Rights movement. I’m not condoning the violent act by any means, however, it consequently enraged and empowered black, and an increasing number of white Americans, to fight back harder. Likewise, the recent shootings in Charleston triggered the ban of the confederate flag. To the would be assassins out there, do you see that your violence helps move forward the very thing that you are so desperately trying to stunt? I guess you’re not rational enough to interpret it that way.
You are required by State law to visit Graceland while in Memphis. Just kidding. I did feel oddly compelled to go, even though I’m not a huge fan of Elvis. Actually enjoyed it though. The interior of his private jet, the shag carpet in his house, the collection of twenty or so cars, half of which I’d love to test drive, for even just a day.
I loved the movie Mothman so decided to pay a visit to the town of its origin, Point Pleasant, WV. The town has managed to capitalize quite well on the sightings of the ominous creature, who, according to some residents, caused the collapse of a bridge killing forty-six people in 1967. There’s also the version of the story where a lone Sandhill Crane who wandered out of its migration pack, was mistaken for Mothman.
The Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, in Weston, WV is a morbid photographers dream. Peeling paint. Rusty bed frames, abandoned wheelchairs. The tour guide had some great nauseating stories of murders and icepick lobotomies that happened in the rooms we stood in. It has made the shortlist for the craziest mental asylums in America.
I’m home now, and I can’t tell you how GOOD it feels.