Road trip Day 1 & 2
I've got video of some of this ... so i might put together a little montage later...
8:00 am: Text from my dad: "If u expect 2 head south, u should leave by 10 am today! Impossible tomorrow!"
I am a stubborn girl. But I usually know when to succomb. I threw some clothes in a suitcase, grabbed my accordion, saw, and guitar, along with my iPhone (whoo hoo!) and hit the road.
The worst part of the drive was the first 30 miles leaving Louisville, lots of Louisvillians trying to drive in the snow and slush on I-65. It took about 4 hours to get to Nashville, but I made it fine. The most dangerous part was replying to my mother's text messages that, yes, I was alright.
12:30 pm, Nashville
Lunch at the Noshville with Karen. You know you're a regular when the server at the counter knows your name and that you drink decaf. I got a great New York pickle and a Black and White cookie. You New Yorkers know about the Black and White cookie. It's like cake AND a cookie. Fantastic. I decided to truck on to Memphis to visit my friends Garrett and Virginia, and I brought them pickles and a B&W cookie to go.
1:56 pm, I-40 Westbound just out of Nashville.
Stopped in traffic. Not to fear: I've got an iPhone. So i check my email and the weather and the New York Times. Then I get a little bored, and I realize that Garrett's Black and White cookie will, sadly, not make it to Memphis. (Yum.)
5:30 pm: Memphis.
The city is totally shut down with 4 inches of snow. But all's well. Garrett and Virgina cooked me eggplant parmesan and we talked about the good ol' NYU days (Garrett went to college with me). I am impressed because they are all grown-up, with matching dishes and glasses and placemats and a HUGE TV and a fancy condo with a rainfall showerhead and matching stainless steel appliances ... and BOTH of them have jobs. Real jobs, not like "drummer" -- they are attorneys. But nice, do-good attorneys.
9:00 Virginia made heart-shaped waffles! But there wasn't enough Lactaid milk, so Garrett had to eat bread with peanut butter and syrup. That was kind of weird.
11:00 Graceland! Wow, did Elvis have some great decorators. My favorite was "The Jungle Room," which featured green shag carpet on the floor AND the ceiling. And I recommend paying the extra five bucks to see the airplane and the Jumpsuit room, featuring 56 additional jumpsuits, all hand embroidered. Amazing. Photos to follow, if you haven't yet been there.
Another great moment was standing in the meditation garden, where Elvis is buried. I wanted to take a picture by his grave, but I had to wait for a woman to get off of her cel phone. Yes, she was just yakking away, on her phone, in front of Elvis's grave. Not even anything cool like, "Guess where I'm calling from?!?!" No, she was just on the phone.
The Presley Estate also seems to have a problem with apostrophes. I saw loads of misplaced apostrophes throughout the museum, which annoyed me.
2:00 Tofu barbecue sandwich for lunch!
3:00 Driving tour of Memphis.
4:00 I-40 West.
5:00 Arrive in Little Rock, only to find that the Clinton Presidential Library closes at 5:00. Bugger!
I thought i would pull off for a nice sit-down meal. But Texarcana sucks. I tried settling for The Olive Garden, where at least I could get a decent vegetarian meal or a great salad. But the wait was an hour. The other options were Chili's and Outback Steakhouse. I got onion rings from Burger King and left town.
Tomorrow I'm getting up crazy early and hitting the road. Austin by lunch! I can't wait.
Ooooh! -- during my drive, I kept a little log of what I listened to. Thought you might enjoy this.
Louisville to Nashville:
AM Radio - HORRIBLE, but they have weather reports
Podcasts of "This American Life"
Podcast of "60 Minutes"
David Mead: Indiana (the whole record)
Nashville to Memphis:
Podcast of "60 Minutes," the global warming special
"This American Life"
My new record, twice.
John Mann's demos of his new record
Bob Dylan: Street Legal (album)
Bob Dylan: Blood on the Tracks tracks 1-6
Memphis to Texarcana: (here's where i started keeping good records)
Dan Bern: New American Language (album)
Dan Bern: The Swastika EP (album)
John Cougar Mellencamp: Scarecrow (album)
Then I hit shuffle on the ol' iPod, and here's what came up. My taste is a bit ecclectic.
Dan Bern: "Tongue Tied"
Todd Snider: "I Spoke as a child"
Mark Knopfler: "Secondary Waltz"
Weezer: "Surf Wax America"
Johnny Berry & the Outliers: "Mean-Eyed Cat"
U2: "New Year's Day"
Tammy Wynette: "Stand By Your Man"
Pavement: "Spit on a Stranger"
Wanda Jackson: "i Gotta Know"
Patty Griffin: "No Bad news"
Lily Allen: "Nan You're a Windowshopper"
Patsy Cline: "When I get Through with You"
Gillian Welch: "One Morning"
The Beatles: "Something"
David Gray: "Night Blindness"
Elvis Costello: "Sleepless Nights"
Beastie Boys: "Sure Shot"
The Kendalls: "heaven's just a sin away"
Gipsy Kings: "Bamboleo"
Peter Searcy: "Don't Let a day Go By"
Velvet Underground: "Pale Blue Eyes"
A Fine Frenzy: "Ashes and Wine"
Simon and Garfunkel: "Baby Driver"
John Prine: "Big Fat Love"
Steve Earle: "Democracy"
Patty Griffin: "Up to the Mountain"
David Mead: "New Mexico"
Dixie Chicks: "Sin Wagon"
The Muckrakers: "Gravity"
Elvis Costello: "Taking My Life in YOur hands"
Todd Snider: "alright guy"
Sarah Vaughn: "The Nearness of you"
Lucinda Williams: "Are you alright?"
Townes Van Zandt: "talkin thunderbird blues"
Patsy Cline: "When You Need a Laugh"