Day 7, November 5, 2016
Start: Memphis, Tennessee
Destination: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Total miles for the day: 475 miles
Total miles from day 1 start: 1902 miles
We basically spent the entire morning at Graceland, Elvis’s house. They basically kept his house as is, bought a ton of land across the street from his property, created themed displays with all his stuff and then themes souvenirs for each (i.e. Cars, planes, Elvis in Hawaii, Etc). So basically a theme park where you “ride” through a man’s life history. His house is the second most visited house in America after the White House.
I have to admit, Elvis has a pretty great story- starting from nothing in Tulepo, Mississippi to superstardom at the age of 19 in Memphis. I loved that creating music was purely an art to him and the minute it wasn’t (the shitty music in his movies that were just generating loads of revenue from his name and face), he was no longer interested. He would keep signing a song until he figured out the right sound. Every song was different. That’s how he developed rock n roll- just based on feel. He started with bluegrass and gospel. When he first came out, radio listeners thought he was black. He introduced a genre to young teenagers when the world never thought of them before (that seems absolutely bizarre now considering how much the young generation spends on discovering new and different types of music today). His music brought people together- black white young and old. It’s really incredible. Unfortunately he died really young at the age of 42.
Elvis’s Graceland home is kind of more modest than I expected, probably because he bought it pretty early in his career. I mean it was still pretty grand especially for that time period in Memphis. His planes and cars were pretty excessive though. One common theme was green carpet on the walls and floors in the house and the floor of the Lisa Marie plane. Everything was very 60s. The jungle room in the house had a waterfall. The media room had 3 TVs and a bar area. Elvis didn’t drink though. He also had a separate house for racquetball. Him and his parents are all buried here.
After 3 hours, $200, six gift shops and exhibits, we finally finished the platinum tour and airplanes package. (They really maximized their profitability here- creating a separate display for the planes, cars, Hawaii shows, etc. So amazing. Good job Priscilla Presley.)
Now it was time for some Southern Fried chicken!! We went to the original Gunn’s World Famous Fried Chicken and it was amazing!!! Best fried chicken EVER! So crispy on the outside and extra extra juicy on the inside. I even liked the white meat! The white and dark were equally juicy. I still like the dark meat flavor more though of course. I also had the best fried green tomatoes ever. I don’t know how they kept the outside sooo crispy and the tomato inside retained all its juices! Amazing!! Totally worth it. We drove past Beale street which reminded me a lot of Bourbon Street in NOLA and now we are off to OKC via Arkansas.
That about sums up my version of Memphis: Elvis and fried chicken.
Arkansas is very flat and it hosted a beautiful sunset. Many rest stops were closed and that’s about all I can say about it.
Oklahoma City is very vast. We stayed by the airport so we didn’t see much of the actual city. All I can say about Oklahoma is that it has cheap gas $1.79 and it is also very flat. We did drive past Meskogee along the way which was probably the highlight of my drive. (Because I’ve heard of Muskogee in one of Blake Shelton’s songs – probably one of the country songs Marc and I have spent hours listening to!)