Here are a few things I learned on our recent odyssey:
- My mom will dance on Beale Street (literally ON the street–she would not go into the clubs) and have her picture made with the large rooster outside The Red Rooster bar. This caused my reality to bend a little.
- The Mississippi River isn’t all that wide in Memphis. I’ve always imagined it as a mile-wide river the whole length of the thing, but it’s not. It’s a mile wide in places.Someplace in Minnesota it’s nearly 11 miles wide, but in spots, it’s only about 20 feet wide! I’m sure I must have learned this in school, but so much has fallen out of my brain over the years. I’ve flown over the Mississippi many times, but had never seen it from the ground. Crossing it in Memphis and again in St. Louis on the way back was very cool.
- Graceland isn’t as large as you might think. (My dad had to go there.)
- Oklahoma City is quite lovely. I’d picture all of Oklahoma like the black-and-white parts of Kansas from The Wizard of Oz. (We were in Oklahoma City the day of the flooding, and that was scary. We nearly had to swim out.
- We visited 18 states in three weeks. Every one of them was beautiful, and watching the landscape change gradually from mountain to plains to desert and back to mountains is fascinating. I thought I would sleep in the car, as we drove about 8 hours every day on the way to California and back. I never closed my eyes.
More later. I learned a lot on this trip. I’ll never forget it, both for all the beautiful country we saw, and for the gift of three uninterrupted weeks spent with Jim. This was the most consecutive time we’ve seen each other in the errr… some years we’ve been married. It was wonderful.
Also a very special gift was spending the time with my parents while they are still young and active and loving life. Here’s to you, Wayne and Claudette!