Branson MO – Memphis TN

Drive Time: 5.5 Hours

Total Mileage: 3,901.1

AVG MPG: 21.2

Today: Graceland!

It’s very possible that I know the lyrics to every song in every Elvis Presley movie. I say that because my mother was a huge Elvis fan and we had every one of his records. Or, at least, every one of the movie records. And she played them a lot.  So I heard them a lot. A lot.

Not that I wasn’t a fan, I was. As a child, I imagined that I might be like Elvis one day; working as a pool boy at some exotic resort, picking up a guitar that happened to be leaning against a lounge chair, and singing a song so compelling that The Jordanaires would have to appear from behind umbrella stands to sing backup.

Alas, not to be. I was never destined to be The King Deux. Still, Elvis was a major part of my childhood.

Graceland wasn’t originally a destination we’d planned to visit.  Then it was. Then it wasn’t. Then it was a maybe, then it happened (That’s pretty much how this trip has been so far). I had been to Elvis’s home way back in 1980, when I was moving from Florida to California. It hadn’t been open to the public very long; Elvis had just passed away in 1977.  The estate was beautiful, but the actual home wasn’t open. There wasn’t much there in the way of a museum then.

That has all changed. A huge complex and visitors center has opened across the street where tours of the grounds can be purchased. A large museum of Elvis memorabilia is a part of that complex. This includes his large automobile collection as well as a concert hall and some eateries. Across the street, at the actual mansion, the house and property has been turned into a fairly extensive chronicle of Elvis’s life. And, of course, his final resting place.

As someone who kept up with his life (if for no other reason than to be able to understand my mother’s obsession) I recognized that while the exhibits were extensive, some things were missing from the presentation of his story. This was a celebration of his life after all. Parts of the exhibit were cliché (measuring your social distance in terms of Teddy Bears), but overall a fun experience and worth the sidetrack to see it.

Long live The King.

2 thoughts on “Long Live the King!

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