Monday, December 18, 2006

Court Square,
Downtown Memphis,
April 1988
from Lori's Pic Collection

I went home over the Thanksgiving Holiday (2006). The following were some of my more memorable moments.

THE WORST: For some reason, the folks at Memphis International decided to keep our luggage. Oh, they claimed it had been held over in Charlotte for inspection. Yeah, right. I could almost swear I saw our luggage in the jet-way as we got off the plane. I'd purposely marked our luggage to make it more easily distinguishable from all of the other black bags. Anyway, it just so happened that the one piece that turned up missing had our son's prescription cough medicine in it--not to mention all of his clothes. This isn't the first time we've had our luggage lost ("jacked") at Memphis International. After returning our lost ("jacked") luggage on that particular occasion, a radio the hubby had been given as a Christmas gift turned up missing. Well, this time around, after the hubby had thoroughly cussed out everybody, we got our bags back all right . . . well after 8:00 that evening . . . which might not have been so bad had we not arrived at around 10:00 that morning.

THE FUNNIEST: After leaving the airport, we went to pick up a rental car. We thought we were all set to go to grandma's house when a Good Samaritan pointed out that the car we were about to drive off in had a FLAT. Sure enough, the rear wheel on the passenger's side was flat as all get out. After watching his irate Dad march back up to the car rental office, the young'n turned and looked at me. After heaving a sigh and shaking his head, he said, "You know . . . this is starting to feel like an episode of "GOOD TIMES." This kid is not even a teen and already he's got jokes. I guess we taught him well. LOL.

MOST SAVORY: Okay, when you think Thanksgiving and food, you generally think turkey, dressing, sweet potato pie and all of that. But whenever I go home to Memphis, I'm always thinking barbecue. Yeah, the Thanksgiving grub was cool. But the barbecued chicken, cole slaw, beasn and the buttered roll I had from CORKY'S was THE BOMB! If I thought I could have gotten away with it, I would have wrapped some up and taken it back on the plane with me . . .

MOMENT THAT MADE ME GO "HUH! WHAT THE . . . " While driving down Poplar Avenue, coming back from downtown and right next to OVERTON PARK, I saw a white guy . . . driving a station wagon . . . with SPINNERS. Hey, could be it was Craig Brewer of "Hustle and Flow" fame. Certainly sounds like some ig'nant a$$ mess he'd pull (LOL).

FAMILY-WISE: My Dad, a retired military man, shared several tales from his days in the service with us. The first had to do with his brief stint in a military singing group called the PIPERS. I'll have to see if I can make copies of those pictures and share them one day soon. His other stories dealt with the 3 seperate occasions he had a GUN pulled on him--one in GERMANY, once in the PHILIPPINES and once in VIET NAM. For the record, my dad served in the AIR FORCE and AF folks aren't typically put in position where they have to handle guns, much less get shot at. Also, interesting was how on two of those ocassions (in the Philippines and 'Nam) my Dad claimed that a "guardian angel" in the form of a priest materialized, seemingly from out of nowhere and diffused the situations. Hmm. I may have to share those stories one day as well. What surprised me though was when my father brought up the psychological affects of war. He talking about being burrowed down in a foxhole and/or behind a bunker somewhere . . . and listening to the dropping of bombs . . . bombs that are falling closer and closer ("walking" is what I think he called it) and having to come to terms with the fact that one of those bombs just might have your name on it . . .

MUSIC-WISE: The hubby and I were listening to the car radio while driving back to my parent's home late one night. We were cruising through North Memphis and had just crossed over that stretch where JACKSON AVENUE turns into AUSTIN PEAY when we lucked up on, of all things, a PRINCE-MINI-CONCERT! Oh dag! We turned that mess up and for several long minutes on end we were YOUNG, SLIM, UNJADED and FULL OF DREAMS again . . .

MOST ENTERTAINING: Me, two of my sister-in-laws and a couple of friends went to a play at THEATRE WORKS. For a mere $15.00 I got my money's worth and then some. The play, entitled, THE 24/7 CAFE was written by RUBY O'GRAY and sponsored by the BLUFF CITY TRI-ART THEATRE COMPANY. Talk about "Tyler Perry" funny! We had a ball laughing at the cafe's wacky customers and crew, especially THOMAS (played by JS TATE), RITA (played by DANIELLE CARRINGTON) and MRS. BEA (played by THEREN WOMACK). Collectively, they did an excellent job of serving up a slice of Black Memphis life from the 1960's.

BEST ALL-AROUND: The Saturday after Thanksgiving, the hubby and I took a drive downtown to the MEMPHIS RIVERFRONT and stopped for a stroll through TOM LEE PARK. The weather was perfect and it didn't cost us anything. A lot of other folks apparently had the same idea because families, couples (young & old), kids on bikes, tourists and the like were everywhere. A handful of dare-devils were out on the water, racing each other and zooming around on those little jet-ski boats. The hubby and i had a great time marveling at the big houses on the bluffs, the dark choppy waters of the Mississippi River and just how far our beloved city has come. Afterward, we drove through downtown, past MUD ISLAND, the PYRAMID, the PEABODY HOTEL and the crowds on BEALE STREET. We chuckled at the sight of the condos going up in the spot on SECOND STREET where we use to change buses on our daily treks to and from LEMOYNE-OWEN COLLEGE. And for the umpteenth time, we swore we'd stop one day and actually take one of the horse and carriage tour rides thorugh the Bluff City's downtown district.

Downtown Memphis, TN


from Lori's Pic Collection

As the picture above indicates, this is something we've been promising ourselves since the late 80's. But hey . . . really. . . one day . . . we will.


FeLicia said...

Don't feel bad, I lived there for 18 years and NEVER went on one of those carriage rides. I felt bad until I read your post. What is it about not being a tourist in your own hometown? (Or adopted in my case).


Lori said...

Hey, now that's a great idea for a post: things in your city/town you've been meaning to do and/or places in your city/town you've been intending to visit. Thanks for stopping by. (I'll holla at you in the New Year 'bout that interview).