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Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Weekend Trip to Tennessee

For a short spring vacation I thought we could take a quick trip to a few spots of interest.  These postcards were found among some family papers last winter.  First off, the above photo depicts the new terminal building at the Memphis International Airport.  This beautiful structure was built by Mann and Harrover and was completed on June 7, 1963, for $6.5 million.  Imagine if they could build it for that today.  This postcard refers to the airport as it is currently named; the name was changed from Memphis Municipal to Memphis International in 1969.  According to the postcard, the terminal is designed to provide maximum comfort, convenience and safety for its air travelers.  I believe them, don't you?

Since we landed at the airport at night, we are forced to spend the night before our sightseeing.  Unfortunately there is an Elvis convention in town, so we are forced to travel over one hundred miles northeast to Jackson, Tennessee, which is about an hour and half away.  The good news is, we are able to find a room at this snazzy, relaxing oasis on I-40.  That's right, a holiday Inn, complete with its iconic, eye-catching googie-style sign.  How many nights have you been on the road, tired, in need of a good night's rest, and you suddenly saw that flashing green and yellow sign with the shining white star and felt the warmth and relief in knowing you'd found your home for the night?  Too many to count, right?  And hey, if we delay our departure a little, the kids can take a dip in the pool.  However, with the weather on the chilly side, they might decide to skip this activity, at least for now.  Perhaps we'll just be satisfied to grab this colorful postcard to send to Grandma.

Okay, so we skipped the pool.  Now we've got to jump in the rental car and head back to Memphis.  I know, we just made this trip, but it won't take long.  And once we get there, we'll get the chance to see the Pink Palace in Chickasaw Gardens.  No, don't get too excited.  Chickasaw Gardens is not anything like Busch Gardens in Tampa, or Cyprus Gardens in Winter Haven, Florida.  Chickasaw Gardens use to be the estate of the inventor of the self-serve grocery store, Piggly Wiggly: Clarence Saunders.  Saunders lost the estate, along with his fortune, in 1923, and developers transformed this land into an upscale neighborhood of Memphis.  The good news is, the Pink Palace is now a museum, and we not only get to view the grounds and the gardens, but we can also walk through a replica of the first Piggly Wiggly.  How cool is that?  The tickets are reasonably priced but they only stay open till 5 pm.  But that's okay, since we have to get the rental car back and catch our flight.

Besides, from what I hear, Memphis is crawling with Elvis impersonators during this convention.  

I think the next trip we take will be through Texas and Oklahoma, doesn't that sound nice?