Monday, October 21, 2013

We Woke Up With The King And By That Night Everything Was OK

Memphis, TN to Oklahoma City, OK

Day 2 of our Journey: Sunday, Oct. 6th.

Ryan created this awesome map just for our blog! How sweet is he?! Each dot/letter represents a stop we made or an adventure we had. To recap: A- Abingdon, VA where are trip begins. B- Nashville, TN where we did a quick run through of the city night life. To read about those in my previous post click here.

Stop #3: Graceland
(Listed as C on the map)

We woke up in Memphis, TN. around 10:00 am and where did we go? GRACELAND! DUH!! (We woke up with the King...get it?!) We were running a little behind schedule and the tickets to tour Elvis Presley's home were pretty expensive. Instead we walked around the Lisa Marie and signed the wall in front of Graceland. It was too cool! Many years ago, when my Momma visited, she signed the same wall. I couldn't find where she signed, but it was neat to relive her steps.

(O.M.G. Our names are on the wall that is in front of E.L.V.I.S. P.R.E.S.L.E.Y.'S house!!!)

Stop #4: Central BBQ, Memphis TN
We said, "Thank you, thank you very much," to the King around noon. My only request during our trip was to compare Tennessee BBQ to Texas BBQ. Before we left the hotel, Ryan found a place that was voted Best BBQ in Memphis! When we reach the truck, I'm handed the keys and prepare to drive the behemoth for the first time. EEK! Of course, our route was through pure ghetto Memphis with the skinniest road ever paved. Needless to say, it was ROUGH. Just as I was starting to suggest to Ryan we should turn around, we entered a beautiful section of downtown. The streets were lined with restaurants, old trees, and boutiques. We turned a corner and voila! There was our destination: Central BBQ. Let me just tell you, this was one of my top 5 meals. It was beyond delicious. I even finished before Ryan and that NEVER happens! Not only was the pulled pork finger lickin' good, the atmosphere was fantastic! We sat outside on that gorgeous Saturday and listened to the live music. Just fantabulous! 

After prying ourselves away from the deliciousness-we got back in the truck, found 40, and headed West. Within minutes we crossed into our next state:

State #2: Arkansas

We were in Arkansas for a maximum of 20 minutes when traffic STOPPED. I'm talked no movement. No indication of what was going on. Nothing. Ryan and I tried to make the most out of the situation- we jumped out of the truck to take this...

(See my side note at the very bottom of this post for an explanation of who Ryan is taking his picture with.) Anywho, the above picture was to show the 3rd graders what Arkansas looked like. It was too funny taking this picture. Eventually, we started moving. Not a moment too soon either- we needed to hustle to our next stop before it closed. 
*We never found out why traffic was stopped...strange*

Stop #5: Little Rock, AK
(Listed as D on the map)

We reach Little Rock, AK and arrive at the zoo around 4:20pm
The zoo closes at 5:00pm
The zoo stops allowing visitors to enter at....4:00pm
20 flippin' minutes late
CRAPOLA! We were so bummed! 

Thankfully, Ryan and I can make the best out of any situation. We went for a quick walk towards the Arkansas River in downtown Little Rock. Just as we were walking by, Wicked had just ended and the streets were flooded with people. It was crazy. 

We learned a fun fact about Little Rock while we were there, some of you may not know- Little Rock, AK is the birth place of Bill Clinton. Pretty interesting if I do say so myself! Thanks Emily for your all knowing wisdom.

Once the mob cleared, Ryan had a hankering for a smoothie and it just so happened we passed a Tropical Smoothie on our walk to the river. Our mouths are watering as we imagine the different smoothies....and they are closed. Poo! So we try to hit up Rally's, settling for a milkshake. Nope, their machine is broken. Crap! Determined to have some freakin' ice cream, we find a Wendy's and thankfully get our hands on two Frosty's. Thank the lord! With our delicious ice cream, we go for a walk in the park that surrounds the zoo- we were going to enjoy it one way or another. As we walk along the path that is next to the zoo we peered through the green privacy fence and holy cow what did we see?!?! A CHEETAH!! It was too cool! We continued walking and as we were walking we heard this strange screeching noise. I had no clue what it was, but as we got closer to a particular tree we notice the sound getting louder. Ryan stopped and pointed to a branch were a squirrel was hunched over with a death grip on an acorn. My mouth was open in pure disbelief. I had no idea squirrels made that awful sound. (Seriously check it out: Screechy Squirrel)  
Finally, around 6:30 pm., I was back in the drivers seat- on 40W- and destined for......

State #5 Oklahoma

(This is actually a picture of the Oklahoma state sign...just use your imagination)

We crossed into Oklahoma at 10:10 pm.  It wasn't too exciting of a drive until we reached the city limits of OK City. The sky lit up with neon signs and billboards (which are a night driver's dream!). Thankfully, there was a hotel with a parking lot large enough for our tanker and had a room available (And by that night everything OK....tee hee!!). We checked into the La Quinta around 1:00 am and called it a night! 


License Plates
During our trip we tried to keep track of all the license plates we saw. We thought it would be easiest to have a list for each state we drove through. Here are the stats for Tennessee & Arkansas

Side note: Have I introduced you to Flat Stanley? No!? Well, how rude of me. Flat Stanley is a project my bestest Heather, a teacher in WV, did with her 3 grade class a few years ago. For those of you who have yet to have the privilege to host a Flat Stanley- let me just say it's a BLAST! As a class, they read the story of Flat Stanley and then each student colors their own Flat cutout. Then, they find a friend or relative to send their Flat Man to for a few weeks. During his vacation, the friend or relative shows him around their hometown taking pictures and picking up brochures. At the end of the Flat's visit, he is sent back to the student with all of the pictures and such where his vacation is shared with the entire class. It's really neat! I participated in this a few years ago and forgot to send Heather's Flat back at the end of the vacation. Whoops! But it worked out because we agreed that I would take him across the country with me and send back pictures to her class of where ever we went. The students were able to plot each of his stops and predict where he'd end up next. So flippin' cool!

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