Left around 07:00 from Smyrna NIC, the receptionist, of Mercedes-Benz dealt with my truck at 8:00. I recovered it at 15:00 to go to Memphis where I arrived at 19:25 with an outside temperature of 34°C. Beforehand I had carried out a road test with Darrick, technician M-B. All seemed Ok. I crossed my fingers. As on Friday of the previous week Darrick, had been in touch with Achim of ORC who gave him the procedure to be followed which is not authorized any more in Europe.
To avoid the rush hour on the hwy's I left as of 7:00 the Lowe's carpark at the same time two police cars surrounded my truck. After having shown my papers and having answered the usual questions, they wished me the welcome. I stationed my truck on the free carpark close to the Visitor Center where I made my collection of booklets. Then I was going to walk on Baele St which is with the Blues of Memphis what Broadway Ave is in Country-Music of Nashville. At the entrance of the street the statue of Elvis Presley throne in majesty on eponymous Plaza. But due the temperature tourists were absent. At the time of lunching I returned to Visitor Center to know the address of Paulette's Restaurant recommended by my American friends Olivia & Fred. Meals were succulent but with fresh water because of the outside temperature. I spent the afternoon, in cool, by visiting the Mississippi River Museum on Mud Island. It exhibits the life of the river and its inhabitants with their culture. In the gallery devoted to the music I discovered panels dedicated to Chopin (!) who never put his feet in the region. Around 16:00 I moved towards the National Civil Rights Museum, closed on Tuesdays. Then I decided to establish my bivouac in the T.O. Fuller State Park to be in shade under the trees.
On Wednesday, July 29 I decided to remain one day more in Fuller State Park to visit what I regard two icons of the American dream and as the quintessence of the paradox of American Way of Life. I want to speak about Elvis Presley and Martin Luther King. Their only common point is to be disappeared from violent death in Memphis. The first by an overdose of drugs in his house bought at 22 years, the second under the ball of an assassin whereas he left by the balcony his room #36 at Lorraine Motel.
The visit of Graceland is a big business of million visitors at the amazing price from $40.50 to $77.00 with in more $10 for the carpark. Admittedly the visit is remarkably organized each one is equipped with a iPad for the comments. The interior of the house is excessively kitsch. The dependences are a museum at the glory of the idol with his own Hall of Fame, his costumes etc. the highlight of extravagance is his collection of luxury cars and especially two four-jet planes! Due to the crowd it took me three good hours to make the tour of it. To click on the photo below to visualize the photo gallery.
Then I went to the downtown and more exactly to Lorraine Motel adjacent to the National Civil Rights Museum. As of the entry the tone is set: “It is the history of people…”. I spent three good hours there too, but it was insufficient to read all the panels and to follow the martyrdom of the slaves and their non-violent combat for the recognition of their rights. The recent events showed that the dream of Martin Luther King: “I have a dream…” is still not reached. I returned to Fuller State Park with a temperature difficult to support. To click on the photo below to visualize the photo gallery.
On Thursday, July 30 I began the trip which was to lead me to Kansas City, MO, that is to say approximately 800 km. I had defined the most direct way in time. Around midday I arrived in an old village, Hardy, whose architecture points out the westerns spaghettis. I lunched on the spot before carrying on my way. From 16:00 I sought a place of bivouac. Not seeing anything I stopped on the small carpark of Diggins' commuter at the edge of the hwy #60 forecasting a night hot and noisy.
Contrary to my waiting I spent peaceful night, only, in the small hour, the thundering horns of trains awoke me and not the rumbling of trucks. I remained on the HWY #13 until Harrisonville where I bivouacked on closed Weight Station. On the way as in all the counties having a Amish community panels request the motorists to respect tilburies. Then an informative signpost invited travellers to visit the old downtown of Clinton where the buildings are out of red bricks.
The bivouac was peaceful, certainly trucks arrived in the night but without noise of engine! I was going early to see the buildings Art-Deco, according to Lonely-Planet, At the crossing of Broadway and W 10th St but not terrible, the LP propose other places where I did not go; moreover my compact camera was broken down of battery. I went to Visitor Center not far from the WWI Museum and Memorial which I visited the afternoon.
The morning occurred at Nelson-Atkins Museum of art whose architecture represents the net of a ground of badminton and so that the visitor is convinced by it immense flying of badminton precedes it. As for the other museums of art I concentrated on the rooms of painting and obviously of the French school. For the lunch of midday I sacrificed to the traditional BBQ of Missouri at very famous Joe's. I started by making a queue during half an hour before providing to appreciate Ribs & Brisket Dinner which will not leave me an imperishable memory. To click on the photograph to visualize the photograph gallery
At the beginning of afternoon I returned to the WWI Museum & Memorial. It is surmounted by Liberty Memorial offering a panoramic sight of the city. The museography is superb and very didactic as in all the modern museums in the USA. It is the best museum devoted to the World War I which was not given to visit. It is worth the returning; moreover the ticket of entry makes it possible to visit it twice. I found a bivouac not far from Visitor Center of Lawrence on the way for Topeka. To click on the photograph to visualize the photograph gallery
Yesterday at the beginning of evening a neighbor of the way of my bivouac came to visit to me intrigued by my truck. We exchanged information. He offered me the boo: Kansas, Off the Beaten Path. Then we built together on my on my navigation computer under QuoVadis a superb road, Scenic River Road, to go from Lawrence to Topeka. I regaled myself while remembering Transpyrenean. Thank you Matt.
In Topeka I stopped to visit Brown vs National Board of Education Historic Site installed in Monroe Elementary School. It recalls the combat of African-Americans for desegregation at the school. The museum covers the whole the movement for the equality of the Civil Rights. Then I establish my bivouac at KOA of Topeka. To click on the photograph to visualize the photograph gallery