Saturday, July 10, 2010

Memphis - The Music Capital!

Mmeemmpphhiiss, wow what should i say! I didn't have many expectations at all for this city, but it sure turned out to be one of the most vibrant cities we've visited! We arrived during the day and didn't do much really. Everyone was tired after a long drive from Dallas so we just hung out by the pool and got some tan and bathed for hours. The next day was pretty much the same except for some of us who went to Bestbuy for a while.

In the evening the same day we went downtown, which is very nice. Clean and a lot of nice buildings. Since 4th of July was coming up there was a lot going on in Baile St; it was all closed off and zoo many people were out in the street drinking and having fun! We went eating in a great bar/restaurant, got completely stuffed and then headed for Baile St.

Me and Torgeir didn't really feel too good both during and after dinner so we all didn't really do much out either. We walked the street up and down a couple of times, looking at all he people actually, because that was very fun. One guy did this craaaaaazy trick, check out the vid: (Im trying to post the vid but theres a problem. Check in later)

After a while me, Lars and Mats went back to the motel, all worn out. The rest of the group stayed out partying.

The next day was sightseeing day! What a GREAT day this was as we first started our tour at the legendary Sun Studio: Where Rock & Roll was born. Memphis is the home-city of Elvis if you didn't know, which is why Sun Studio is so special. This is the place where he first started his legendary career, paying 4 bucks to get to record the first time and after him, a lot of many big artists continued to record in the studio, stars like Johnny Cash, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison and even U2.

Sun Studio is also where history continued to be be written, as Elvis, Cash, Lewis and Carl Perkins united into The Million Dollar Quartet. Another historical moment was also when Perkins, Orbison, Lewis, and Cash met up and became the Class of '55.
Beeing at Sun was such an amazing experience, especially for me, as music is the air that i breathe. The guide we had was also fantastic because he told us all this history in such an incredible way, a way that mesmerized the whole crowd; waking up the teenager in the older audience.

I just didn't wanna leave, and then he told us that the studio is still a functioning recording studio. in my dreams im recording there…
Anyway, haha i got a little dreamy right there. We got to touch and use the mic that the King himself had used when he was there, so many years ago. Just a GREAT experience!

Right after this, the wonderful journey continued as we drove over to Graceland: Home of Elvis "The King" Presley.

WHAT A LIFE did he live. The mansion was huge with so many rooms, so much variety from one room to another and so much furniture and decor and all sorts of things that just wow'ed you away. He had everything you wanna have in a house, and he had a big-ass carport wish siiiick sick cars. One of them was actually meant for Frank Sinatea, but he got the hold of it, after sweet-talking with the boss. So much cool stuff, and also motorcycles. We also got to see his private jets where he had gold-buckles in the seats!!

We got to listen to a lot of old recordings, at both Sun Studio and at Graceland, all of his Golds, Platinums, Diplomas and trophies of all sorts were there, all his costumes from the shows and from movies.
All of his life is gathered there at Graceland; everything, even his death and his grave. The grave of Elvis lay beside his parents and his grandmother in a area out in his garden, designed for meditation and relaxation. It was very pretty and peaceful there.
So we walked in Memphis with Elvis on our minds, and we left the town with so much more knowledge and so many memories.
I don't wanna leave, Memphis is the music capital; it should be my home.

- vic -

Friday, July 09, 2010

Howdy Texas!

So we're finally humans and civil again, living at Motel 6 every night, ever since the horrible camping in Danton. We hit the road towards Dallas and personally, i coudnt wait to see those skyscrapers again, pretty fed up with no beds, no air-conditioning or no showers for days.

The trip to Texas was pretty much the same as before Lucas, only in the day, so we got through the driving with almost no problems. On Monday we went downtown first to check it out and then we tracked down the mark where John F. Kennedy was shot. Then we wanted to go on a roof on a skyscraper and so we asked the security at Thanksgiving Tower or whatever its called, because they usually let people on the roof. But that day they were actually shooting a TV-show called The Good Guys. Thats pretty cool. The fact that they were shooting!

We went on to a shopping-center outside Dallas and i actually got water in my mouth by walking around with all the stores, GOD what a long time ago, i thought!! Shoes <3 haha. We used some bucks over there and i think everyone appereciated it a lot after beeing so long out in the "bushes"!

The next day we headed to Fort Worth, which is, i think, a part of Dallas because on the Weather Channel they write Dallas/Fort Worth.

Anyway, we were in Stockyard first and this place is like almost all original from the western time, with real cowboy saloons, shops with real brands like Stetson and we saw actual cowboys too! They werent cowboys like before but they looked like people who live in there and work in the saloons and stuff, and they were wearing worn-out cowboy-boots and hats so i guess they were modern cowboys of some sort!

Me and Lars checked out a real rodeo arena which was open for visitors to see. It was pretty cool, heres a (bad) picture!
Back at the motel we checked out the weather by coincidence and learned that there was a tropical storm called Alex, later referred to as a hurricane, coming over the South Coast. Luckily we were gonna go to Memphis on Thursday so we werent gonna have all that bad weather (again). In the afternoon, 6 of us went to a sports-center and me and Lars drove downtown. We didnt really do much, only looked around, and then it started raining so we hung out on a cafe. It was really nice though. I liked Fort Worth a lot because it was very pretty and clean there, is that what i always say?? But really, it was! And i like the western look about the city and the shops and bars and all :)
Then in the evening/night we went to a Irish pub downtown which was called Durty Molly, yes, with a U, and boy did we drink too much haha. We havent had a time like that since Las Vegas so yeah, we took it aaaall the way out! I dont have much else to say about that night because i really dont remember much. Only a lot of tequila.........
The next day we were all pretty hungover, some worst than others. We started with breakfast at Denny's and then the boys went to a shooting range and fun there while me and Runa got mani- and pedicure! That was sooo good, you cant imagine!

The trip goes on towards Memphis!!!!!

- vic -

Monday, July 05, 2010

Patriots, Weird Roadtripping and Our Last Camping!

South Dakota is the Mt. Rushmore state which was our first stop here. We drove in to the Black Hills Forest; beautiful landscapes on green hills and in to Keystone, where the mountain is. On the way we drove trough a place called Deadwood, that just like Keystone, is a western town with cowboy-themed fasades, it was really cool.
There was a lift up to a little top that advertised for a great scenic view over to Mt. Rushmore and it costed $8, and the ride up And down was really nice but we all felt very ripped off when we saw the view. Basically we didnt see anything, just 4 faces faaaaaaaar far away. When we got down i complained, the sunnmøring as i am haha (a norwegian thing if you english readers dont know).

So we drove a little further and got to see the mountain up close over at the Mt. Rushmore monument park. It was really cool to finally get to see it. The four presidents are, for you who dont know: George Washington, USAs first president, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt. Its amazing that theyve been carved out in a mountain. At 9 PM a show started where they were suppouse to light up the mountain. The time is set back or forward for every state we come in to so we rushed over around 8.20 PM to get good seats before the show was supposed to start when the time was actually 7.20 PM. Yeeeeeeeey. We sat there and waited for over 1 & 1/2 hous..

Anyway, as we waited, an american flag was lit up the entire time and when the show started everyone said a prayer for it. Then we saw a movie about the american history and the role the four presidents played. Then for a finale, as they lit the mountain in Slow Motion, yeees thats right, slow motion, everyone sang the national anthem. It was a nice, um what should i call it, seremony maybe, but it was kinda heavy we think. We all know that americans are patriots but we didnt realize they were that much patriots until we saw this. Wow, thats all i can say!

We slept in Keystone for a night and the next day we went on to the Crazy Horse memorial. The memorial isnt finished so once again we felt ripped off as we payed $27 for a carload, (over at Mt. Rushmore we payed $10), BUT this place was AMAZING.

Personally i fell in love with the native americans which ive always loved, but this place showed their works over the years and all the incredible arts and crafts theyve made. Crazy Horse memorial is a tribute to all the indians all over America and Crazy Horse was their hero. One of the reasons why are because he turned down the opportunity to alliance with the Americans. Until this day, and the reason for why the memorial isnt finished is because the people who today are working on it, Still havent accepted anything from the government. All the money they have are donations from anyone who wants to donate and well, i think its great that they still dont accept. (The pic on the right is a miniature of how Crazy Horse is going to be like when its finished).

After all this we continued our trip down to a place called Hot Springs, not far from the border to Nebraska. We spent a night here and at the time there was a little arts and crafts festival, so we saw a lot of pretty little things people had made and there was a little music too. A very nice little place with great people and delicious China buffets!

The next day we hit the road for a looooong trip through Nebraska. Not far from the border we did a pit-stop at Carhenge which basically is a copy of the Stonehenge, only made of cars. Pretty cool and i dont know who on earth had it so boring that they did this project. Fun for tourists though!

After a long and narly drive with craaaaaazy thunder and lightning and rain, we stopped in Kansas, in a tiiiny place called Lucas to camp. The bad weather didnt come after us, thank God, but it was really creepy there because we met some people, two older guys, who seemed nice enough, but they were drinking, and when they were done talking to some of our guys they just lingered and hovered over us, not saying a word. We waited like forever and they never went inside their RV and i refused to go to sleep until they did but in the end they FINALLY got in. It was hard to fall asleep but in the end we all did, and well we're all still alive. All the boys had knives with them in the tents, just in case. Haha. We did a pit-stop at the Garden of Eden, another weird place, then we got the hell out of that town.

Heres a random pic from Lucas.. weird place. Just weird!

We passed trough Kansas the same day And we passed through Oklahoma and we didnt stop before we got to Texas. We got to a park around 10 PM and got a campsite in the woods. This was in a place outside Dallas called Danton. It was very warm and humid and it was way too many mosquitoes out there so we didnt bother to go all the way inn to our campsite; we just put up our tents on the road where there werent too much vegetation so that we wouldnt get eaten up by all the insects!! This was officially our LAST time tenting because it was sooo horrible and because we were finally in a city again: DALLAS!!!

PS: i kinda did this one in a hurry so sorry for not too many great pics or a weird text or whatever; ill try to make it up to you guys in the next one from TEXAS!!!!!

- vic -