We stumbled on this exit somewhat serendipitously. I wasn’t really thinking about it, when I saw a sign on the right: “Tupelo – Birthplace of Elvis – Next Exit”.
Oh right. That guy.
My traveling companion grew up on and continues to adore this musical icon. I was not similarly indoctrinated (we were more of a Beatles family), but the passions of those I care about quickly become my own passions, because passion has to be one of the sexiest things in the world.
In other words, seeing this sign was pretty darned exciting, for the both of us.
We spent the afternoon strolling around his house and his church, then climbing an insane amount of steps up a hill adjacent to the site, to get a few shots of the above statue. There were plaques nearly every step of the journey, with quotes from people whose lives were clearly impacted by their interactions with Elvis as he was coming of age.
It struck me that you hear all the time about the screaming fans and the respect he gets from fellow musicians, but this was almost exclusively about Elvis, the person.
Granted, it was still fraught with hero-worship, that thing you do when you knew someone in high school who now has a million followers on social media, and you’re like, wow, I knew that person once! Your brain instantly wants to recount all the ways that person was kind, talented, and bound for greatness. You’ll probably never really know if any of that is objectively true. It’s just what the brain does, in retrospect.
Still, it was a fascinating stop, and I’m glad we suffered the intense heat in order to learn more about the man, prior to the weight of his crown.
Shot on Google Pixel 3, black and white filter
Other stops on our Super Summer Southern Sizzler Tour: