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Wandering USA: The King and Other Things

The day after my failed attempt at getting Murphy fixed, I got up at 6am and went to MHC Ford in Memphis, TN. Once again, this was an all day service trip, so when I got hungry I figured I could walk to Burger King 2 blocks away. I told the service manager my plans, and he blurted out, “No you’re not.” Apparently prostitution is prominent on this particular road in Memphis and abductions are a common occurrence. I was definitely not walking to Burger King, but they gave Legedu and me a ride. Since I left California, I think I’ve had the best luck with mechanics anyone could possibly hope for. Eventually Murphy was up and running better, so I headed to the Graceland RV park and bought my ticket to see the home of The King the next morning. As mesmerized as I was to see this place, it was much too similar to Disneyland. By 11am so many people were in the house that you couldn’t really walk around at all. I was happy I got there when they opened at 9am, but I was so irritated a few hours later that I couldn’t wait to leave. Crowds THAT crowded make me really uncomfortable. At his grave site, I teared up a little bit. It’s rough being born too late to witness someone that awesome in person. I’ve loved Elvis ever since Sydney (you remember Sydney from Beaches, Trees

and Tsunamis and Abra Kanabra) introduced me to his legacy. Elvis is still amazing. That night I HAD to try Marlowe’s, mostly because they would pick me up in a pink limo, but also because Elvis used to eat there. In the pink limo, I met a couple that was picked up from The Heartbreak Hotel. They invited me to eat with them and then to stay on their farm in Virginia or Vermont sometime.

Unfortunately I think I lost their contact info. Anyway, the next day I left and headed back into Mississippi to make my way to central Alabama. 30 miles down the highway, I realized I was smelling gas. I hadn’t gotten any on my hands, so I stopped to check for a leak… again. Just behind the front tire on the driver’s side gas was nearly pouring from underneath. Awesome. I went back inside the RV and called my new good friends at MHC Ford. They did just replace the fuel pump.. maybe something got messed up in the process. They called a tow service and I eventually made it back to their service center at about 3 or 4 in the afternoon on the Friday before Memorial Day weekend. Apparently someone tried to rig my fuel line after severing the end of it… which I was aware of, but was told was fixed by the mechanics who replaced my engine in California…

MHC replaced my fuel like for free and helped me file a claim with Good Sam to get the tow paid for. It was not their fault, but they did their best to help me out. Good people make bad situations so much more tolerable. I headed toward Alabama and ended up in Tupelo, Mississippi, the birthplace of Elvis Presley. I was too tired to drive any more so I pulled over under a bright light at Walmart and slept until 7am. The next day I finally made it into Alabama, and I looked and felt like I’d been through hell to get there. I’m telling you, Mississippi is a freaky place… I think the gate to Hell is hidden there.



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I'm a 24 year old writer and full-time wanderer. My dog, Legedu (Leg-a-doo), and I just finished a trip in my 23 year old motorhome wandering through half of the vast USA. Armed with an annual national park pass, a camera and my pen, I'm determined to see everything this country has to offer. Next Spring I will set out once more to travel through the rest of the states.As a Master's Graduate at the School of International Service at American University, I'm fascinated by culture and societal conflict. This is the story of my ultimate global cultural immersion. I'll get to know the culture of my own country intimately and then set out to meet the rest of the world.

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