…around the world and back, and you won’t have to move, just sit still. *wowowowowowo*
Title and excerpt sung to Depeche Mode’s World in My Eyes, just after the 30th year anniversary of DM’s Violator, one of the greatest synth albums OF ALL TIME.
And because I’M LOSING IT with this quarantine.
Last week, I told y’all about the decor of Graceland. (Was that last week?) Today, I’m telling you about the Peabody Hotel about 15 minutes away, in downtown Memphis.
The Peabody was built in 1925 as the “South’s Grand Hotel.” It’s most known for its ducks, which wade in the fountain located in the main lobby.
The Duckmaster–we’ll call him the con-DUCK-tor; sorry, I couldn’t resist–marches them down from their “duck palace” (his words) on the roof of the building, into the elevator, across the hall, and into the fountain at 11 am every day. He then does a presentation around 4:45 pm and marches them back up at 5. They roll out the red carpet, and kids (not adults–I’m looking at you, lady with the phone in front of us) are invited to sit along the carpet. It’s all very precious. And a nearly 90-year tradition.
The hotel itself is old world. Dimly lit. Dark wood. Brass. Opulent. The rooms are small but well appointed. Beds are maybe full size but so fluffy you get over it.
We stayed in the hotel for the entire night instead of venturing out. This was mostly because COVID-19 had just come on the radar, but also because we don’t know much about Memphis–other than Graceland–and we like to end our trips on a high (read: fancy) note.
We ate in the bar. An 80-something-year-old former music teacher played the piano and told us his life stories in between songs. Like being a black teacher of white kids during integration in the 1950s. And about how one of his biological children played music in the White House for former president Barack Obama. (The juxtaposition of that made me want to cry happy tears.) He was an excellent showman who was smart enough to ask me to play the backup tambourine, given my history as an excellent show(wo)man myself. *Not really, I just have no shame.*
We drank in the lobby.
We visited the duck palace.
We went to bed.
We went home the next day. (See Graceland post for an account of the COVID-19 and travel-related stress of the trip.)
If we’re ever allowed to travel again, and if you ever find yourself in Memphis, the Peabody is a must. Say hello to the piano man for me. *I’m not crying, you’re crying.*