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Draplin Design Co., North America
October 22, 2005
DDC:GAA:FT: 10222005:L07:D39
Posted at 11:14 PM


We woke up and it was “fall” outside. The prior couple days had been pretty steamy with temperatures reaching into those wretched “early 90s.” Not this morning. We woke up across the river from Vicksburg and it was 54 degrees. Brrr. My kind of weather. I tossed and turned all night. And hell, I was laid out completely flat in the back of the station wagon. Ryno didn’t fare too well in the driver’s seat. He was cold and uncomfortable. Poor fucker.

177. “Thawing out on the way back over to Vicksburg.”

We hopped over to Vicksburg, and headed north on 61. Just a couple miles out of town we came upon Reverend Dennis’ fantastical compound. Lots of pink, lots of red, lots of yellow. See it for yerself and repent.

178. “Repent!, no.01”
179. “Repent!, no.02”
180. “Repent!, no.03”
181. “Repent!, no.04”
182. “Repent!, no.05”
183. “Retreat!”

Kept on going, and rolled out of the forest and into the cotton field stretches that line the landscape all the way up to Memphis.

I’m not even gonna try to explain my take on the barren, run-down, impoverished state of this stretch. It isn’t my place. Hard living down there. Makes me very thankful for the opportunity I have been blessed with. Little town after little town, just ya get this feeling like ya either shouldn’t be there “gawking” like we were, or, you should just count yer blessings.

We were looking for juke jointsand old signs and shit to snap pics of. Instead, what we found were a lot of “Dollar General” soulsucker stores and old, boarded-up buildings. Pretty sad to see the scourge of “bargain shopping” that is sweeping the nation from every direction.

184. “On Highway 61…”
185. “Delinting.”
186. “Another little building that had seen better days.”
187. “A Party For Grownups.”
188. “Ce’Dell Davis plays a mean butter knife.”

On a brighter note: Clarksdale seemed pretty cool. A couple of kids run this place called, “Cat Head” which showcases local bluesmen, art and recordings. Fun stuff, and worth a stop the next you roll through, if ever.

Thought about: The blues. The crossroads. Robert Johnson. Fat Possom record deals. Cotton crops.

Listened to: R.L. Burnside. Ce’Dell Davis. Junior Kimbrough.

We rolled into Memphis sometime right before sundown. Right past that sweaty house Elvis used to live in, and through the tough neighborhoods south of town. The first thing we did once we got downtown was, “drive around all over the place.” We saw all sorts of stuff and settled on a place to crash down by the river. A “Comfort Inn” or something. Pretty uninspiring, as far as accommodations go. We got back into town, did some dinner, then enjoyed a frosty beverage at some little dive south of town.

189. “Nightfall over Memphis.”
190. “So is “well-prevserved wall signage, man.”

I like Memphis. The place has a good, gritty feel to it. Been there three times now. Always been good to me.

Got back to the room and played some guitar, recounting the last couple day’s sights. So much to see and take in. Lots ot think about. We feel asleep real late.

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