Elvis Presley's Graceland
3734 Elvis Presley Boulevard · Memphis, TN
Ladies and gentlemen, Photographicus Tourista. And in his most natural habitat, Graceland.
More specifically it's Elvis's TV room. And notice the bolt of lightning on the wall to the right? Along with the letters TCB, that was Elvis Presley's personal insignia. It stands for Taking Care of Business in a Flash. (A flash, incidentally, being the one thing you couldn't use in here. That's why this picture stinks.)
Overall, however, I found Graceland rather understated. I had expected an extravagant home located amidst well-kept, open pastureland. But to my disappointment, it was right off a dirty downtown street, with a museum and plenty of shops across the way.
Once on the Graceland property, however, you wouldn't know. It's set on a beautiful piece of land, closed in just enough that you don't notice the traffic a short distance away. The house itself is modest, with just a couple of additions housing Elvis's gold records and the like.
The front entrance is kind of nice, though, guarded by two attractive stone lions. The guides were kind enough to hold back the steady flow of official Graceland tour buses long enough for me to pop off a couple of photos.
Next, we skip straight to the end of the tour - you'll have to go there yourself to see any more. Incidentally, don't expect to go upstairs. They won't let you near it. (We all know why.) For special events, however, the tour guides will allow you to see the bedroom.
And another thing that disappointed me - the tour guides weren't even tour guides. They were more tour guards than anything else. The real tour guide is a voice on a cassette tape you carry with you as you wind your way through the grounds. It isn't all that bad, though, because you can stop and start it as you please, taking the tour at your own pace. I guess you could spend all day there if you really wanted to.
Anyway, the final stop on the tour is the Meditation Garden, where Elvis is buried (or so they claim.) The marker is pictured here, with his personal emblem appearing once again at the bottom, as it does in the TV Room: TCB with a flash of lightning.