Wednesday, June 21, 2006

A Pen, A Rose, and a Bottle of Jack...

Don't ask what the three have in common. I'll tell you. They were three things I saw on top of William Faulkner's grave at Oxford. We got back this evening. It was a blast. I took probably 250 pictures. I originally thought I took 150, but then when I looked at the pix on the computer, I saw that I have over 150 on one card! Plus I had other pix on my first card so... I took a bunch of pictures.

We ate at Lambert's in Sikeston, MO on Monday en route to I-55 South. It was all right. I didn't catch my roll though. I did buy a shirt. And I did finish my gigantic Coke. The drink that was so big it was supposed to make me feel guilty.

Our hotel was pretty nice. Although, I'm easily impressed. Breakfast at the hotel was wonderful--they had waffle batter in cups (those Southerners really like their waffles) and I made one each day. Plus I had a bagel and some yogurt and a little fruit. I had grits the first day, but I wasn't hungry enough for them this morning.

Tuesday, we visited the University of Mississipi campus (better known as Ole Miss). Campus was awesome. Our guide was really nice too. In fact, everybody was nice in Mississippi. Oxford was a very pleasant place all the way around. It was so awesome to see the old buildings, many were Civil War and pre-Civil War era. It was cool to see the campus Faulkner writes a little about in Absalom, Absalom! as well. It was really awesome to see Rowan Oak, Faulkner's home where he composed many of his stories. In his study, he had written plot ideas on his walls. That was kind of cool. Makes me feel better for writing on my walls. It's creativity, baby.

I officially want a house build just like Rowan Oak. The property was beautiful and the layout of the house was gorgeous. Faulkner's daughter, Jill, would not allow them to have a gift shop there at Rowan Oak, and this is probably a good thing, because if they did, then yours truly would have bought at least one of everything.

We also saw the church Faulkner attended and the cemetery where he was buried. It was strange standing on the grave of my favorite author. I guess I felt it was the closest I'd ever been to Faulkner--it was a really weird and totally cool experience that I just can't describe.

I forgot to mention I thoroughly enjoyed the Faulkner Room in the Ole Miss library archives. Unfortunately, they did not allow pictures :( I really wanted pix of some of the original documents and stuff. BTW, they had what appeared to be an original copy of the lyrics to the song "Ode to Billy Joe" ("Billy Joe McAllister jumped off the Tallahatchie Bridge"). The Tallahatchie (sp?) runs through LaFayette County (Oxford is the county seat) and I got a pic of the Tallahatchie River and part of the bridge. FYI--I really dig that song too.

I finally ate at a Waffle House Tuesday. It was okay--not my favorite, but at least I can say I've eaten at one now. Other places we ate at include: Pizza Hut for supper Monday night, Subway for lunch Tuesday, and Arby's for lunch today.

I somehow, by the grace of God made it through Memphis, driving between 5:00 and 5:30 P.M. I really don't know what time it was. I probably couldn't have even told you my name at the time. That's all I want to say about that right now.

Vickie took the dump that ate Cleveland and managed to break the toilet in room A103 at Downtown Oxford Inn and Suites.

On a more serious note, I would really love to get into the University of Mississippi. I know the creative writing program is nigh on to impossible to get into, and I'm probably foolish, but I am going to try to apply anyway. Not tonight though, as I am far too tired. In fact, I'm really too tired to even update.

To Rach--I got your voicemail. I'll try to call you back later. I'm pretty tired tonight and plan on going to bed shortly. I read your blog--glad you posted pix--that's pretty cool.

To everyone, I will try to write more detailed stuff and include some pictures later. I'm extremely tired tonight (10 hours on the road in a van with 5 people and no air conditioner can wear you out to a surprising degree). I also plan on making a sort of scrapbook thing on the computer with pictures and writing about each thing. I may even get really ambitious and attempt to write poetry about some of the different places. Well, just thought I'd let you all know that we made it back and that I had a lot of fun. I need to get to bed now. I'll probably have to work tomorrow. And I need to see about picking up copies of the DEN from yesterday if they have any left at EIU. I really want copies of my column if I can get them.


Anonymous said...

Had a great time on the trip. Thanks for letting me come along.

Anonymous said...

Sounds like you had a good time! I totally understand what you mean about "being close" to Faulkner...not necessarily a fan but I've felt that feeling before. ;)

Wait, like you wanna go to school in MISSISSIPPI? Whoa!