Sunday, November 22, 2009

 

San Diego - Dallas - Memphis - Olive Branch

Today my son and I traveled from San Diego, California, through Dallas, Texas, to Memphis, Tennessee, to Olive Branch, Missisippi.

We were dropped off at the airport early in the morning. I was able to teach my little one about airports, security, carry on luggage, tickets, boarding passes, jetways, terminals, and concourses. We had a wonderful time watching all the parts of the wing move. I explained pitch, roll, and yaw, and we went over every square millimeter of the Boeing 757 emergency exit guide in the seatback pocket. We had our escape routes totally memorized.

The plane change in Dallas afforded two opportunities to take the tramway, since there was a gate change in between then time they announced it on the plane and the time we showed up at the gate. This gave me another opportunity to emphasize the importance of checking the monitors because "things change".

Michael bought his own Subway sandwich, and got a drink on the house for being a gentleman in line. He successfully negotiated a window seat with the gate agent for the flight from Dallas to Memphis.

We took the bus to Alamo rental cars and picked up a nice car. I used the new phone (Droid) to navigate, and experienced a few setbacks. The database didn't know about one-way entrances, and roads that were marked as "no left turn". This resulted in a detour through some really sad looking neighborhoods. Several boarded up houses and an entire apartment block boarded up and busted up, with "KEEP OUT" spray-painted ineffectually on the plywood. It looked pretty scary, and it was still daytime.

We got back on track on Union Avenue, and parked on Beale Street. Our destination was Hard Rock Cafe, Memphis, and we had stageside seats for our big dinner.





Hard rock cafe memphis

We bought t-shirts, we spent a lot of time looking at all the items displayed on the walls, we talked at length about Elvis, Beale Street, rock and roll, and playing the drums, since my son started playing the drums in the school band this year. In the gift shop, we were able to buy "Memphis" flame-decorated drumsticks!

While walking to the car, after a stroll around the somewhat-down-at-heel Beale Street Drag, I told him that his drum teacher would be quite impressed with his fancy new sticks. To this, he declared that he wanted to keep the drumsticks as a souvenir instead of using them! Alas, he takes after me. I might have to buy a second pair - one for keeping and one for using.

We're now in the hotel room. He's watching a football game and cheering for Chicago, and I'm working on various documents that have to do with understanding the NEON processor better, so that I can help add NEON support to a software package called FFTW. We're looking forward to more travel and adventure tomorrow.


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