Sunday, August 10, 2014

Mickey Mouse & Memphis

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
- Mark Twain

It has been an amazing and challenging year so far.  I have had the opportunity to travel so much in just the first seven months, and I've been blessed to share these journeys with my dearest friends. In April I had a visit from Cheryl & Sam (Singaporeans going to University in Manchester) and we went on a road trip to the Smoky Mountains. We stayed in a log cabin down in Murphy, North Carolina and had such a blast. I have never been to this part of the country before, and the beauty and simplicity of the region took my breath away.

View of the Smoky Mountains near the Fontana Dam, North Carolina
When the month of May came around I found myself on an airplane headed to Orlando, home of Mickey Mouse. There I met up with my friend Katherine and her boyfriend Brandon. At the time they were living in Fort Myers, but after my visit to them they were packing up their bags and moving to San Antonio, Texas. We had an amazing time and we went to a little place there called Disney World. You may have heard of it. What can I say about my trip to Disney except that...

I freaked out. When I say I freaked out I mean that I was shedding tears of joy whilst walking down Main Street, USA. And I sang Be Our Guest while standing in line to eat at the Beauty and the Beast restaurant. And I basically talked in Disney movie quotes the whole time. Don't even get me started on the parade. When I saw Minnie and Mickey.... well let's just say I needed some more Kleenex tissues.

Kat & I at Disney
While in Florida we also went shopping (no surprise there!) and found time to go to Universal Studios for more good times. We rode the Transformers ride four times and it was AMAZING! Not to brag or anything, but technically we saved the world with Optimus Prime that day. You're welcome, world. ;) I also had a near death experience while riding Return of the Mummy. At first the ride started out all nice and Kat assured me it was not a roller coaster. Yeah... right. The next thing I knew the room was on fire and I was being hurtled through Lord knows where going at a ridiculous speed screaming like a two year old at Walmart. Needless to say, I only rode it once.

After I came back from Florida it was bittersweet. I figured all my traveling opportunities for this year were done, and all my visits with distant friends were over. I've never been so glad to be wrong in my whole life.

One of my dearest friends from Manchester, Natalie, was coming to the States and wanted to visit me in KC. Words cannot describe how excited I was when I got that message. She stayed with us for the week of July 4th and we had the best time. If there is one thing you gotta know about Nat, it's that she loves music. And I just couldn't let her come all the way to the midwest and then not take her to the greatest place around: Graceland. So we headed out on the open road with Elvis as our final destination in a road trip of epic proportions. We did more on this three day trip in Memphis than I have done in all my other trips there combined.

The National Civil Rights Museum - Memphis, TN
Beale Street, Graceland, Rock N Soul Museum, National Civil Rights Museum, Sun Studios... we pretty much hit the highlights of Memphis in less than 72 hours. By the time we rolled back into Kansas City just after midnight on the 4th of July, needless to say we were a little tired. But we had a great bbq with family that day, and then I took Nat to her very first baseball game. It was a beautiful night and a great way to end the holiday. But that wasn't all I had in store for my lovely friend. The next day we went somewhere I've always wanted to go, and somewhere that was only 30 minutes away from where I live. And what place would this be, you ask?

The Glore Psychiatric Museum, of course! Thankfully they didn't keep us, although judging from my interpretations of the inkblots perhaps I should have checked myself in. Although I still maintain that one blot looked exactly like a chicken riding a motorcycle. What? It did!

Medical Examiner Lewis, at your service - Glore Psychiatric Museum, St. Joseph, Missouri
I shed more than a few tears at the airport when she left, but I have a feeling she'll be back in KC before long. I think we made a good impression. :)

I'm not saying there will be no more trips this year, because who really knows what the future has in store. Until I find myself at the airport or in my car on the open road again, I've taken up a new hobby to fill my time. I'm learning how to play the guitar via the internet. So we'll see what happens. I'm definitely not Johnny Cash, but hopefully by Christmas I will be able to play at least part of Silent Night. :) It's an adventure for sure!

With my Fender
I will not allow this long time between blog posts. Even if I have to start blogging about all these superhero movies that are coming out and blowing my mind! I mean Guardians of the Galaxy... wow. Love it. And Doctor Who is starting again this month! I can't even. Too much excitment. This may become a nerdy blog (not that it isn't already). ;) Love to you all.


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