Saturday, March 29, 2003

MTF Lunch - Memphis, TN

When Jerry mentioned having Indian food at an MTF Lunch I didn't think too many folks would take it too well. Being the international man of mystery that I am I jumped right on the idea of having Indian food. Besides, we were going to Memphis, TN and if the Indian food wasn't adequate, there was plenty of BBQ around to tickle any taste bud. As it turns out some of us decided to make a night out of it and take in some beer, BBQ and blues.

I met Doug out on I-30 and US 69 at 5:15a Saturday morning. Don was to meet us there too, but Friday night he indicated he wasn't feeling too well and may not show up or just meet us in Memphis. Not surprisingly, Don showed up just about the time Doug and I were going to head over to the McDonald's across the street for some coffee. Don's wife wasn't too pleased about him leaving the house, but I'm sure she knew it was the best he could do for her. I told Don a good depth charge of Indian food was the best thing for an upset stomach. A good dose of curry would piss off the pain enough for it to leave.

After a little breakfast we hit the road and planned on meeting Jerry, Bo and Jim somewhere east of Little Rock. Doug took the lead. After getting to Memphis Doug mentioned he was trying to keep a "steady and deliberate" pace. He did a good job. Don was content to hang out in back and watch our six.

We made it to the other side of Little Rock in good shape and on time. Interestingly enough, the construction along I-30 between Texarkana and Little Rock is getting a little better. I'm still not impressed, but I wasn't pissed off this time either. Each stretch of finished interstate is preceeded by a series of signs that say something to the effect:

For a Smoother Ride

Another Project Completed

Arkansas Department of Construction

OK. I made the 'Construction' substitution. But it is getting better.

Jerry, Bo and Jim were already at the meeting spot when we rode up. We stopped and chatted for a while and waited for anyone else who was going to show. There was plenty of time to get to the restaurant in Memphis. There's still a good bit of construction west of Memphis. I wish I could say it's getting better, but I sure didn't notice any significant progress. That's not to say nothing is being done. It just means I didn't notice any.

We got to the restaurant with plenty of time before lunch. We found a nice strip of parking spots and took up residence and waited for others to show. Bob arrived directly after us. Then Bill and Joe. Then Cruzin' Al. Then Larry and Martha. It looks like I was wrong. Plenty of folks were willing to check out Indian food. I think for several folks it was the first time to even try Indian food. I didn't hear any complaints about the food.

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Bo, Bob, Don, Jerry, Doug, Jim

Bo, Bob, Don, Jerry, Doug, Jim

Jim's ST1100

Cruzin' Al's Chromed Wing

After we started eating, Alan showed up. I told him he was 8 minutes late, the checkpoint was closed and he DNF'd the lunch. However, we'd never deny anyone a plate of food.

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Bob, Don, Martha, Larry, Bo, Al, Doug, Joe, Bill

Don, Bo, Al, Doug, Joe, Bill

Bob, Don, Jerry, Martha, Larry, Jim

Bob, Don, Jerry, Martha, Larry, Jim

Bo, Al, Doug, Joe, Bill, Martha


After lunch we all kicked some tires, told more lies and enjoyed each other's company for a spell.

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Bob, Alan

Joe, Bob, Alan, Larry

Don, Bill, Joe

Some of us planned on spending the night in Memphis to enjoy some good BBQ, blues and beer. After lunch we all checked into the Hampton Inn on Peabody. After chillin' for an hour or two Doug called and said he was thirsty. That's funny. I was parched myself, but hadn't taken a shower yet. So I hopped in the shower, got ready to drink beer, eat some BBQ and listen to some blues.

We all met down in the lobby and walked around the corner to Beale street where we started the bar-hopping process. We found some good live music, had a couple of beers and got hungry. Bill was real familiar with Memphis and decided to take us all to a real rib joint - Interstate BBQ in south Memphis. We walked back to the hotel to call a cab. When Bill asked the lady at the front desk to call us cab she asked where we were going. Bill said, "Interstate BBQ" and she replied, "How do you know about Interstate BBQ?" That's a good sign!! When the cabby arrived we all piled into the van and told him where we were headed. He said something like, "I don't even go to that part of Memphis. And I'm Black!" That's not a good sign.

But the ribs are so damn succulent you could eat them for breakfast! Interstate BBQ is definitely worth the time and risk to life and limb.

After the ribs we went back to Beale, had a few more beers, listened to some damn good blues and called it a night. I'm happy to say I have no photographic evidence of the evening's festivities and no one got killed or thrown in jail. That's a good thing too, because I forgot my camera.

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