& Clarksdale, MS
Thursday morning we headed north toward Clarksdale, Mississippi, the birth
place of the blues. Near Greenville we stopped at
Winterville Mounds State
Historic Site. This was an interesting stop because at that time
the mainstream media was just starting to hint at a
about the size and level of development of pre-Columbian
cultures in North America. Some academics are arguing that they were much
larger and better developed than we had previously thought. Having visited
and other pre-Columbian sites in
Latin America, we were optimistic about what we'd find.
But as it turns out, pretty much all you get to see are some... mounds.
Assuming memory serves, this was the temple mound:
Oh, so you don't believe that's a big mound. Well here's
Chris and the temple mound, for scale:
Matt didn't want to be left out, but he got a smaller mound (perhaps the
mound under a chieftain's or priest's hut?):
Natch, we had to include the
Princess of Pez. We tried to convince her to stand next to an ant hill instead,
but hey... she's the Princess and she gets what she wants:
Back on the road, we headed for Clarksdale,
the heart of the Mississippi Delta. It's not the world's most picturesque
destination, so content yourself with the prose. We kicked off the barbecue leg of our tour
with a late lunch (including an outstanding pulled pork sandwich)
Abe's, which lies at the legendary intersection of highways 61 and 49. That spot
may be the fabled crossroads where you can meet the devil at midnight to sell your soul
in return for your chops as a bluesman. They say
Robert Johnson did it... but he's not around to answer any questions.
Then we headed over to check out the
Delta Blues Museum. And before retiring, we tried and failed to find a good
spot to listen to some blues.