Christmas with Elvis

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Christmas in the Deep South is colder than I once promised a certain someone, to lure him into moving here. Much colder. And without the charm of a light dusting of snow to get you in the spirit. For a secular humanist, I do try. But even with a tree dancing with ornaments in the front room, our house is lacking in Christmas tradition.

This Christmaslessness has a history. Byrne and Duncan, both Jewish, lived here since 1969. When I lived with her, after Duncan died, the most Yuletide-y it got around here was the Nutcracker ballet. Which, frankly, we both hated and suffered through simply to keep the Byrne Miller Dance Theatre in the black.

So heading deeper south to ring in the season made as much sense as sitting around Beaufort waiting for it to snow. Winter is a great road trip season, if you don’t mind plenty of parking (and free) in every town. In 2,000 miles we didn’t run into any other tourists, except for a young couple from Vienna. So we had Elvis to ourselves.

His birthplace, that is. Worlds away from the tourist-mecca of Graceland is the two room wood house in Tupelo that started it all. A mile up the main drag is the hardware store (still a hardware store) where his mother talked him out of a rifle and bought him his first guitar instead.

The house is surrounded by a museum now, and a fancy park. But it’s the stark reality of seeing the humble beginnings of a star that made this visit the best way to get into the spirit.

I think I’ll go put on my Elvis sings Christmas CD – glad to be home by Christmas afterall.

3 thoughts on “Christmas with Elvis

    John Warley said:
    December 19, 2010 at 3:14 PM

    Hey, even for secular humanists like you and me, it seems kings are relentlessly born in humble buildings like mangers or double-wides. Tupelo had the same effect on me. Have a “blue, blue Christmas . . . “

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      teresabrucebooks said:
      December 20, 2010 at 9:01 AM

      he did leave the building, though, as soon as possible. Cheers

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    Suzanne Larson said:
    December 20, 2010 at 7:02 AM

    Your word, “Christmaslessness” give me a sense of peace. Thank you for that, Teresa! It sounds anxiety free… not having to spend a fortune on everyone and no sweet baked goods to surge what’s left of the frazzled nervous system. That must be nice! The failure of the magic to produce itself as anticipated can really be a big let down, too for those of us prome to self pity. But the twinkling lights and the music are lovely. The bourbon is good, too, if you are allowed… and I am not! Byrne and Elvis! Two dynamos! He would have loved you both and bought you each a cadillac! “Thank ya… Thank ya very much”…

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