The Procession of the Ducks at the Peabody Hotel
September 1, 2017
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We love a good hotel lobby, and this is a beauty.
The Peabody considers its lobby the South's front parlor,
and it certainly has a nice genteel feel (even if the
"charcuterie" proved to be a disappointingly paltry
collection of cold cuts and cheddar cheese).
But no one comes here for the charcuterie. The Peabody Ducks
are the star attraction, and they make a terrific show twice
a day as the ducks come down in the elvator and parade through
the lobby on a red carpet into the fountain, where they swim
all day until the afternoon procession back to the elevator
and their grand coop up on the roof. Anthony, who is only the
fifth Duckmaster in the seven decades the hotel has been
presenting the speactacle, is the host of the show and, I guess,
of the hotel itself.
On the way out of town, we passed the statue and tomb of
Nathan Bedford Forrest, one of the Confederacy's most talented
generals -- and the first grand wizard of the KKK. This was the
season when towns across America were quesstioning what to do
about their monuments to Confederate generals, with some calling
for the removal of these tributes to men who fought to preserve
slavery while others warned against erasing their history. General
Forrest's statue appears to be guarded by a police cruiser, ensuring
(for now, at least) his continued presence.
We also made a quick stop in front of Graceland, to read the tributes
to the King, scratched in marker on the wall in front of the big house
where he died back in 1976. It was our second visit (first in 1987),
and for the second
time we decided not to pay to go in. Maybe the gates are most of it.