Dying to get back to the Delta
Garden & Gun this month got me nostalgic for the Delta. Julia Reed delved into ‘A Delta Original: How the humble tamale came to represent a region and its people.’ It is not online, so you will have to go get the magazine (February/March). You should anyway as the pages are filled with wonderful stories of the south and its people. My husband Vance regularly walks in from the mailbox with the magazine taunting me like he is going to dig into it first knowing the anticipation would drive me nuts.
Now after reading this edition, I am anxious to get to Mississippi for a trip. I have taken my hubby to Oxford where I attended Ole Miss for several years and he loves it. When we go for the UGA games, we usually make a week of it. Meals with John Currence at all of his fabulous restaurants is part of the program. Hours in Square Books although my husband probably likes The Library better (wink wink, the co-eds are the prettiest in the nation). A beer at Proud Larry’s lounging on their patio in the afternoon and coming back later for live music. My guilty pleasure of visiting with entrepreneur Anne Marie Varnell-Gordon in her fab men’s and women’s shops, Cicada. Catfish and brown bagging it at Taylor Grocery. Popping by Nielson’s to see sorority sister Amanda Lewis Hyneman. It all makes for a great trip.
But the next trip I want to make to Mississippi, I want Vance to experience the blues joints in the birthplace of the blues, Clarksdale, and some of the Delta’s finest offerings. I agree with Julia Reed in that a Delta tamale from Doe’s Eat Place in Greenville is on that list.
Maybe a spring trip should make it onto the calendar. I also spotted this in the magazine…
Greenwood, Mississippi, March 17-20
What kind of literary event mixes scholarly lectures and historic tours with juke joints and hot tamales? The Mississippi Delta Cultural Tour (March 17–20), naturally, an annual four-day book-analia that explores the writers, food, and lore of the region. Organized by the University of Mississippi’s Center for the Study of Southern Culture, the tour is based in Greenwood, where participants visit the Turnrow Book Company for a talk on William Faulkner, tour the prehistoric site of Native American ceremonial mounds, and eat supper at world-famous Doe’s Eat Place. Other highlights include a performance of scenes from Tennessee Williams’s A Streetcar Named Desire, a visit to the plantation house where Williams’s screenplay Baby Doll was filmed, a lecture on homegrown author Walker Percy given by literary scholar Marion Barnwell, a stop at Cat Head Records, and a can’t-miss outing to Club Ebony, the Indianola blues club owned by that laureate of the genre, B. B. King. southernstudies.olemiss.edu