Thursday, November 05, 2009
Finally beyond the mall! We took I-16 east to Savannah and located the Visitor Center and since it was Sunday the parking was free. We loaded up on maps and directions, a cake sample, and information from a very nice lady, who happened to be from Miami and told us how to get a free shuttle around town. We decided against the shuttle because we were pressed for time, so I drove through town towards River Street. On the way we looked at as many tree lined streets and squares as possible until we reached a beautiful park which butted River Street and it's many shops and restaurants. Some locals told us that it's best to park there behind River Street than go down to River Street and not find parking. So we did. We put some quarters in the meter parking and we were on our way. On our walk we found Shanky's grill and you know what? The name might not say much, and in fact it looked like a typical Sports Bar, but it had the best Bisque I had enjoyed in a long time. Though I only had water and lemon, I say "Cheers" to them! And Cheers to lovely Savannah. I hope to be back soon.
You can almost imagine Scarlett and Rhett strolling down the oak tree lined streets. Or was it Rhett in a fancy carriage speeding away? Oh I got carried away and forgot it was fiction, but there must have been some real life man or woman that they were modeled after don't you think? Any way, the charm is still there and there is so much to do that really a couple of hours doesn't do this city honor, but this was all the time I had. One of the loveliest things this city can boast about is its dainty squares that are strategically placed across the city and each one is carefully tended with flowers, tall trees, and benches. You can see them in the pictures. Considering I have been up and down this sea coast in these past 30 years, always bypassing Savannah for Charleston, I realize it was about time I stopped!!
If you want more information about River Street click here
The good thing about driving is you can stop when you want and take your time. Well, my good friend Ari and I saw this beautiful field filled with trees, horses, and autumn colors beckoning us to stop. So we did. Before taking pictures of the horses though, an untouched dandelion caught my attention. It looked like a sparkler with its little stars. Then I moved on to the horses lazily moving along the pasture, and the trees in the distance. Who could resist. Later we kept going down the road and saw a neat roadside Market in York and got the best apples. You need to stop since they have at least eight different types of apples, including Fiji, Rome, Golden Delicious, and other which I can't remember. Fortunately they have some for sampling. You just have to be careful with the small hornets that hang around them. I ventured to sample a cameo apple, and like lightening that little hornet was on it, but I was able to zip away with my apple. Glad I did because I fell in love with those apples. I am down to 3 since I gave some away. I hate that, when I buy something that is hard to get. But oh well, there is next year. Cameo apples, check. The last picture by the way is in Chester SC almost on our way back to I 77 via state road 97. Did you see the price for Coca Cola? 5 cents. Boy have times changed!
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
It's funny how the nicest things are just around the corner. In this case around the corner from Camden SC. Last weekend I went to see the changing of seasons in North and South Carolina. What I really wanted to do was go up to the Blue Ridge Mountains in North Carolina, but it just didn't work out. A cold front was moving through and it was shaking the trees and we could see lots of leaves twirling in misty showers as they fell. In fact I did get to the foothills at Hickory NC but we realized we were not going to see much the further up we went. There was only rain ahead of us. Already at the foothills you could see many of the leaves had actually turned brown on the trees themselves and many others were only half full. So the best place for viewing leaves was right there in South Carolina, not far from my friend's house in Camden SC.
We took Rt 34, just off of Luggoff, a road off of I-20, which runs parallel to the main high way. It is such a lovely scenic drive and if you have a good eye you will see quiet waters and squawking ducks, slipping across a lake. We also saw mysterious roads leading to misty pastures, sprinkled with autumn leaves. So you don't have to go far, but if you continue down the road there's more.
Rt. 34 leads into a small quiet town called Ridgeway SC. Right in the center of down town, across from the city hall, stands, Ruff's, an old hardware store, where you can buy nails by weight, tools of all sorts, cold boiled peanuts, and Coca Cola, in old fashioned bottles. You can also see the relics they have of days gone by, since this store was built in 1901, this one being the newer of two stores; the other one being built years earlier, in 1840! So it is almost like shopping inside a museum since the store is lined with early 19th Century American curios. Some of those curios are on display outside, including that huge book. I thought it was a Bible at first but it's a dictionary. Quite large, isn't it? So if you have a chance, go visit, since the people are friendly and the peanuts, well they will reheat! Check out Ruff's website
Just a caveat: Ridgeway is known to be a speed trap since you are coming into town from either the Interstate or RT 34 where the speed is 55 miles. Slowing down to 35 and then to 25, has to be done, to avoid a traffic ticket since they are somewhat particular about that there.