Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Country Roads

We have left the South, driving through Florida, Georgia, both Carolinas, Virginia, a little bit of Maryland, Delaware and now in New Jersey. We had a great day in St Augustine and a fantastic couple of days in Charleston.

St Augustine is famous for its age - that picture is apparently of the oldest intersection in the US (and that is without taking my age into account)  - and the Old Town is full of wonderful shops. Well, wonderful if you like t-shirts and flipflops. Ever vigilant, though, LK spotted a bargain and we partook of the 2-for-1 sale of "Bacon Bloody Marys". These start with your basic vodka and tomato juice, added the usual enhancements (perhaps a tad heavy on the consomme) and then squeezed lunch into the glass, with a celery stick, a nice wedge of tomato, a good-sized piece of pickled okra and a green olive filled with feta. And, oh yes, a huge piece of bacon. These salads in a glass turned out to be so good that we converted the deal to a 4-for-2 sale and then walked along the waterfront back to our B&B.

 From St Augustine, we ended up in Charleston and spent several days looking at beautiful old buildings, a massive open market, gorgeous parks and fountains and, yes, lots of restaurants. Four different kinds of barbecue ribs, chicken etouffe, oyster po-boys, fried green tomatoes, a yellow spicy gazpacho, mussels, hush puppies and other treats I have forgotten. Let's just say that by the night I ordered grilled swordfish and broccoli, I felt that I was violating some secret eating code of the South. Looking around, I was pretty sure I was the only person in this very busy place that was making believe they were on the South Beach Diet.

From Charleston we headed to Myrtle Beach to spend the weekend with our new friends, Beth and Dave, One of the stranger things LK has noticed is that we have not really made any close friends where we live but manage to find people on cruise ships who are happy to let us mooch off them as we travel through their cities.

In Dave and Beth's case, they live about 4 hours away, but have a condo in Myrtle Beach and it was at the end of the wine cruise in November that they asked us to stay with them for the weekend we were passing by. It was a lovely place, overlooking the beach and close to anything you would want. 

This turned out to be the weekend that bikers gather in Myrtle Beach, and we saw the tell-tale packs of what appeared to be mostly weekend warriors heading down the highway as we entered. But having once stumbled into Deadwood on the weekend of the Sturges rally, I can tell you with absolute certainty that this didn't hold a candle to that gathering. 

There are tales to be told from our time in Myrtle Beach, but I will save those for another day. For now, I will just catch up on the journey. On Sunday we drove about six hours to Norfolk Virginia, and stopped just short of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. And for those who don't know, that is exactly what it is - a bridge, then a tunnel, then a bridge again, then a tunnel, then a bridge again - and in the middle when you think you're back on land again, you are on some man-made islands.

A remarkable achievement - and it was even more remarkable in that there wasn't all that much traffic on a late May Monday and we never had to slow down or sit in a traffic jam. 

As we neared the state line we pulled into one of the numerous stands selling Virginia hams, bacon and sausage, and bough ham, bacon and sausage. Hey - if they're selling, I'm buying.  Besides, staying for the umpteenth time with our dear friends Walt and Terry, it seemed like bringing coals to Newcastle to show up with a bottle or two of wine, so it was a special pleasure to be able to arrive and say, "Walter, we have brought you a ham and sausages!"

You may notice that we didn't tell him about the bacon. Let's just say, we have our own intentions with that purchase, and they have something to do with the jar of pickled okra we bought at the Charleston marlket.

1 comment:

Judy Tiziani said...

I am so glad that there are others who describe their trips by the food they eat and buy! so it's not just us......