Saturday, April 19, 2003

Gone to Carolina Archive: Charleston

Twins 9-7 Braves 9-8
We went to Charleston Thursday night and came home Friday night. What a great place! I could spend a week there, quite easily.
I would not stay at the Best Western there again, though. Our rooms were $90 per night and the rooms are in bad need of overhauling. They were very clean, though, so that was good.
We started out the day with breakfast at the hotel. They have these waffle irons that stay hot all through the breakfast period. The attendant fills cups with just the right amount of batter and you simply pour the batter into the iron you want and cook your waffle. I don't really eat waffles too much myself, but the guys enjoyed cooking these massive waffles and eating them. While we ate, we figured out where to go.
Tony had said if you have only one day to spend in Charleston, go to the Market. Mary R. had suggested the Exchange. So we drove to the Battery and looked at all the memorials for submariners and soldiers from the Revolutionary War and the Civil War. They also had memorials for Hurricane Hugo.
A word about the Civil War: In Charleston, the sites we saw that day all called it "The War Between The States". This pleased me. I'd been hearing it called "The War of Northern Aggression".
After walking around the Battery, we went to the Exchange. This is part of the original fortress that was built around the city to protect it from Indians, Pirates, Spanish and wild animals. They also had a room where the South Carolinians got together to ratify the Declaration of Independence. And this was where the British held prisoners during the Revolutionary War, after they had taken the city.
We had lunch at Diana's Restaurant. I had read about it in which is a website dedicated to finding the the most memorable eateries along the highways and backroads of America. I heard about this website on The Splendid Table, which regularly features reviews by Jane and Michael Stern.
At Diana's, Mom and I shared a cup of crab and corn soup, a huge plate of shrimp etoufee with fried green tomatoes and grits, and a giant piece of coconut cake. Who cares what all the guys ate?
After lunch we went to the Old Market and walked around. This is a series of old buildings, said to be where slaves were sold, that have been preserved and now house lots of little shops and booths.
It's only about a 3 hour drive to Charleston, if you don't drive over the supper hour and have to stop and eat and the stop for bathroom breaks, etc.
Today is Easter Saturday and I had a coffee at my house. Tony, Peggy Mc, Miss Rachel, Cassie S and Margaret W all came and we had cinnamon rolls and fruit salad. I had mentioned a Koffee Klatch to Tony. He hadn't heard that phrase before. I explained that it's just a gathering where you drink coffee and chat. I told him I'd do it again and make Kolaches sometime, just so he could say he went to a Koffee and Kolache Klatch!
Mensa Boy and Dad ditched and did not attend the coffee. We sent them grocery shopping for tomorrow's ingredients. They did a great job and had the patience to keep looking for a ham that was NOT spiral sliced. What is it with this? It seems so hard to find an unsliced ham. Is that a Carolina thing, or is it same all over? Dad ended up pay $22 for a ham and could have gotten one the same size, spiral sliced, for about $8. But most of those were honey-baked, and that doesn't make the greatest scalloped potatoes and ham later in the week.
Tomorrow is Mom and Dad's last day with us. As usual, everyone is talking big about going to the Sunrise Service. Usually that ends up not happening, as I am the only one that generally is up in time. But, with the weather here so mild, there might be more motivation. After that, there is breakfast at the church and then Sunday School and the regular service.
We hope to eat the ham early in the afternoon so there will still be enough Sunday left to have ham sandwiches later. One has to plan these things...
Happy Easter!

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