Charleston And Myrtle Beach

Posted: Thursday, June 24, 2010 at 5:22 am
By: Doug Lund
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Okay, when someone more knowledgeable than you about the South says, “June, July and August are not most ideal months to be visiting Dixie,” they speak the truth.

It was already 85 degrees at 8:30 Wednesday morning when we left the motel for our city tour of Charleston, South Carolina. I wised-up this time, though; booking our ride with Grey Line whose busses are air conditioned. 

charleston battery

 We had another very informed driver/narrator but she, like all native Charlestonians, still have a hard time accepting the fact that the South lost the Civil War. In fact, they insist on calling that conflict “The war between the states” or..in some extreme cases, “The war of Northern aggression.” Our lady driver bristled a bit when I asked her about it. “The term Civil War is a misnomer,” she explained. The South did not instigate a rebellion. Thirteen southern states in 1860-61 simply chose to secede from the Union and go their own way, like the thirteen colonies did when they seceded from Britain.” “Uhhh, okay..I didn’t mean to p**s you off,” I said.  “Oh, no..I enjoy setting the record straight,’ she replied. You can take the Rebel out of the fight but you can’t take the fight out of the Rebel.

After our hour and a half ride around town (which we all agreed wasn’t as impressive as Savannah) we climbed aboard a big boat for a tour of the Charleston Harbor that included close encounters with the beautiful new Cooper River bridge

Savannah also has a diamond design bridge like this. Very attractive!

Savannah also has a diamond design bridge like this. Very attractive!

 and, of course, the place where the Civil wa…ooops, war between the states, began: Fort Sumter.

charleston sumter

We had hoped to visit more of historic Charleston like the old market and a few churches but it was just too hot to be out walkin’ around so we departed for Myrtle Beach and the Atlantic Ocean. It’s only about a hundred miles but heavy traffic and lots of lights kept our pace slow which gave us plenty of time to find a hotel through our discount room rate coupon books which we picked up at the welcome center . Something with an ocean view would be nice. But each place we called was either full..too expensive or wouldn’t honor our coupons.

As we got closer to Myrtle Beach we began to realize that we should have done a lot more research. This is not the quaint community of 30 thousand people with lots of golf courses we had pictured.  Well, it is..but it’s also one big amusement park with giant water parks, roller coasters and go-cart tracks that attract waves of sun and fun seeking tourists in big SUV’s packed with kids.

If you like big crowds and billions of people, Myrtle Beach is the place for you!

If you like big crowds and billions of people, Myrtle Beach is the place for you!

The traffic might be compared to Manhattan during rush hour. We finally found a place to stay off the beaten path and, after a delicious dinner at a fantastic seafood restaurant last night, we decided to leave this congested corner of the Carolinas and head for Charlotte early to check out the new NASCAR museum and then point Big Red toward home.

I forgot to get Linda a card for our 26th anniversary..so I’m guessing it’s going to be cool enough in the car that I might not need to run the air conditioning.

Happy Anniversary, honey!

11 Comments

  1. fsl says:

    Hey Doug, glad you’re getting a tour of the south. Oh yes the ‘war’ is still not over for them. Since our daughter lives in TN, we’ve gotten their versions as well. In fact there are still people who mourn over their deceased relatives who died (whom they’ve never met of course), ! They weren’t very trustful of us Yankees.
    We explained that our kin weren’t even in the USA YET when the Civil War was in progress ! We were still immigrating. They couldn’t quite get a handle on that.
    Oh well, enjoy the sights ! I enjoy traveling through your blog ! fsl.

  2. GMR says:

    Doug,
    Your destination of choice should have been Hilton Head.

  3. Donn says:

    As long as your checking out the NASCAR museum, go see a couple race shops while your in the area. It is pretty amazing to see them build the cars, with the shops so clean, you could eat off the floor. Have fun.

  4. Charlie Smith says:

    Now what if Arizona decides to secede?

  5. grouse says:

    Everyone wants to know what swimsuit you decided to wear to the beach? The red Speedo, or the blue Brazilian thong? Whichever you chose, I’m sure it was a scene stealer. I’ll be looking for photos on You Tube.
    After the NASCAR trip, don’t forget to make car noises and pretend to shift gears for hours on end on the way home. Whatever you do, don’t keep turning left.

  6. Tom says:

    For a beautiful,uncrowded and fun beach with surf on your next trip to the SE Atlantic shore Doug and crew, I recommend Tybee Island which is about 20 miles east of Savannah. Decent, relatively reasonably priced hotels and restuarants are 1 block from the beach. Sorry I did not share this information when you first mentioned your trip. And…for far distant future consideration.. there is an elder care facility on the beach at the north end of the island. The only down side…no golf course on the island. Go Big Red!

  7. grouse says:

    You’re probably all pretty well fed up with each others company by now, so here’s a point to ponder with each passing mile. Imagine fighting the Civil War ( or whatever the cutie on the tour called it) in WOOL uniforms and long WOOL underwear. You thought it was hot in your swim trunks! Boxers and Briefs didn’t exist. No wonder everybody was irritable and a teensy bit testy.

  8. Doug Lund says:

    I did think about those soldiers..both north and south..who were forced to endure these extreme weather conditions and wondered how they were able to march into battle while exhausted from the heat and croaking from thirst.
    The Nascar hall of fame was worth the effort to get there. I managed to drive a simulated race without a major mishap. Thought people were going to applaud my expertise until my lap speed was revealed to be about a hundred miles an hour short of the record.
    Oh well, we enjoyed dinner this evening at a place called Carolina Bar B Que in Statesvlle, NC. Going to push big red full force toward home tomorrow.

  9. Squibby says:

    How could the bus driver see with her head crammed so far up her butt?

  10. LeAnn Mears says:

    HAPPY ANNIVERSARY TO BOTH OF YOU!!!!!!!
    AS I WRITE THIS THE TEMP. IS 90 AND THE HEAT INDEX IS 119 ACCORDING TO KELO WEB SITE. THIS KIND OF WETHER MAKES ME WANT TO STAY INSIDE, NOT BEING ON VACATION THINKING I’M HAVING A GOOD TIME, CAUSE IT AIN’T GONNA HAPPEN. DOUG, PEOPLE THAT ARE RETIRED TAKE THESE KIND OF VACATION IN ………..SAY FEBRUARY????
    AND THE POOR SOLDIERS THAT HAD TO WEAR WOOL UNIFORMS, HOW HORRIBLE. BUT DON’T FORGET THE WOMEN OF THAT ERA WHO HAD NO RELIEF FROM THE HEAT AND WENT THRU MENIPAUSE. NO WONDER THERE WERE SO MANY WOMEN THAT COMMITED SUISIDE BY DROWNING THEMSELVES IN HORSE TANKS. IF I WOUNLD BE ON THIS VACATION I WOULD HAVE BEEN LOOKING FOR A HORSE TANK.
    WELCOME BACK!!!!!!!!!

  11. Patches says:

    Bet you’ve figured out that March, April, May, October or November are the best times to visit the South. Was going to try to forewarn you about this but was away from the computer for awhile. But you had your plans made anyway…glad you got your air conditioner fixed, it would have been unbearable by todays standards of what we expect for comfort.
    I am originally from SD but lived in SC for 22 years (a small town by Columbia); my husband always said “we retired in reverse” and am acclamated back to this climate now.
    You’re always talking about wanting to lose weight, bet you sweated some weight off in the land where all you have to do is step onto the porch to start sweating. We’re getting a dose of that here in Keloland lately but nothing like the heat and humidity are there.

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