Friday, June 3, 2016

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

 This year, during the last week of April, Dave and I spent a week visiting Myrtle Beach.  It was the first time either of us had ever been to Myrtle Beach.  It was a great time of year to go, (the crowds hadn't flocked to the area yet, and the weather was perfect).  It was a nice relaxing way to see the area.
We spent the first day visiting Fort Sumter National Park, (this is where the first shot that started the Civil War was fired).  The museum was very interesting, (it sits right on the ocean front with a fantastic view of what little remains of the original fort).  We also made our way over to the annual "Blessing of the Fleet and Seafood Festival".  This was the start of the summer shrimp season, and the fisherman's boats are all blessed for a bountiful harvest.  There were many vendor tents with variety of foods, (which we had to indulge in), and crafts of all kinds in which to purchase.
Just down the road from our condo, Dave and I found a produce stand that we got some of our fresh dinner supplies from - perhaps you may recognize the name?  Dave asked me when I had time to not only garden at home, but also run a stand in South Carolina?  He asked the owner, if we were entitled to a discount, since my name was Barbara, but sadly the owner, only gave us a hearty chuckle.
 One of Dave's favorite activities during the week, was a helicopter ride over the area.  We flew over the ocean and beach front.  It gave a whole new perspective of things from the air.  Dave now wants to do a helicopter ride when we go to Maui this fall.
We did a little side trip to Charleston, and spent a couple of hours downtown at the flea market.  I found the mule pulled wagon tourist attractions interesting.  There wasn't an empty seat on any of the wagons.  It was such a hot day, (mid 80's).  The buildings were packed with people, but everyone kept moving along nicely, no one seems to mind the heat.  There was food vendors with just about anything you could think of, and crafts of every kind.  Some of the most beautiful pieces of art and jewelry.
 The Carolina area is particularly know for "sweet grass weaving".  I sort of got in trouble for taking a photo, (but I was pretty quick).  Each artist has their own handwoven unique design.  And as you are driving along the roads, you will see a stand set up with sweet grass weaving for sale.  Very small pieces will sell for $25 - $100.  And larger pieces will sell for up to $10,000.  It is a technique that dates back to the slavery days, brought over from Africa, and passed down through the generations.  The work is beautiful
And of course everywhere you go there are seafood buffets galore.  I think Dave finally got his fill of shrimp, crabs, and mussels.  We had seafood every day during our vacation.  And every place you go, they sit a basket of hush puppies on the table.  Most of the dishes are prepared using a method called "calabash", which is a fried method, (no breading is used).  It's actually very good.

We certainly had a good time.  Southern hospitality was wonderful to us.

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