Tues. May 23, 2017:
Beaufort, SC to Savannah, GA
The thunder had been so loud in the night that it actually roused me from my sleep- resulting in me sitting up in bed and screaming. We skipped the hotel breakfast and went to Chick-Fil-A instead. I was way too early in the morning for a greasy sandwich so I opted for chicken nuggets instead. They were amazing, they not only looked like they were made with actual chicken- but also tasted like it! There was a Dunkin Donuts two doors down but it was raining so we drove over. It was in the direction we were headed anyways. The donut selection was dismal so I stuck with just coffee and my beloved coconut flavour.
We drove to Hilton Head Island to see the beach. A car had driven off the highway and into the swamp. We were surprised how far into the swamplands they had made it. Luckily no one was hurt just confused. The island was really more like a series of resorts and golf courses. I have never seen such a concentration of golf greens, they really should rename the island to Golf Head Island. Either there was no public access or we couldn’t find it. We parked at a resort and walked down. On the way to the beach, literally steps away, people were hanging out by the hotel pool. I was bewildered, the beach and the ocean were right there! Chlorine is the worst! The ocean was surprisingly warm. I took off my crappy sandals and waded in up to my knees. The water felt so nice- until my legs dried. Then they were unbearably itchy. No problem, I waded back in- ah sweet relief. Until they dried again. It was a vicious cycle and I had no idea how to get out. On the way back to the car we saw a guy wearing a Blue Jays hat but he was walking in the same direction as us and we couldn’t catch up to him to give him a customary nod.
Up next we tried to drive to another beach. It was within a resort park on the island, Sea Pines. We had to pay a toll to get in and what for? They didn’t even have public parking! How are we supposed to enjoy the beach? What did that toll pay for? All we saw were a bunch of trees and lots of houses. Hilton Head Island was a disappointment.
On the way there we had passed an outlet mall and now that we had extra time from our failed beach attempt, I was ready to shop. Except as soon as we pulled in, the sky tore open and a torrential downpour came down. Not great for an outdoor parkade. I ended up having to run from store to store. It was a successful trip, I ended up with almost exactly the same PUMA shoes to replace my old ones and a dress for Camilla and some purple shorts from the GAP for cheap. I rounded out the trip at Auntie Anne’s for pretzels. I was about to get the hot-dog wrapped in a pretzel but then I remembered that we were going to Sonic later. I thought better of it and ordered the sweet almond pretzel instead. I had a bite of Brent’s garlic parmesan pretzel but it just wasn’t as good. The sweet almond pretzel was just so damn good and made all the better because it was warm.
Driving to Savannah, Georgia was confusing because some buildings had Savannah in the name but it was not clear that we were in Georgia, we were unsure if we had crossed over yet. Eventually we saw a giant bridge- that HAD to be the crossing into Georgia, we were so close to state #34!!! Down by the river, the first sights of Georgia were not pretty, it was just industrial ugly buildings.
That soon changed once we were in the town of Savannah. Our hotel, The Gastonian, was a beautiful old house. And at 5pm there was going to be complimentary hor d’oeurves and wine and then at 8pm dessert! I was really digging the southern hospitality. By the bedside table in our room there was a welcome card and chocolates. There was also a card to pre-order breakfast for the next morning. I was in love with this place.
We went for a walk “downtown”, despite the rain warning. Thankfully it did not rain while we were out. The squirrels in the park were so slim, it was almost as if the humans had not been feeding them. The park was very pretty with lots of large trees and a giant fountain in the middle that for some reason, everyone within the vicinity needed a picture of. There was a girl taking a picture of a historical plaque and her friends asked why she would not just read it then and there rather than taking a picture and she said she wanted to read it later- prompting Brent to loudly tell me he was going to read the plaque now. The ladies all giggled.
There were lots of big beautiful houses in the town and every few blocks there was a nice small square with greenery and benches and the odd gazebo here and there. It was a well planned out town centre. We walked by the Savannah College of Art & Design- I secretly booed them for not being as good as OCAD.
We did not pass any stores where we could pick up some snacks and our car was parked in an awkward spot, making it tough to head back out to Sonic. Thankfully our hotel would be offering hor d’oeurves soon, just enough time so sneak in a quick shower. I could not for the life of me get the hot water to work. I tried turning every tap all the way- and still nothing. I was ready to resort to taking a bath in the separate hot tub instead when on a whim I mentioned to Brent my inability to get hot water. He turned the shower knob and sure enough- hot water. I contend it had something, for some reason, to do with my turning the tub knobs. It had to be.
The hor d’oeurves selection was awesome just a ton of meats and cheeses and crackers. They had both red and white wine. I had half a glass of white wine while we ate and then half another glass as we walked around the house and looked at the open rooms. It had started raining outside so we stayed for a second round- I had yet to try the red wine and they brought out another tray of deli meats. Our nice relaxing afternoon was soon interrupted by a creepy old couple who were touching each other and reminiscing about getting drunk on tequila. It was crazy how bad it was raining. We actually had to borrow a hotel umbrella to get back to our room, which normally is just a short walk outside and in through a side entrance. We would have been soaked without an umbrella. We even had to turn back to get a second one, resulting in our being laughed at by the other people in the hotel. There were mini streams forming in the street, I stuck my toe in to measure and it was 1-2 inches maybe. The weather forecast warnings of flash flooding suddenly seemed more real. For a second the rain had let up and out of nowhere we saw our neighbour run to his car to get something. No sooner were we in our room, it stopped raining.
We started watching Olive Kitteridge but had not looked at the time. We did not have enough time to finish the episode, we had dinner reservations at Elizabeth on 37th which was a 20 minute walk. It had started raining again when we went out, thankfully it was a lot lighter. Even still we each took an umbrella.
We skipped on splitting an appetizer because we had to leave room for dessert- it was what they were known for. The first drink I ordered had Georgia peach whisky with orange-infused sweet tea vodka. I hadn’t had that much wine back at the hotel so I had a second. How could I resist rosé wine with local peach cider- it wasn’t as good as the first drink. As we sat there waiting for our food we snacked on fresh bread. On a whim I decided to try the marmalade. It was delicious! Who knew marmalade could be good? Before our mains arrived we were served a salad of lettuce and feta cheese and watermelon. It was weirdly good. For my main I had the Savannah red rice with sausages, Georgia shrimps, fish and okra- all tossed in delicious spiciness. The portion size was far too large and I could not finish it. I had a bite of Brent’s almond-crusted fish, my dish won by far. For dessert I had the Savannah cream cake. It was good but I was not impressed, it was too dense. Brent’s blueberry cobbler which was more of a cobbler crumb atop baked blueberries and blackberries (it lacked the base) was by far better.
On the walk back there was thunder and lightning. We decided to go back via the next street over to get a different view. We came across a guy who needed help getting up to his front porch. I carried his bag of beer to the front door and apparently that was all he wanted. Meanwhile his yappy little dog was not at all impressed with Brent’s drunken attempts to pet him or even go near him. I was way too full for the late evening dessert spread at the hotel.