Thursday, March 1, 2012
Stop number one on this trip was Charleston, SC where things are really starting to feel southern down here with huge live oaks draped with spanish moss lining country roads. Bench swings for spending lazy, hot afternoons line the palmetto-filled parks. We wandered the streets lined with opulent mansions built by rich plantation owners in the 1800's, spared by General Sherman in the Civil War thanks to an influential political friend who lived in Charlston. In our wanderings, we stumbled across the Powder Magazine Museum, the oldest surviving public building, where the nice man who worked there gave us a brief history of Charleston and some hard time in the stocks. Downtown is situated next to a channel of water that abruptly rises to shallow water causing fish to be swept to the surface when the tide comes in, supplying the bottle-nose dolphins an all-they-can-eat buffet. We spent two evenings watching them as they feasted, including mothers teaching their babies how to hunt. Across the channel from downtown the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Yorktown found its final resting place after sevice in WWII and Korea and has been turned into a museum. We spent an afternoon looking at fighters and climbing through the bowels of machinery, while learning the history of the ship. Charlston Harbor is home to Fort Sumter where the Civil War began. Sadly, due to excessive amounts of time spent in the U.S.S. Yorktown and an itch to get further south, we did not make it out to Sumter this trip.
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