It is a rainy, gloomy day on St. Simons. B. J. and I are warm and cozy in our island cottage and I’m writing while she concocts some “rainy day” soup.
Charleston, South Carolina figures prominently in my family history. The Boyd family has roots there dating to colonial times. I had ancestors living there during the great Charleston Earthquake of 1886, my brother is buried there and I still have family scattered around Charleston that we visit from time to time. Any serious genealogical research of my family history eventually leads to the Charleston archives. B. J. and I have spent much time there across the years and know the place almost like the backs of our hands. Charleston is a fun town. We have cruised the waterways in my brother’s boat and in ferries and picnicked at Fort Sumter. Cousins Patty and Paul Runey have boats to do that now when opportunity arises.
B. J. and I were on our way to Charleston again for some events we had never experienced in Charleston: see the old year out and the New Year in and be part of a big wedding on New Year’s Day. Big Red wanted to visit Charleston so we left Little Blue snorting and pouting.
Big Red, feeling his super premium oats, pranced onto I-95, put his head into the wind and headed north in a gallop. For New Year’s Eve, the traffic was moderate but it showed promise of picking up later in the day. Big Red was feeling good. He felt like he was King of Road. The Corvettes annoyed him some. He wanted to take them on. I was constantly slowing him down.
It was lunchtime on the road. B. J. had made us some sandwiches and snacks. We often eat in the car when we are traveling; it conserves time and it’s economical too. Just before crossing the Savannah River B. J. broke out the eats and we had lunch at 70mph on I-95. Now that’s fast food.
At Pocotaligo, SC, (Pocotaligo also figures into our family history) we accessed US 17 toward Charleston and reined Big Red into the foreboding South Carolina Lowcountry. The Lowcountry (sometimes spelled Low Country) is a geographic and cultural region located along South Carolina’s coast. The region includes the South Carolina Sea Islands, which were once a location known for its agricultural wealth. The Lowcountry today is internationally renowned for its historic cities and communities and its natural beauty. Its unique cultural heritage has attracted millions of visitors and thousands of new residents. Across the years, B. J. and I have spent many hours exploring the antebellum homes and plantations in the Lowcountry. However, traveling US 17 through the swampy Lowcountry gives one an eerie feeling especially at night if it is raining. Big Red just bared his teeth, chomped his bits and took the Lowcountry in stride.
In time, I bridled Big Red into the stable at our comfortable quarters for the weekend. We were smack dab on the marsh about a mile from the Intracoastal Waterway. An adorable little backyard picnic area, including a swimming pool, beside the water with steaks on the grill would be a delightful place to welcome the New Year. It was cool and cloudy in Charleston and no one would be in the swimming pool at midnight.
Our amiable and cute receptionist handed us our keys and we unloaded Big Red’s saddle bag and piled our traveling rags on the bed. Then we headed on over to Tootsie’s (my-sister-in-law) place on the waterway about a mile away.
We have many fond memories of the Boyd home place on the Intracoastal Waterway in Charleston.
We were greeted by mushy hugs and kisses. We visited with our fun family for a few minutes. The family was in a tizzy getting ready for the big wedding on New Year’s Day. So, we exited and returned to our weekend residence. B. J. wanted to do a little shopping and we had some time on our hands.
I had cooked a pot of black-eyed peas and hog jowl before we left home on St. Simons. B. J. carried a container of it to have on New Year’s Day but we had no collard greens. We had to head up to the Piggly Wiggly to collect some collard greens and fixings for New Year’s Eve. A lively New Year’s weekend in Charleston was shaping up. It appeared that sleep was going to be scarce. - Next Week: a fantastic wedding on an old southern plantation.