Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Georgetown Festivities

We don't usually plan much on Gypsies in terms of where we are going to be at any given point in time because usually we don't know what time it is, let alone what day of the week - when you aren't tied down to a routine of work, it just doesn't seem to matter much if it's a week day or a weekend (except that there are more yahoos out on the water on the weekends!) But we knew we wanted to be someplace really cool for the Fourth of July so we made reservations at a marina in Georgetown, SC and arrived on the 3rd to get our bearings!

That afternoon as you've already read in our blog we found the Buzz's Roost bar (which will play prominently in our stay later...) and scoped out a little of the main drag in what is a very quaint little town. The day of the Fourth we had intended to explore, but found ourselves lazing the day away on Gypsies - OK we worked the first part of the day - Doug got some work done down in the engine room and I found myself in a baking mode (after all we were headed over to September Song for 4th of July dinner and the fireworks extravaganza so I couldn't just bring cheese and crackers!) We had a great afternoon of snuggling with the boat kitties (even though it was about 95 degrees - we were at a dock so we put on the A/C for them!!) and just generally chillin'! Soon enough it was time to head over to SS and we sat out on the front deck to enjoy pineapple and water chestnuts wrapped in bacon along with several adult beverages.
Cocktails on the Front Deck of September Song
Bob, aka the grillmaster, was soon cooking up some amazing wild salmon for dinner under the direction of the chef of the evening, Admiral Stephanie - suffice it to say, dinner was unbelievable!
The Grillmaster on September Song
It's truly amazing that we all don't weigh 300 pounds with the way we eat - guess it's because we get lots of exercise too! After our wonderful dinner, we headed back out to the bow to watch the fireworks display and munch on coconut crisp cookies - life is definitely good! Hope everyone had a fun and safe 4th!
Fireworks in Georgetown

The next day we had set aside for exploring so in the morning we dug out our bikes and set off to see the town - not just the main drag, but the historic area as well. I absolutely love wandering around a town that has historic significance, especially when the town has taken the time to erect plaques giving you a sense of its history and what is unique. Georgetown is the 3rd oldest town in South Carolina founded in 1729 by Elisha Screven and has an entire historic district with many homes and churches of special importance - it also has a wonderfully constructed Harborwalk which runs (you guessed it) along the harbor. We started out along the Harborwalk with its fountains
The Fountain on Harborwalk
and museums,
The Rice Museum
and then rode through town and proceeded to bike down almost every residential street in the entire historic district. While I love to walk through a new town, you can see so much more of a town by bike - and as long as you ride slow and stop often along the way, you don't have to miss the little things that make the town special (I think I drove Doug a little batty stopping to take pictures at every cool house and to read every historic sign!!) Georgetown's homes and churches are a charming mixture of architectural styles which for me makes it very interesting - Georgetown is truly the first time that I have started to see real New England type features like white picket fences, wrap around front porches and cape style homes! As we've come up the coast, it has been fascinating to see how the architecture has changed from the heavily spanish influence in Florida (a la St Augustine and once you get out of the strip mall chic of central and southern east coast FL), to the gothic, revival, victorian influences in Savannah with most houses having decorative ironwork balconies, stairways or other decoration, to Charleston where many homes have a front door that leads not into the home but to a side porch and where the houses are very thin but long front to back with usually at least 2 or 3 stories of porches and hidden gardens. Georgetown is like a melting pot - it has a little of all of those styles - but it also has some very traditional New England style houses as well and all the homes are charmingly landscaped with wonderful flowering trees and bushes, lattice work brick fences and fountains!! It is both fascinating and charming - with streets like King, Queen, Duke and Prince Street, how could it be anything but??? Unlike many of the towns we have visited here in the south, military history is not predominant - in fact Georgetown made it through the Civil War largely unscathed although there is a memorial in one of the little cemeteries to its Confederate war dead complete with newly placed confederate flags.
Civil War Monument
Georgetown even boasts a state champion oak tree that has been around for over 570 years and is enormous (over 25 feet in circumference and over 120 feet tall!!!) - strategically placed between two beautiful southern homes on Prince Street, its majesty towers over both roofs!!
A 570 Year Old Tree
Many Homes had Large Front Porches Complete with Rockers
Hidden Garden with Fountains
Lattice Brick Walls and Gorgeous Landscaping
New England Farmhouse Style Home
Charleston-like Porches and Savannah-like Wrought Iron Fence
Two Sided Entry Stairs Like in Savannah
New England Style Dormers
New England Style White Picket Fences

The waterfront is likewise a mesh of old and new - the Harborwalk spans the area between the towering and often odiferous paper mill at one end of the river, which is one of the largest employers in the county of Georgetown (International Steel being the other), and the shrimp boat fleet at the other!! In between is a boardwalk that runs along a charming collection of little shops and funky bars and restaurants - quirky signs like the one telling visitors not to feed the alligators adorn the walk.
Now Do They Really Need to Tell People This!!!
Shrimpboats Docked Near Harborwalk

After biking from one end of the town to the other and soaking up all that culture, we were ready for some serious fun! Having remembered that Buzz's Roost had a band Sunday afternoon, we quickly found our way there - meeting up with Bob along the way who was biking along the Harborwalk! What fun we had in store for us - as we walked in to the bar, a musician Bil Krauss was playing guitar and immediately noticed Doug's Hog's Breath tee shirt - a serious bond was sealed as he plays down in Key West frequently at Irish Kevin's (one of our favored bars) and was also sporting a ponytail (although not quite as long as Doug's but heck mine isn't as long as Doug's!!!) Over buckets of cold beer reminiscent of the Schooner Wharf Bar in Key West (and an occasional appetizer or two) we (joined by Stephanie and Bob) proceeded to while away the afternoon, being completely entertained not only by Bil's amazing musical talent but by his wit and humor!! Sometimes we just stumble into a really good time - I know that's hard to believe but it's true!! We can't wait to see Bil again - rumor has it he is playing up in Myrtle Beach which we are headed to shortly but if not there, down in Key West next winter where he is playing at Irish Kevin's from December through April - check out his website for some great music and location of his gigs www.bilkrauss.com!! Thanks Bil for a great afternoon - look forward to seeing you again soon!!!!
Bil Krauss at Buzz's Roost in Georgetown
Bil Krauss and the Gang

Yesterday morning we left Georgetown and headed for the Waccamaw River which is an amazingly beautiful river with wild cypress trees lining the banks - often the trees are growing several feet out into the water which makes for a really weird sight! We didn't have far to go to reach our anchorage in Thoroughfare Creek, a wonderfully protected creek that winds its way back through the marsh and woods - we were glad for that protection last night as the thunderstorms ripped through! Doug and I spent a quiet afternoon reading on the boat soaking in some sun that was an unexpected bonus as the weather had been calling for mostly t'storms - we'll take the sun whenever we can get it!! We watched a virtual parade of little boats buzz by us in search of one of the little "beaches" along the river - OK they look a little better than the last one we were on, but they still are mostly mud and the water's still brown!! But, today we plan on heading out shortly in Hobos (our dinghy) to go explore the numerous little creeks and tributaries that shoot off from our creek and the Waccamaw. SS has already been out exploring and radioed us that it's gorgeous!!! Doug is once again in the engine room - seems like the work on a boat never ends!!! The reward for all that hard work, is being able to live this life and find fantastic little towns like Georgetown and remote, wild anchorages like the one we are in here in Thoroughfare Creek - and have the time to explore them all!!!!!

Click here to see a Google map of our anchorage in Thoroughfare Creek

No comments:

Post a Comment