April 20-26, 2017: Charleston, SC

We were planning to make Charleston a relatively short stop, but predicted bad weather forced us to stay put.  Gee, rats! We ended up staying a week at the Charleston City Marina on the Megadock.  This is the closest thing to a vacation that we’ve gotten in a long, long time, and we took advantage of it.  After this, it’s back to Oriental for a month-long haul and all of the associated work.

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Here we are, nestled under Athena’s massive bowsprit.

But as always, before play: work.  We refueled, cleaned and recharged the composting head, and gave the boat a detailed wash down, which she richly deserved.  The Captain ordered and installed some cockpit mounts for the iPad and for the Garmin InReach.  I did many loads of laundry over several nights, which was made easier by the close proximity of the marina laundry room.

We hear over and over here that you don’t tour Charleston, you eat Charleston.  Anyone who’s known us for five minutes knows that we are all about a good meal, so we’ve been in heaven.  We started our “vacation” by eating breakfast at our favorite breakfast joint, Hominy Grill.  The Captain always has the Charleston Nasty Biscuit, which he describes thus:  a perfectly battered and fried chicken breast served on a fluffy Southern biscuit and drenched in delectable white sausage gravy, topped with a sprinkling of white cheddar cheese.  He says, “It is true perfection.” I get the omelette and home fries, both of which are fresh and wonderful.

Over the next few days, we had a terrific lunch at A1 Super China Buffet (Chinese place, check!), which is over in the West Marine shopping center.  We walked along the West Ashley Greenway through town, which was a great respite from the traffic and heat.

We then embarked on a two-night barbeque spree.  While I am a vegetarian, the Captain is a meatatarian, and he does love him some barbeque.  First we went to Rodney Scott’s, which specializes in whole hog barbeque.  They serve up some mean sides, including potato salad, macaroni and cheese, and awesome hush puppies.  But what sealed the deal was the banana pudding.  Oh my god, the banana pudding.  We both gave Rodney Scott’s two thumbs up.

The next night was Lewis Barbeque, which specializes in Texas beef barbeque as well as pulled pork and a homemade sausage called—I kid you not—“hot guts.”  Sounds gross but the Captain said it was awesome.  Lewis was clearly insanely popular and was very crowded on a Tuesday of all nights.

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This is a place that takes beef very, very seriously.

The Captain believes that brisket paves the path to enlightenment, and three quarters of a pound of Lewis brisket did nothing to dissuade him.  I give the green chili corn pudding, giant scoop of guacamole and chips, and soft sopapillas enthusiastic kudos.

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Brisket, hot guts, onions, pickled onions, pickles, white bread, and sauce served on a piece of paper.  What more could a man want?

At this point we had to stop the meal madness, mainly because it was time to leave.  We did manage to walk down King Street and Meeting Street to see the many antique and fashion shops and to visit the Charleston Maritime Center.  We were hoping to visit Fort Sumter, but bad weather nixed that for this trip.

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It wasn’t ALL food.  Just mostly.

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Our plan is to leave tomorrow for a two-day offshore passage to Oriental, NC.  It should be an adventure as we’ve only done overnight offshore passages to this point.  Once we get back to Oriental, it’s time to do some work on Kestrel to spruce her up.

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