Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Charmed by Charleston

November 13-19, Charleston, SC
Everyone seems to love the historic charm and antebellum opulence of Charleston. For us it was even better because Marty and Barb shared the experience with us.

Marty and Barb belong to a Civil War Roundtable in the Twin Cities, and though he might protest the description, Marty is a Civil War expert. It was fun to be with him on his first visit to Fort Sumter, the place where the first shots of the war were fired. He told us some intriguing behind-the-scenes stories.

We walked for miles along the waterfront and through the historic district, past pre–Revolutionary War houses and beautifully preserved mansions in a complementary blending of architectural styles. These gracious old homes have withstood wars, sieges, hurricanes, and an earthquake, and proudly line the streets with an air of elegance and permanence. We peeked between the bars of wrought iron gates to admire perfectly manicured formal gardens—and camellias blooming in November.

Steeples dominated the city skyline, and on Sunday we attended St. Michael’s Episcopal Church, one of the earliest established churches in Charleston. From the moment we approached the door until we left after coffee hour, we were welcomed with open arms. The bell-ringing was magnificent, the music glorious, the message powerful; it was a highlight of our stay in Charleston.

We not only walked our way through town, we also ate our way through: Shrimp and grits, fried okra, she-crab soup, and a fabulous meal at FIG. Thanks, Mary and Barb, for the fun and memorable weekend!

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