As noted previously, we arrived in Charleston just after noon on Saturday, May 23. We chose to put Beatitude in the Charleston Harbor Marina, which is actually in Mt. Pleasant, just across the harbor from the downtown area. It was there or the City Marina. We decided on this one because it is a little bit less expensive and comes with the amenities of a resort, including pool, jacuzzi, a free trolley back and forth from the historic district every two hours and water taxi availability.
We relaxed for the afternoon before taking the 6 o’clock trolley into town. On this holiday weekend, both the harbor and the city were crazy crowded. People were everywhere. We ambled along Market Street and then made a right on King Street, covering the 3 1/2 blocks from our drop off point to our evening destination. Whenever we enter a new place, I immediately research what’s available in town: restaurants, music, arts, etc. Charleston is my kind of town! I believe I could settle here one day and be very happy. I discovered that there were two jazz clubs in town, so we set out for one of them on our first night here, The Mezz, which is located on the upper floor of a restaurant on King Street called Sermet’s. The food was scrumptious and the atmosphere elegant, yet relaxed. Live jazz takes place here five nights a week. This night featured the swing band of Joe Clark. The music was great. Cindy and I had a great time! Thoroughly tired, we took the 10:15 trolley back to the marina when it was all over.
Residing in this charming, southern coastal city are our dear friends, Justin and Shera Argabright. Their daughter Megan also lives here. They were kind enough to come pick us up on Sunday morning to take us to church – not to their church, but to St. Andrews Parish Church, the oldest church in South Carolina. We would not have been able to attend this particular church if not for them, because we’d need a car to get there. The church building dates to 1706 and has been recently renovated and restored by the present congregation, an Anglican church which separated from the Episcopal Church a year or two ago. In fact, the congregation had a mortgage burning just prior to service celebrating the fact that they are now debt free and have paid for all of the restoration. Besides the blessing of being in this historic building which has been a place of worship for over two centuries, I thought the service itself was wonderful.
After church, we met their daughter, Megan, and Justin’s mother at Jim and Nick’s Barbecue for a tasty lunch. Then, we went to their home for the rest of the afternoon where we enjoyed each other’s company, sitting outside in the screen room for most of the day. We ordered Pizza for dinner before heading back to the marina. They were also kind enough to let us drive their vehicle home, since we planned to get together at their home the next day for some memorial day fun.
On Monday morning, we left the marina around 9:30, taking advantage of the fact that we had a vehicle to do some provisioning. We made stops at Sam’s Club, Walmart, and Home Depot, securing needed items. When we arrived around 1 p.m., a feast was in the works. Shera had prepared a delicious meal of grilled ribeye steaks, baked beans, deviled eggs, and baked potatoes. Mmm! And, there was strawberry shortcake for dessert. The girls played scrabble, while Justin and I enjoyed good conversation and a little theologizing. At the end of our partying, they were kind enough to take us by Publix before dropping us at the marina for the night. What a great beginning to our time in Charleston.
We plan to be here for a month. I need to get work done on the boat. I have sails and reefing lines to repair, we hope to replace the stack pack for the mainsail. I need work done on the generator and water maker. I’m installing a new head. And, there are a number of other jobs I hope to accomplish while here. Besides this, I have quite a stack of things I need to do in preparation for my part-time locums work, which will be upon me before I know it. We also plan to take a week’s vacation from Beatitude to meet some of our family on the North Carolina Outer Banks. We’ll be renting a car and driving to meet up with them. Cindy will also likely visit her family in Ohio for a week while Beatitude remains in Charleston. It’ll be a busy month, and then we’ll continue northward.