Back and wreddy for Wednesday.
Departed from the homestead around 1145, Saturday, went speeding up I-95, averaging a nice 80mph in the Roadster. We bought a FM transmitter to hook our MP3 player, so we got to hear the music collection embedded in said device.
It gets to be a pain to use the old fashioned CD's. Imagine how horrible it was back when we had only AM radios in our cars, how did we survive?
About halfway through Georgia, we found ourselves doing 35 in a Biblical Downpour, wherein the visibility was about ten yards and all the fellow traveler's were flashing their emergency lights. Very annoying to me, but we stayed safe despite the orange and red strobes which removed the braking lights. I did look to see if anyone had deployed the life rafts on the side of the road.
The rain went away as we entered the Low country and we were directed by the signs to exit I-95 and turn onto old Highway 17 (Same one about two blocks from where I sit, now). The historic sign says "Blue Star Highway", in honor of the Veterans who fought in WW Eye-Eye.
I stole this image from: Image Source Page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zenoss/1469722859/
Everyone who drives long distance would do well to jump off the arterial Interstate System and go on the Blue Star highways for at least a few hours. Good way to see how life is still being lived in the smaller towns.
So we had to do the last sixty miles or so on Hwy 17, watching our speed closely and enjoying the sights of the Low Country.
Downtown Charleston was a small maze, and we made one wrong turn which happily was corrected by making another right a few blocks down. (I like how the city planners kept everything rectangular, so no one would ever get lost)
We had to call the Hotel to find out where to park. Finally, we said "Heck with it" and let the Bell Folks do the Valet parking, which cost $25.00 per day.
Five bucks to the very nice Porter and we were in our room.
Beautiful scenery of the City parking structure behind us, but we were in Charleston!
We dined at the Charleston Grill 1830, sharp. We dressed in glad rags and were seated with Liz and Jayson as our servers. We ordered some interesting dishes and chose a Pinot Noir as the libation. Mickey, the Manager, came by and served our wine.
I mentioned to Liz that the superb food was bettering our experience at the hotel... Liz spoke to the manager and soon enough I was being grilled by Mickey as to the quality of our stay.
My main complaint was that there were no coffee pots in the room. Mickey asked and received our room keys... He returned a few minutes later and gave us back the keys and said that we would have our coffee.
Our room keys were upgraded to allow us into the private club on the 7th and 8th floors, but we didn't really know about that until the next morning.
Anyway, we enjoyed the jazz trio and had a dessert of Port with cheeses.
Got back to the room after that great dinner, somewhere about 2130. We sat down and pondered opening a bottle of wine and about two minutes into sitting there SWWBO noticed an ice bucket with a bottle of bubbly on the coffee table. And some chocolate dipped strawberries next to the Champagne glasses...
So our stay (which was already looking up!) had just gotten better. Like fools we did drink that bottle, toasting our hotel and the great Manager Mickey.
There were some fuzzy heads the next morning, at about the crack of 0700. We cleaned up and went to the 8th floor for coffee. We found our selves in a very elegant lounge with large, ornate coffee urns along with smoked salmon, pastries and cereals. There were a couple large urns with various juices.
Things were looking up!
Anyway, the club lounge was gratis, so we breakfasted and returned down to the lower decks to begin our day.
We hiked to the City Pier, walked up and down the old streets and visited some of the Revolutionary period cemetaries. Because I was wearing the wrong shoes, I had to stop at a shoe store for new tennis shoes.
We went for lunch at the "Fleet Landing" restaurant, a little loud but great view of Patriot Point. For dessert we walked over to the Blind Tiger Pub. There was a pedal cab taking us home after that afternoon out, let me tell you!
Dinner for Sunday was in the Thoroughbred Club at the Hotel, I recommend the Lamp Pops, We had two orders. And while dining, we jammed with the two Piano plinkers, who provided for our entertainment. (We were the only ones there!)
Monday morning was the time to get out and change hotels to the Embassy Suites, by the Performing Arts Center. We gathered our gear together and had the Porters carry our gear to the Roadster. As they were loading the trunk, Clay, our Porter from Saturday pointed to a pair of Luxury Coaches just in front of our car.
"You know who belongs to those, right?" He smiled and pointed.
Indeed we did. And we drove off to Patriot Point.
Imagine how horrible it was back when we had only AM radios in our cars, how did we survive?
By listening to WLS out of Chicago... clear-channel, Baybee! I have not-so-fond memories of crossing the Big Empty that was Texas before the advent of the I-Whatevers.
As far as Blue Star highways go... my modus operandi when I was doin' the coast-to-coast and border-to-border gig in El Casa Móvil de Pennington was nothing BUT two-lane blacktop, always. But sometimes you don't have a choice... like I-80 across Utah.
Your weekend sounded wonderful!
Oh the memories of AM radio. I'm not sure we are better off with these fequency locked radios. I remember listening to KNBR all the way into New Mexico, back 30 years ago. Today, the radios are locked into a frequency and you can't move it a skosh right or left to get the sweet spot.
Love the two laners, too.
Sounds like a great weekend! We've never been to Charleston but have heard a lot of great things about it. Hope to sail there someday ...
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