Tuesday, September 11, 2012

That we might never forget

This 

and

This

that we might never forget

Monday, September 10, 2012

Touring Charleston . . . alternatively titled The Day I drug my family around Charleston


Vacation for me isn't a terribly complicated thing.

I am happy on a beach relaxing,
driving riding along while Hero Husband drives us in an RV across the country,
I am happy wandering the streets soaking up the experience of wherever we happen to be.

This is not true for my family.
They want (in no particular order) 
good food, 
a comfy bed, 
lots of playtime, 
no driving in cars 
and please Mom no sightseeing
(unless it is shopping & that is an exception only for Miss Thing).

Which is why it is so darned sweet that they were game to 
brave the wilds of downtown Charleston and go exploring.

I like to think that it was for the love of their sweet devoted wife and mother (that would be me), but truthfully I think they just kept reminding themselves that in just a matter of days they would be on a cruise ship and have all their vacation needs met in one place.

Until then it was all about the sightseeing.

If it weren't for the gigantasaurus mosquitos I could totally live here.

I also say that about almost every place we visit.





We toured old houses where the decoration in the entryway was hand stenciled by Louis Comfort Tiffany and paid for with money from shipping.  You can tell this by the rope detailing
(in the glass, floor tiles & trim)




old cemeteries,





shopped in the open air markets,




and toured the Old Exchange building, where in 1791 
President George Washington partied when he visited Charleston, 




 and where our whole family got to sign
the Declaration of Independence.





For the record Super Son was not declaring his own independence just yet.

He still likes that his parents pay for summer camp I guess.

We walked a few blocks to the Blind Tiger and had lunch.




You may have noticed Miss Thing picked up a hat for herself along the way.

After we ordered lunch she was happy to show it off.




Then she wanted me to put it on




and Super Son




Next it was Genolyne's turn

are you sensing a pattern yet?




Trinket just had to be different




but of course getting Daddy to pose was the big winner.




Then we were back to walking.

We found carriage blocks on many streets.

Carriage blocks were commonplace while horses (or carriages) were the primary
means of transportation.  It was a little boost to get you up where you were going 
and had the added bonus of keeping the ladies skirts out of the detritus of the street.




I want a dress that requires a carriage block.

And a carriage.

And then I would need a block too.

Anyway

Trinket and I left Hero Husband and the kids to explore a bit while we toured
one last house on the battery.




After our fun with the Declaration of Independence it was a little surreal to find
hanging on the wall an original print of the South Carolina Articles of Secession




and money.




We found a fun fountain to play in and for some reason the Wee Ones thought it would be fun to try and stay dry at the same time.




Which is fun as long as you don't get the the wrong part of the umbrella caught in the water




Which is exactly what happened to Miss Thing.

Then she fell down and cut her hand on the arm of the umbrella.

There were many tears.

There were no bandaids.

Thankfully Mama had a sock in the backpack and with Hero Husband's
creative use of a palm frond we got her all taken care of.




And no little flesh wound was going to keep her from swimming 
when they found this fountain.




Pineapples are the symbol of hospitality.

Just in case you didn't know.


I am particularly fond of the street signs in Old Charleston.




Logic tells me that this is a good solution for a coastal area that deals with storms and hurricanes, but personally I just like street signs that stay put.  It makes life easier for
the tourists thats for sure.  

Unless you are a tourist looking at a street sign on the ground
and not watching for things like poles and walls.  


Which has never happened to me . . . in the last five minutes.


Not too far from South Market Street is the Custom House.





With all the history we to be found I was surprised to find that this is still actually a customs house.  As in the US Customs officers that review your paperwork when you re-enter the country didn't have far to walk to get to the port where our cruise ship was parked.

docked?

moored?

I'm not a sailor so I am just going to quit now.


A staircase like this just begs for a little Rocky moment.

Of course my precious Wee Ones didn't know what that
was so Hero Husband had to lead the charge.




And so as the adventure of downtown Charleston drew to a close we all
loaded up in Winston for the drive home.  

Oh, did I forget to tell you about Winston?

Winston is the 18 year old Lincoln Towncar that my cousin drives.

When you are in Charleston and have 6 people that 
need to get downtown to sightsee what's a girl to do?  

Call on Winston.

Winston has huge bench seats that accommodate 14 people and 
one blind poodle, if you happen to have one that needs a ride somewhere.

He also and tons of character, but sadly no air conditioning and only one working window.

And after a day of sightseeing we all load up in Winston for the drive home.

Old women Smokin' hot ladies who could sightsee and take tours all day in the front




Exhausted men and children in the back




Even though they look hot and sweaty you can trust me

the backseat got the better breeze.