Day Trip: Charleston

We left the house a little before 8:00 AM and headed for Charleston down the backroads.

We always take the backroads. Why? Because the traffic on the highway is usually horrible, and even when it’s flowing well, a lot of people shouldn’t be allowed to drive. It’s a privilege, not a right.

Secondly, there is nothing to see on the highway.

Year’s ago, I found Mayesville by accident. Then the old downtown was deserted. Now they torn down a lot of the old buildings and refurbished a couple.

I would have never taken my original pics of Mayesville if I hadn’t wandered the back roads and rolled into it by accident.


We stopped by Salem Black River Church as well for a break on the way. It’s one of the oldest churches around these parts and is reportedly haunted. It’s of such interest to local ghost hunters that there are security cameras and patrols after dark. No trespassing is enforced.


We finally made it to Charleston about 11:30 AM and made our way to the SC Aquarium.

The aquarium opened in May of 2000 So this year they celebrated their 22nd anniversary. It’s a great place. They have live touch tanks where you can actually touch some fish: Manta Rays, tiger sharks, starfish, and the like. Pretty neat.

The big boast of the SC Aquarium is the main tank which is called The Great Ocean tank.

The largest exhibit in the zoo is the Great Ocean Tank, which extends from the first to the third floor of the Aquarium and is the deepest tank in North America (42 feet); it holds more than 385,000 US gallons (1,460,000 l) of water and contains more than 700 animals

We were standing on the first floor and my daughter was really excited and was oohing and ahhing like a little kid. She’s 17.

A volunteer, named Angela, came over to my daughter and said, β€œhey you wanna see something cool?”.


Let me stop here for a moment, for a little PSA.

You know all those things you tell your kids about not taking candy from strangers? Don’t get into the van? Don’t help look for the lost puppy?

All that went straight out the window.

The next thing I know, we’re following some strange lady through a door and into an elevator. Where were we going? Who knows? I was just along for the ride apparently.

You can raise your kids. You can give them all the knowledge possible. All of a sudden, forgotten!


Some weird things have happened to us over the years just by chance. This is how we ended up in an abandoned park on top of a mountain. That’s an older story. Today was pretty neat.

The tank that I was talking about earlier, The Great Ocean Tank, is where she was taking us.

We got a behind-the-scenes look at the workings of the aquarium. One of the cooler random things that has happened to us.

Caretta, the resident loggerhead turtle.

The wife loves turtles and got to meet Caretta today. A lot closer than most visitors do, I suppose.

Caretta will turn 28 years old next month, and weighs over 220 pounds. She came to the Aquarium in 2001 at the age of 14. As a hatchling, a couple had taken her out of her natural habitat on a beach in Florida to keep her as a pet. Not realizing how large loggerheads become, they soon discovered that she was outgrowing the small enclosure they had kept her in. Once too big to care for and deemed non-releasable due to her upbringing in captivity, she was brought to the Aquarium du Quebec in Canada. The South Carolina Aquarium was in search of a sea turtle and she was transferred to our facility to live in the Great Ocean Tank in 2001. -From the aquarium website.

The moral of this story, I guess, is that sometimes, very rarely, stranger danger isn’t a thing.

And to think I wanted to go to the zoo today because it would be way cheaper.

We got more than our money’s worth today. Special that ks to Angela. You made our weekend.

More from today tomorrow. We just rolled in. It’s late.

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

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