Category Archives: #Wander

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

Wander

Earlier this week, I posted about wanting to go to the mountains. Later this week, I was outvoted, and we are heading to the coast tomorrow. Charleston, SC, to be specific.

Which is fine.

I am not a fan of the coast. I do not like the beach. I would rather stand on a mountain than get sand in every crack and crevice of my body.

But Charleston is great for a day. The Aquarium, historic downtown, maybe we’ll stay for the ghost tour, who knows?

I’m on a wander, and I’ll get some decent pics, I’m sureβ€”plenty of history and graveyards. Maybe I can get the crew to travel on a little further to the Angel Oak. The only problem with that is the last time we went there were so many people you couldn’t enjoy the size of the tree. It’s an incredible sight. It’s a lot to take in.

We shall see what we shall see. And then I’ll show it to youβ€”the pics. Not…never mind.

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

The Weekend Is Coming

The weekend is coming, and it’s going to be the rare long one. I’m seriously considering getting the family up on Saturday and taking a day trip up to the BRP.

Bridal Veil Falls

I checked the card on one of my cameras and found this video of Bridal Veil Falls. I was thinking about the mountains today before doing that.

I news the cool air. I need to stand on a mountain.

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

1/2 OF LAURENCE LEMPRIERE PRINCE

Sitting near the front of Old St. David’s Church in Cheraw, S.C. is this headstone.

One half? You ask yourself what happened here. Was there a terrible accident involving a train? An auto accident? Maybe a farming accident? No. Sometimes the truth is just better. I received this bit today from Sarah Spruill with Visit Cheraw.

β€œSomeone sent me your link re Laurence Prince. He grew up in Cheraw, but his mother was from Virginia. He was cremated and half of his ashes were buried in his father’s family plot and half in Virginia with his mother’s family. He would enjoy that this has gotten on the internet. Old St. David’s is a very beautiful church and cemetery. The oldest graves date back to the Revolutionary War, and the first Confederate Monument (c. 1867) ever erected is located here.”

I am pleased that Mr. Prince would have gotten a kick out of my having placed a piece about him here. It’s a shame to have never met him.

Thank you, Sarah.


This is a repost of a piece from my old blog Searching The South. Which I may or may not have an itch to start up again.

Maybe it’s time to wander.

A good wander heals the soul.

The Skipper

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

Adjustment

I am working tomorrow by choice and if I complain I want to be called out.

I need to have some work done on the wife’s car that I, shamefully, can’t do.

So I’m working tomorrow and taking the day off Monday. If the problem is resolved quickly enough, I’m then going to make a day of it and get new tires on the car.

And then, if there’s still a reasonable amount of time left in the day, I’m going on into work because that’s what we do.


I was catching memories on the iPad, and this pic popped up. It’s from this year on our anniversary weekend. We go. We eat. We hike. We spend time together without the kids. Once a year.

I like this one. I say that, and you think I’m talking about the picture. I do like the picture.

But…

I like this one. I think I’ll keep her.

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

The End

Mom and Dad are getting older and have decided to sell their place in the mountains. This has been our vacation place for the past six years.

Logan takes things as they come. It hasn’t bothered her much, although I know in the back of her mind she’ll miss it.

Sam is a bit upset. This is what he has known since he was four. I explained to him that now we’ll widen our travel area. We’ll make it a bigger adventure. And that piqued his interest.

We will still be mountain folk though the beach isn’t for us.

The wife and I aren’t looking forward to the hotel bills. But we’ve already found a small place in the same town that we love (see the post about Route 19 Inn), so you know there are other places out there for us.

Me? I’m wondering where I’m going to get my coffee.

I don’t do coffee shops. You’ll never find me in a Starbucks. I don’t do McCafΓ©s or frappΓ©s.

Nope. I’ve been going to the same gas station getting my coffee for my #CoffeeByTheCreek posts for the last six years.

I’ve made friends with the old fella that runs the place. He remembers me year after year. β€œHello, my friend. It has been two years almost since I saw you last!”

I’ll bet we talked thirty minutes last Friday. I’ll miss that.

So here’s to on down the road, bigger adventures, and new creeks.

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

The Adventurer’s Club

Long gone from the streets of Downtown Disney is The Adventurers Club.

From Pinterest

The wife and I visited there on our honeymoon several times. Entertaining and fun.

A memory on FB of the creed reminded me of this today.

From Theme Park University.

The Adventurer’s Club Creed

We climb the highest mountains,
just to get a better view.


We plumb the deepest oceans,
because we’re daring through and through.


We cross the scorching desert,
martinis in our hand.


We ski the polar ice caps,
in tuxedos looking grand.


We are reckless, brave, and loyal,
and valiant to the end.


If you come in here a stranger,
you will exit as a friend.


KUNGALOOSH!


Lots of Disneyesque fun geared more towards adults. Audience participation and interaction was a must.

I wish Disney would bring the club back in Epcot.

Part of the fun of the internet is discovery. Go look it up. 😏

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

Thomas Divide Tunnel

We found a new lost thing this weekend. Most folk will drive over it without even realizing it’s there.

From visitmysmokies.com:

The Civilian Conservation Corps was created in 1933 to provide jobs to young men who were skilled in masonry, engineering, architecture, landscaping, or simply hard work. They built hundreds of miles of roads and hiking trails, bridges, buildings, campgrounds, and more in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The CCC most commonly used stone to build the structures. Some of the most well-known structures they built are the original Oconaluftee Visitor Center, the tower at Mount Cammerer, and the four-arch Elkmont Bridge. However, some of the accomplishments of the CCC are less well known, like the secret tunnel under Clingmans Dome Road!

The Thomas Divide Tunnel is less than a mile west of the junction with Newfound Gap Road. When Clingmans Dome Road was finished in 1935, there was a trail that closely paralleled the upper section of Newfound Gap Road on the North Carolina side. It connected to the Appalachian Trail on the far side of Clingmans Dome Road. Instead of routing the trail to cross Clingmans Dome Road, the engineers chose to build the tunnel under the roadbed. This old hiker’s tunnel kept the hikers from having to cross over Clingmans Dome Road


We usually visit The Road To Nowhere and a tiny cemetery on Independence Day. The. We head over to Nantahala. This year we added in Clingmans Dome because we found this online. It’s harder and harder to find something we haven’t done that’s regular tourist stuff. Occasionally you have to dig a little deeper.

Trying out the DJI Mimo for the first time on the trail.

It’s not hard to find. Just after the turn onto Clingman’s Dome Road, there’s a pull-off to the right. Park there and make your way to the bridge and down along the side. Watch your step.

And there you are.

It’s a neat place to find, and you certainly won’t have to deal with many people. If I’m heading out to Clingman’s, I will visit again. Maybe take a little picnic lunch and sit at the end over the parkway.

I have many other vids and pics to download and edit from the last five or six days. At least I have material to post.

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

Independence Day

We’re still here in the mountains. We always come up for 4oJ weekend. Well, we couldn’t last year so that makes this year that much better.

Today is a wander around Bryson City, NC. And then over to Nantahala White Water Center. Then on to Clingman’s Dome. All of this through the mountains on roads engineered and dug through some of the toughest terrain in America. Not with modern machines. Which makes it so much more of an incredible feat.

We love it here. It’s a great reminder of what we have.

I’m still here.

You’re still here.

We’re still here.

Happy Independence Day


When I was a kid, a very long time ago, there used to be a thing called the nightly sign off for TV. And on our local channel WIS TV, John Wayne, the Duke, would do the voiceover on various scenes of our country. And he would read this poem.

I still hear his voice when I read this. It brings a tear to my eye.

America, Why I Love Her

You ask me why I love her? Give me time and I’ll explain;
Have you seen a Kansas sunset, or an Arizona rain?
Have you drifted on a bayou down Louisiana way?
Have you seen the cold fog drift over San Francisco Bay?

Have you heard a Bobwhite calling in the Carolina pines,
Or the bellow of a diesel in the Appalachian mines?
Does the call of the Niagara thrill you when you hear her waters roar,
Do you look with awe and wonder at her Massachusetts shore
where men who braved a hard new world first stepped on Plymouth’s rock?
Do you think of them when you stroll along New York city dock?

Have you seen a snowflake drifting in the Rockies, way up high?
Have you seen the sun come blazing down from a bright Nevada sky?
Do you hail to the Columbia as she rushes to the sea?
Do you bow your head at Gettysburg at our struggle to be free?

Have you seen the mighty Tetons? Have you watched an eagle soar?
Have you seen the Mississippi roll along Missouri’s shore?
Have you felt a chill at Michigan, when on a winter’s day
her waters raged along the shore in thunderous display?

Does the word ‘Aloha’ make you warm?
Do you stare in disbelief when you see the surf come roaring in at Waiamea reef?
From Alaska’s cold to the everglades, from the Rio Grande to Maine,
My heart cries out, my pulse runs fast at the might of her domain.

You ask me why I love her? I’ve a million reasons why —
My beautiful America, beneath God’s wide, wide sky.

By John Mitchum
Copyright 1971


For this morning.

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

Back In The Mountains: Day One (Part One)

We’ve finally broken free of lockdowns and masks and have run for the hills of North Carolina.

The kids came up yesterday morning, and we decided that if we got off work early enough that we’d come on up if we could find a room for one night.

We stayed at the Route 19 Inn which is a refurbished hotel that had been here since the 1940s.

I was speaking to the owner this morning and the place was buried under downed trees for years. They came in and completely refurbished the place, gave it an old school motor inn vibe and gone to work. They’ve really made something of the place in a year.

Y’all, abandoned is my thing. I have driven by this place for six years. It’s just off Soco Road. I can’t believe I haven’t noticed.

Just a quick review of the room.

Showers: EXCELLENT.

Bed: Comfortable.

It’s basic but you have cable (we didn’t even turn on the TV), USB charging ports, and the wifi was strong.

Nice price for a one night stay and finding a one nighter is hard nowadays. Extremely friendly owners.

We will stay there again.

That’s it. That’s the post.

Seegars

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