Had a truly good sleep tonight, really sorry that the alarm went off this morning. But we want to spend this morning at Boone Hall Plantation and be on time. It is not so hot yet then and (more importantly) it’s not so busy!
Earlier, we planned to do both Boone Hall, and additionally do a Harbour tour through the port of Charleston as well… Only then we have to be back at a fixed time and the departure times of the boat are not very favorable. It’s funny, Miriam had been wondering earlier this week whether we should not better forget the cruise. But she did not say anything about it to me. Now I came up with the same reservations! So the choice was easy, no harbour tour. We go to Boone Hall Plantation and historic Charleston!
But first repack the suitcases. In the restaurant we had a delicious breakfast. The buffet looked more than fine and there was plenty of choice.
After breakfast we loaded the luggage into the car, we’re getting experienced now. And then we went. First we stopped at Panera to get bread, so lunch is arranged again! Pretty easy and all four of us like it that way.
Boone Hall Plantation is America’s oldest plantation that is still in use. Formerly, cotton and then pecan nuts were grown here. Today, fruits and vegetables are grown here. The crop is mostly sold in their farmer’s market.
The name Boone Hall probably does not say much. But perhaps the name Mont Royal might ring a bell … The house, the library and the magnificent Avenue of Oaks, have been settings in the series North and South as the plantation home of Orry Main!
I myself have always loved this series and even found recently in preparation for this trip, along with the children watching. Of course I know that this series has also been romanticized, but mostly it gives a fairly good picture of the Civil War.
We’ve been once before to this plantation and we wanted to show it to the children as well. As a kind of closure of the last days where the Civil War has largely been the main theme. And … a little for Samantha as well. She ended last year, with a school classmate together, doing a project (Diary of a slave) and then used some photos from our previous album as decoration!
But we digress…
At Boone Hall things have changed quite a bit, fortunately largely positively. On the Avenue of Oaks, we drove to the parking lot. This is simply indescribable, it’s so beautiful! And at the end of this avenue the the fence with behind it the house.
At the hospitality center we could sign up for a tour of the house. Unfortunately during this tour we can not make photographs. Miriam already knew from last time, so the camera (this time) stays in the bag.
Our guide, Bob, was very easy to follow and told a lot about the house, the family and how the slaves on this plantation worked and lived. This tour lasted about half an hour.
After we stepped on a tour vehicle for a tour over the plantation. The slave house street can wait!
The plantation was actually bigger than we expected. And then there’s even already a good piece of land sold off! Part of the plantation is still in use for growing fruits and vegetables. And another part is used for events. Last weekend “TheVillage People” played (and yes they still live and perform…).
Back at the house we visited the houses where the slaves lived . This has really changed. The houses were or remained the same, but inside they were now more decorated. Some houses were decorated as they once were used and other houses were used as exhibition space to use to tell more about slavery. It was all very clear and, (especially) for the children, very instructive.
Meanwhile the sun began to sting and we decided to go back to the car and go to Downtown Charleston.
We parked the car at the Visitors Center from where we continued with the DASH (a kind of old-fashioned van). And the wait lasted and lasted, but then the bus finally came.
So we got in, paid for of the ride, she rode the bus about 3 meters ahead and waited another 20 minutes (with engine running). While behind us the same bus stopped on the route and left again!
But she continued to wait. Without saying a word to the passengers. Oy… BUSDRIVER, MOVE THAT BUS…!
But it appeared that she was swapping with another driver. That was an improvement indeed … this lady was very sunny :o)
After this round-trrip, we went back to the car and drove to the Tanger Outlets. Have look at Tommy!!
I found a nice windbreaker. For the rest it was a bit disappointing. Geordi was looking for a Hilfiger shirt for the young son of his teacher (which she asked for). But to the dismay of Geordi there was nothing special. No problem, we really are going to see still a number Hilfiger before we leave!
|*far away in the distance, Fort Sumter, where the Civil Wars first shots were fired!*|
After that we went to Brunswick, where we stay overnight.
Not much to report on the trip. Except that it seemed it be hard again to find a restaurant. Fortunately we finally arrived at a Ruby Tuesday’s. Not quite what we had in our heads, but the food here is generally not bad.
There was also a small outlet, so… we shopped here. Nice finds at Tommy Hilfiger. Geordi has finally found something for his teacher, Sam a nice shirt and Miriam a nice shirt. Everything in the store at least 30% discount and on top of the total another 10% extra discount! Fun shopping that way!
Ralph Lauren was a bit disappointing, unfortunately, so we quickly went to Ruby’s.
We were quite hungry! A very friendly waitress helped us and Miriam asked her for a watermelon lemonade (a drink of which we don’t recall the name). But she told us most guests do not really like it. So… Miriam just picked something else, a Tropical crush. That tasted good, just like the food.
We could move on again now!
After about another 14 miles we arrived at our hotel (Clarion Express) for the last night on the road. SIGH! The hotel is booked through Hotwire, and after a number of quite luxurious hotels during the past few days, this hotel is a bit of a disappointment! Star ratings of Hotwire do not have much to do with reality, because this is clearly not a 4 star hotel!
It began with loud music at the reception. Then … all baggage must be taken up the stairs. Well, to put it nicely, Miriam was not happy. Maybe it sound very spoiled now, but this is not a hotel we would have normally chosen! Even considered checking out and finding another hotel somewhere else … But otherwise it looked clean, so we decided to stay. It is (thankfully) only for one night!
Tomorrow we go ‘home’ to Disney World. We have all really been looking forward to that. If only because we can finally unpack our suitcases for two weeks… :o)