Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Charleston

We arrived in Charleston, SC around noon in the 18th. We splurged on dock space so that we could do laundry, take showers and use the complimentary shuttle into town. We spent the afternoon in the S Carolina aquarium. The kids were really looking forward to it and it was a great time. The aquarium does a really nice job with all the native species. This was interesting to us because the night before we spent in a marsh and had done 'gunkholing' in the dinghy and saw many birds and animals, including a live whelk, oyster catchers, ibises, red drum (fish) and a baby otter. These are all inhabitants of the marshes and they take great advantage of the huge oyster bars.
We also saw dolphins feeding in these deep holes in the bends of the river we were anchored in. The kids were thrilled and as we tooled around were silent, listening and watching and appreciating the beauty and rawness of life in the marsh.


The aquarium also had a touch tank at which the kids spent a long time picking up sea urchins, hermit crabs and horseshoe crabs. They even helped feed the sea urchins and were so enthusiastic that they emerged soaked!





The boys decided that they should bring note books to record some of the different species that they saw and they also drew pictures of them. I think the consensus was that the otters were our favorite along with the green moray eel and blennies (little fish that use their pelvic fins to 'walk' along the sea bed. Oh, and we can't forget the chain dogfish and their babies!

















After leaving the aquarium, we took a CARTA bus into the market area and went to a restaurant called Hyman's and had po boys, grits, catfish, mahi mahi and oysters! A great way to end the day. We got back to the boat around 8, fired up the stove and tucked in. Before Charles and I went to bed though, Charles had noticed that one of our whisker stays (one on each side of the bow sprit) was ripped of and laying across the anchor. It turns out that the boat ahead of us on the dock had a had time docking and had come up against us while doing it. Between the current and the wind, we were not all that surprised. The owner of the boat was in touch with us this morning and all has been amicably dealt with.
Just a little back ground on Charleston: founded in 1670 by the Brits , Charleston got its name from King Charles II, who was apparently quite a hedonist! Colonist came to Charleston to create a pleasure filled, luxurious, gentrified, cosmopolitan town. Bordered on one side by the Ashley River and the other side by the Cooper River, Charleston sits facing the ocean and as a result is surrounded by strong currents and lots of commercial traffic. Always a major port Charlestons culture is influenced by the French, African, Spanish and Caribbean. This is easily seen in the architecture and, of course, the food. A great town to visit, lots to do, see and enjoy!

2 comments:

Gail said...

Charles,
Rec'd W-2 in mail today......nevermind.... :)

Glad you're enjoying Charlston. If you have a chance to try the shrimp burgers, go for it! They're yummy!!

Gail

Lopez Family said...

Hi Gail, Sherry intercepted the W-2 and forwaded to you for me, glad you got it, thanks so much for your comments, we really appreciate it!

Best, C.