Saturday, January 30, 2010

Update From South of the State Line

Here is it Saturday night already - I'm in my jammies waiting for the 8:00 movie surprisingly like it would be if I were home. I just returned from "Speed's Kitchen" for dinner. Jimmy, my new buddy accompanied me. Here's what I know for sure:

Speed's Kitchen
About 40 years ago two Mom's decided they had
been fixing lunches for kids and husbands so long
that they should open a restaurant. So they did what
all resourceful women did back in the 70's. They bought a couple
of double wides, hooked them together, opened
a restaurant and called it Speed's Kitchen.
They serve Steaks and Seafood and are open from
5 - 9PM. If you want liquor bring your own because
they never bothered with a liquor license. Over
the years the place has changed hands, but furniture
and decorations have remained in tact.

I haven't properly described Jimmy yet, but I will as time goes on. Suffice to say he is Lin (my landladys) husband, he's71 with a touch of dementia and loves to go out. When we are out he talks to everyone, whether he knows them or not. Tonight we aren't seated for 5 mins. when Jimmy starts talking to the lady at the next table. Did I mention that wherever we go Jimmy likes to talk to people? So far everyone we have met he knows someone they know or they know his Mamas Daddy or Great Grand Pappy. At one restaurant he told the table "see that pretty woman across from me? She came all the way from Missourah just to see me!" Let's just say going out with Jimmy is an experience - he's a good man.

Lyn has an indoor pool 10 feet from my door, I think is would be called a small lap pool. Anyway she said I am welcome to use it so I have been swimming everyday. I also have a cable channel that has yoga - can it get much better? Oh I forgot - it can get better - walk around the house and you are sittin' by the dock of the bay (or river as the case may be). Once you drive through everyone's yard and get here it is quite beautiful.

Today I went to the Darien Outlet Mall and hit the honey hole. Ends up I get all the way down here and discover I didn't bring a housecoat. So I thought I pick one up. The cheapest I could find was 20 bucks which I just couldn't do. I mean 20 dollars for something I don't need? So I went to the resell-it shop. For $10.00 I got a housecoat, a darling green shirt (that I wore to dinner tonight) a darrrrling nightgown, a pair of Capri's, a black sweatshirt that zips up the front with "Georgia" on it and a brand new omelet pan!! I couldn't believe it. I told the lady that these were very good prices and she said "well the owner told me to price everything to go so that's what I'm doing". I love it - Joyce and Peggy I just with the two of you were here to enjoy it with me.

I went out to dinner last night with Lin and Jimmy over to Johnny and Nelda's house. Their house is on the river and it nice, nice, nice. We had a good down home dinner of smoked pork, lacy cornbread, sweet potato souffle and peas that I thought were black-eyed but I was told they are not black eyed peas - you put "hot chow chow" on them and they are suppose to be really good. I took the peas but passed on the chow chow. So my first homemade Southern dinner was quite tasty. All of the people I'm meeting are friendly and nice and fun to talk to. I'm sure they are wondering why I am here all by myself and why don't I have any friends. But I can't get all caught up in what others think.

I am finding out that traveling around USA is almost like going to a foreign country. Each part of the country has it's own intricacies and customs. It is pretty cool to get to spend this much time somewhere all together different and know that you still have your home to go back to. The menu at Speed's Kitchen ends with:
Not a place for
Fast lane folks
Ain't got no red lights
No 4-lanes
We move slow here
Try it - Good for your health

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Quotes from the Deep South

When talking about an owner of one
of the local restaurants he said:
"He's jam up and jelly tight"
(meaning he runs a good place)

While fighting with her husband she said
"I'm not in menopause - I'm in meno - permanent"

"We were married for 30 years, we have been 'not-
doing it' for 13" (they have been married
for 43 years)

"I'll be attending the Jump Up at Paula's tonight"
means - I'll be going to dinner at Paula's

I will drive myself over cause I never know when I might "put my lipstick on"
in other words I want my own car so I can leave
when I want to.

As Bob, TC & I were driving around Brunswick TC commented on how many people play golf and how stupid it looked chasing a little white ball. Bob said I know - "I used to golf but I quit - first of all
it's no fun and second it very expensive!" I think that pretty
much sums up how a lot of people feel about the sport!

as more quotable quotes occur I'll update this page

Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Different way of livin'

Caroline left yesterday - we did so much while she was here that I just relaxed today - until I saw Jimmy and went out on his boat for a while. Jimmy and Lin are my landlords and they are both a riot. They dog sit for me when I go out, they have an indoor heated pool so I can do water exercise and now they take me out in the boat! The river down here is a lot different that up North - today we passed Harris Neck Island, Little Muddy and Big Muddy and you don't want to get caught in Big Muddy or you'll never get out! The sun was shining and we had a great ride. Next I'm going to see if Jimmy will teach me how to fish.

While Caroline was here we went all over the place - Savannah, St Simon's Island, Jekyll Island, Brunswick and Darien. On St. Simon's Island we ate at Barbara Jean's and had the
Best Crab Cakes
in Georgia if not on the east coast! The island was beautiful but the Crab Cakes were the highlight of the day - or so I thought until we stopped at
The Purple Pickle
in Darien. Man oh man it was unbelievable. First of all the restaurant is in an old house and it's painted in different shades of - you guessed it - purple. Art work for sale all over the walls - very eclectic. We both chose the
Parmesan Crusted Talapia
stuffed mushrooms
twice backed potatoes
I have never tasted anything so good! And that is why I am going back to the Pickle tomorrow to enjoy some more of their good food.

So far this week I have blown off Wii bowling and LRC! But next week I'm going to force myself to go out after dark. I have some pictures that I need to post - maybe I'll do that tomorrow.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Are you ready? Start your engines

We made it! It was a harrowing drive south - rain smashing into us at every turn - trying to get through the smokies at night in the rain was tough but we got through it. We ended up spending the night at a Motel 8 - it was almost 11:00 at night, we were dead tired and it was the first place we saw after the mountains. So I didn't tell them about Scarlet - we just snuck her in. OK - that was a mistake. Do not ever try and sneak a dog into a hotel - they bark at every sound and we soon found out why the hotel was so cheap. Every 18 wheeler had to drive through our parking lot to get to their parking lot. We went to bed late, got up early and skedaddled out of Chattanooga. We arrived at our destination about 4:00 yesterday and both of us almost died from shock. It took everything I had not to burst into tears. I have seen some run down shady looking places in my life but nothing prepared me for the shock of Shellman Bluff. The recession has hit this place hard - as a rock! Well before we actually got to town we decided to pick up a 12 pack - in hindsight was a mistake because no sooner did we get into town that I realized that I forgot the damn directions. We pull up to this house and it was on a river just like advertised but the "guest house" looked like a shack - a real shack. I got friggin' to my stomach. Plus we are buzzed so we can't stop laughing - literally. Now I'm like "Holy Shit Caroline - we have got to find someplace with Internet access so I can get to my email and find the directions." You need to understand - we are in the middle of no where - when the lady I'm renting from said this place was remote it in no way prepared me for how remote this really is! Caroline was freaking out right along with me but we knew we had to man up and do something. For some reason we stopped at a house and I knocked on the door to ask the lady if she knew where Serenity Bluff was - she said we were in it! I asked if she knew Lin the landlord and she did. She called Lin and Lin told us how to get to her house. Meanwhile some lady came up to Carolyn and asked if we needed help. Caroline told her yes and she said she knew where Lynn lived and she would take us there. By this time we were both scared of what we were going to find. But thank the Good Lord where Lin and her husband Jimmy live is truly beautiful. It's right on the river with a cool dock and a boat - just beautiful. My little cottage is behind their house - and the cottage is darling. Mind you we were still shell shocked so we took a deep breath, unpacked the car and decided to drive around and check out the town. One of the first things we found out is that this place isn't referred to as a town but as a fish camp! By now it's around 6:00 - so it was dark - that was probably a good thing. There are no roads here - there are dirt paths that you drive down. At times you feel like you are driving through someones front yard and at times I probably was. But I digress. We went down Main St and saw the Boat Shed (which the locals pronounce Bull Shid) tavern and figured that the best place to make our first stop was a tavern. We took a deep breath got out of the car and entered. The sign outside said they were forming a new bowling league - this filled us with anticipation until we read the sign closer and realized the league was WI bowling of which I am now a sub. Anyway the people we met last night were some of the friendliest people I have ever met. From the Bull Shed we went to Hunters Cafe right next to the river. The place is known for it's great food - by now we were pretty buzzed but we plowed through every one's yards and found the place. There we met more friendly people - by the time we left that bar we were feeling no pain - at all. Everyone we met said "How did you find Shellman's Bluff?" They love it here and would never leave. It is a down home place. This morning we decided to find the grocery store and try and get a feel for the area. Now I can honestly say this is a really nice place. Lots and lots of water and boats. I can't imagine what I would have done if Caroline didn't come with me - Thank God she did. So today we went into a town called Darion and found this cool wine shop that has wine tasting on Thursday nights. So my time is filling up.
  • Tuesdays - WI Bowling
  • Wednesday - Right, Left, Center at Hunters cafe ($3 a game)
  • Thursdays - wine tasting
I'm just going to have to suck it up and do things on my own. The people here are so friendly that I think this will be fun. Oh! I almost forgot - they also have a gaming boat and actually goes out into the ocean for a 5 hour cruise. It costs $10 and that includes dinner. We are going on the Sunday cruise from 1 to 6 then we are heading over to the Bull Shed to listen to a man that plays the sax - he's suppose to be outstanding. Things are looking up!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

And the adventure begins

While packing for my trip to the south I began comparing it to a man's survival trip. They go out into the woods for a predetermined number of days. They bring basic supplies. They go communicate with nature and they survive on their own. Aside for the basic supplies and the communicating with nature thing I'm doing just that - a Women's Survival Trip. I have 45 days basically alone in a foreign land doing who knows what. My car is packed to the gills and Scarlet can't figure out what is going on. Her bed is in the back seat and every time I go to the car and open the door she jumps in and gets all comfy. I have to tell her to get out and come inside - she is mortally afraid that I'm going to leave her. I'm picking up my friend Carolyn in about 20 mins and then we are taking off. Hopefully we will make it to Chattanooga tonight - I have a bottle of Irish Mist so that tonight we can have a toast and begin this southern sojourn out right! As time goes on I'll try and add pictures and of course stories that occur along the way. Until I cross the Mason/Dixon line take care of yourselves...