With that, I'm going back to what I was doing -- which is looking for a place to retire. For the past two weeks B and I have been in Charleston, SC., or more precisely, at the beach about ten miles outside the city.
We've been enjoying the warm sunny days, soaking up the salt air, walking on the beach, and sampling local cuisine such as crab cakes, shrimp and grits, and fried green tomatoes. Last weekend we went to a jazz festival. The other day we rented bikes and rode down to the state park.
|Looking down King Street.|
And we've also gone into downtown Charleston a couple of times, to walk around, go shopping, visit the art galleries.
|Caviar and Bananas, a gourmet shop on George St. We know someone who works there.|
The main shopping area runs along King Street. Yesterday, while B was buying a couple of new items for her wardrobe, I found the nearby College of Charleston and walked around campus.
|This used to be a bookstore in Charleston. Now it's a College of Charleston communications building.|
I came out on Calhoun Street, then continued on to Marion Square -- both named after historic South Carolina figures who were heroes to some, but judged more harshly by history.
Francis Marion (1732 - 1795) better known as "The Swamp Fox" fought in the French and Indian War and later served as a military officer in the Continental army. He was hailed as a hero, pioneering guerrilla war tactics against the British in South Carolina, but he was also a slaveholder and found to have persecuted the Cherokee Indians.
|Monument to John C. Calhoun, located in Marion Square.|
The nearby Francis Marion Hotel is also named after him, along with Francis Marion National Forest and Francis Marion University, as well as towns and cities in more than a dozen states.
John C. Calhoun (1782 - 1850) was a U. S. congressman, Secretary of War, and later a U. S. senator. He ran for president in 1824, lost to John Adams and instead became vice president, first under Adams and then under Andrew Jackson. Calhoun was a slaveholder and a staunch defender of southern states rights against the federal government and perceived Northern threats.
|Mother Emmanuel AME church.|
A little farther down Calhoun St. I came to another landmark, the Mother Emmanuel AME church. It was here that Dylann Roof shot and killed nine parishioners -- not sometime before the Civil War, but just last year on June 17, 2015. Roof is currently undergoing competency evaluation even as a jury is being selected for his trial.
Yes, there is an ugly side to history, especially southern history, and to our current society as well. But we try not to dwell on that too much, and instead enjoy the more positive aspects of life. We did not take a carriage ride in Charleston, but a lot of people do.
|Carriage ride down Queen St.|
We did patronize one of the popular restaurants in the city. And then what did we do?
|Magnolias restaurant on East Bay St.|
We headed back to the beach.
|Back home at the end of the day.|