Here’s the thing about the deep south, and cities such as Charleston, Beaufort and Savannah, it’s kinda like no other place you’ll ever visit in the US. But then again the same can probably be said about the Pacific Northwest or the Southwest or the Midwest Bible Belt. But then again… the history of the south is, well, like no other.
Divided as a Nation
Okay, really, the US is so freakin huge that until you spend time exploring each of the regions, you really can’t have a sense of what makes this country tick; why we are so – divided as a nation – as spewed by the current political rhetoric. But spend some time exploring the back roads of this country and you’ll find yourself asking, “How could it be anything but divided?”
We’ve taken 4 road trips across this country, and back again, and every time we hit the road I learn something new. And although we were recently only on the road for 2 weeks, this time was no exception. I learned so much.
A Passion for History
One of the perks of publishing a blog is that it sometimes opens doors for you; an opportunity to meet and talk with someone that most likely would not happen otherwise. Enter Tony. Tony who is the director of the Old Exchange & Provost Dungeon in Charleston, South Carolina, who gifted us with tickets to the Old Exchange and the Slave Mart. Tony, who spent over an hour talking with us, sharing his passion for the history of the deep south, and beyond. I learned more in that 1 hour than I did in a semester’s worth of US History.
The Moral Compass
When you travel through the south, it can be a conundrum for the moral compass. The culture, the food, the architecture, etc., all beg to inspire the soul. Yet, you have to remind yourself – and take the time to acknowledge – the history of the region. Those beautiful homes were built by the enslaved. And that the Slave Mart was exactly that, a place to buy/sell human beings. Be inspired, but be a witness as well and learn from the experience.
Looking for Rhett Butler
And that’s the thing. To be inspired by the grand piazzas, of the homes of Charleston, is in fact inevitable; you can’t help yourself. Strolling the cobblestone streets is like walking back through time and half expecting to find Rhett Butler leaning against a street lamp tipping his hat to you. It is the essence and charm of Charleston.
Still Private & Still White
Charleston. For some the civil war is a state of being. For others, grand homes equal grand wealth and status. While still others love their city and have found a way to pay homage to the past while embracing today and being excited about tomorrow. And then there’s the last bastion of days gone by – the Carolina Yacht Club, still private and still white. Or, sadly, the tent city just outside the downtown historic core.
Charleston, it’s an amalgamation and it’s all kinds of fabulous!