As I begin today’s musings, I must mention one thing I neglected yesterday — Coosahachie. Most people think the name of Waxahachie, TX, is strange. But, when we drove into Georgia yesterday, we passed a place called Coosahachie. Even funnier, the initial sign was obscured behind trees. So, it took many forms by the time we saw the full word.
I think it ranks above Waxahachie, because it sounds oddly gross — like saying the word “moist.”
Now that I got that out of the way, let’s talk about today.
Savannah Walking Tour
We started the day with a 10:30am, 90-minute walking tour of Savannah. It was a price-conscious way to tour the area. Essentially, you tip the guide after the tour is done, and there is a recommended tip sheet online. In the end, the tour was about 35% of what it would have been if we paid for a bus or carriage tour.
Our guide Joe was fun and did a great job of blending personal stories with the history of his hometown. I think it was especially pleasant to tour with someone who is a native Savanian.
The girls enjoyed it too, except for Libbie, who was more interested in riding my shoulders stop-to-stop, pulling off my cap, and tossing it in the bushes. If you don’t know, Lib really enjoys giving people a hard time.
The highlight of the tour was an odd interruption from another tour guide wearing a tie-died onesie with the company name on the back “Savannah for Morons.” Indeed.
Side note — I mentioned yesterday that our tour company was explicit that if we arrived and saw a man named Dan in a seersucker suit, he was NOT our guide. The walking tour biz in Savannah must be cutthroat.
Sure enough, I creeped a picture of Dan, wearing his suit in 95-degree weather.
When Joe was asked about Dan, our guide said 3 things: 1) He’s a nice enough guy, 2) But, can you trust a guy who wears a seersucker suit in the Georgia summer, and 3) Dan isn’t even from Savannah, he’s from Ohio.
We learned a valuable lesson from our tour guide. Apparently, if Spanish moss falls from the trees to the ground, you shouldn’t pick it up.
Chiggers love Spanish moss and then love making a transition to human skin. I have intimate knowledge of chiggers from my Mississippi childhood. I have no desire to relive those days.
Apparently there is also a funny tie-in to an early Ford recall. Once upon a time, Ford decided to pad some of their car seats with Spanish moss to make them extra supple. It didn’t work out as planned.
A Tortoise on the Square
The girls petted a tortoise who was lunching in the park.
I asked LaShera tonight, “Do we know why there was a tortoise in the park?”
LaShera said, “That guy we saw was just there letting his tortoise eat grass, and he said people could touch it.”
There’s a setup for an SNL bit in there somewhere. But, the bigger question is why the guy had a giant tortoise that he totes around Savannah in what looked like a big piece of tupperware on wheels.
St. John the Baptist Cathedral
After the walking tour, we set off on our own to view a few things. I love looking at cathedrals and seeing the attention to detail. I also love how the aesthetic changes depending upon the national influences, Spanish, Roman, etc. Of course, I always find myself tempted to compare them to St. Patrick’s in NYC.
St. John’s was a nice, cool reprieve from the Savannah sun. The Cathedral was restored from a fire in the late 1800s, and it was done beautifully.
A Tour of the Wayne-Gordon House (Birthplace of Girl Scouts Founder)
After St. John’s, we took a tour of the home of Juliet Gordon Low who started Girl Scouts of America. LaShera has fond memories of the Scouts when she was a girl. So, every time a guide would ask if there were Scouts in the room, she raised her hand and said “a really old one.” Or, at least that’s what I heard.
Many of the decorations of the house were original to the house.
Snacks in the Treylor Park
We stopped for a mid-afternoon snack at the Treylor Park. There were quite a few rowdy folks, so Addie wasn’t particularly comfortable with the big group of guys sitting at the next table. Nor did she think it was funny when I threatened to dump a glass of water on them and pick a fight. (I’m a lover, not a fighter.)
The reason we stopped was for their ridiculous snackage. First, we ordered a pile of Nachos Grande. They weren’t actually nachos. They were a pile of waffle fries piled high with cheese, bacon, fried chicken, pickles, and a few other things thrown in.
Second, we ordered a plate of PB&J chicken wings with a jelly dipping sauce. The girls liked the fries, but not the wings. I’m a huge fan of wings. Those weren’t bad. But, they were — odd.
Ice Cream at Leopold’s
Next up, we stopped for heat relief at Leopold’s Ice Cream. There was a long line, but it moved relatively quickly.
To pass the time, one of the proprietors, Mary, handed out menus and told stories about the founding of their store. The shop was started in 1919 when the streets of Savannah were still dirt roads, and to this day everything they serve, including the toppings, are made from scratch.
The ice cream was divine. LaShera and I both made sure one scoop was Georgia Peach.
I am happy to report that despite our time outdoors, every member of the family is sunburn free. That may have something to do with the generous application of spray-on sunscreen. Plus, as a lifelong member of the pasty-face society, I have mad sunscreen skills.
Showers and a Spot of Tea
When you are on the road, you realize what a luxury a good shower is. Last year as we traveled toward Montana, we were lucky if we had a true wet shower ever 4 days. There were a lot of sink wash-ups and dry shampoo days. When we could find a pay shower, we rejoiced.
Our camper has a shower, which we use occasionally. But, when you are off-grid, the pump drains the battery. Nothing kills a battery faster than draining it completely, and we haven’t made an upgrade to solar for boondocking yet.
Not to mention, my experience in a pop-up camper shower is a bit like Buddy the Elf at the North Pole.
If you spend as much time on the road as we do, you learn that there are a few tiers of showers.
- “Non-existent.” (Wishing you had one.)
- “At least there’s a shower.” (Glad you had one, but that was gross.)
- “That shower was amazing.”
- “Skidaway Island State Park.” (Added because of Savannah.)
Because of this campground, I added that fourth category. They are fantastic.
What made the showers so great? First, the shower rooms were exceptionally clean. Second, there was an upper and a lower shower head, which could be independently controlled. It was like one of those drive-through car washes for your body. I aimed one at my shoulders and one at my bum, which made for a nice little massage to end the day.
Remains of the Day
After a hot day, we returned to the camper. Libbie was intent on playing at the playground. Sometime’s it really is about the simple things in life.
Now, we’re tucked away in our camper. I put on a kettle so that LaShera and I can enjoy a spot of tea to wrap the day, while the girls color and do sudoku in the back bunk.
As the poet Ice Cube once penned, “Today was a good day.”
Tomorrow, we cross the border into Florida.