Thursday, March 12, 2020

Georgia, the whole day through

Driftwood Beach on Jekyll Island

We heard that in Georgia boat slips and RV storage were plentiful and affordable. There were a couple of boats there that piqued our curiousity, and we needed to lay low and wait out the weather before heading North to see the boats we are most excited about. All the stars aligned in one place: Brunswick.

It's on the ICW and it's a hurricane hole, there's plenty of support nearby for just about any RV or boat project. There are bicycle paths everywhere, it seems like an affordable bicycle-friendly town. There's just enough history and sight-seeing to give us a weekend breather, but not so much that we are distracted when we should be working. Perfect.

Neither of the boats we toured turned out to be Miss Right, but the marina is just perfect and will likely become the home base for our boat, Loretta and Mr. Toad, at least during the transition period.

The 656-foot long Golden Ray is clearly visible in Brunswick harbor. She caught fire and capsized while leaving port in September 2019, with a cargo of 4000 Hyundai cars and crew of 24. The first 20 folks were easily rescued, the last 4 crew waited to be extricated from the 150-degree engine room by a round-the-clock rescue team with a diamond-tipped cutter. Officials have yet to release their final findings; debating the reasons for the incident and removal solutions for the huge ship and stricken Hyundais has become a local pastime.

History feels very close here in Georgia. On nearby Jekyll Island new sand-colored hotels juxtapose comfortably alongside beautiful rambling ranch-style brick homes from the '50s, ruins from the original British settlements of the 1700s, a large relatively new 4H club complete with a beehive of bus activity, and timeless driftwood beaches. A web of bicycle paths connects them all.

The Horton House was built in 1743, it's all that remains of the once thriving farm and brewery.

This region was the site of several skirmishes between the British, the Spanish, and the local native population. Ultimately Jekyll Island was settled in the 1730s by Major Horton, a British war hero who had done time in a Spanish war prison and was rewarded for his service with a farmable plot of land on the beautiful island; the shell of his home is all that really remains intact to pay homage.

Another great benefit of spending time in Georgia was that we were within reach of our Atlanta friends, and it was good to catch up with them for a day in Savannah.

Looking down on River Street

Savannah's such a beautiful place, the pictures speak for themselves. Enjoy.

Here and there the concrete chips away to reveal the original cobblestone of Savannah's streets.

Masthead inside the Boar's Head Grill, the oldest restaurant in Savannah

Inside the Boar's Head Grill, the oldest restaurant in Savannah, this section of the restaurant was built in 1780, the town itself goes back to 1743.

War Memorial on the riverfront in Savannah

The staircases between Bay and River Streets are historically accurate: steep, narrow and treacherous. Our friend tells me the handrails are a rather recent addition, they weren't here when he was an 18-year old army soldier drinking at the waterfront on off-duty leave. How he and his fellow soldiers survived their off-duty time here without falling to their deaths is a mystery.

We are continuing the boat search and following the weather up the East Coast. Next planned stops on the East Coast boat shopping tour: Charleston SC, Oriental NC, and Annapolis MD.

Internet Speed Comparison
Blythe Island Regional Campground, Bruswick GA
Sampled 3/1/20 at 2:30 pm

MB down
MB up
Calyx (Sprint)
Google Fi
Jetpack (Verizon)
Park wifi