October 13, 2011

Things I learned in Charleston, SC

I went on vacation with Jared's family for 3 years in college to the charmingly undeveloped Edisto Island. We'd always make a day trip to Charleston, but this past weekend was the first time we stayed for an extended period of time.

We very gleefully traveled down to Charleston for a friend's wedding, and extended it by a few days for a 1-year anniversary getaway.

Some things ya'll should know about Charleston:

1.  Sweet tea is better than regular tea. Drink it at all meals. In excessive quantities. Don't think about the disturbingly high sugar content.

2.  Things automatically sound nicer with ma'am and sir. Everyone should say this. Always. Instant manners.

3.  People are real attractive there. Like, all of them.

4. They are also dressy.  Nary a pair of sweatpants did I see, except for early on Sunday morning standing in line at a coffee shop near the College of Charleston, which is acceptable. Dinner and drinks on a weekend? You best be ready to don your sundress and heels my friends.

5.  I spied many a pair of Toms. Sometimes when you wear Toms in suburbia people look at you like you are an escaped mental patient. Toms in a charming Southern city = comfy and cute.

6.  History. Every building is quaint and historic and well-preserved. Monuments and important sites galore. Cobblestone streets. Things happened here. Important things. Not things like, some money-grubbing general contractors got together and tossed up some poorly-built every-one-looks-identical condos.

7.  Pedestrians don't cross the street until the light says they can. Huh.

8.  Pralines people. Pra. Lines.

9.  Although all you have been dreaming of for the past four years is pulled pork - because apparently the NJ/NYC area is not a fan of bbq-ing oinklets - Charleston is not in fact a mecca of BBQ, but rather seafood, which is all incredibly fresh and delicious, except it fails to satisfy your craving for said piglet.

10.  I was not completely clear on what grits actually are, but Charlestonians seem to like them a whole lot. With shrimp. And it's surprisingly tasty.

11.  And she-crab soup. Lots of she-crabs inundating the menus. Also delicious. Is it actually a girl crab? (Uh, yes, it actually is.)

12.  Any city in which you are always within a couple-block radius of a large body of water is better than a city in which there is no water to be found.

13.  In the NYC-area, you take all of the diversity for granted. In Charleston, the food is damn good. But godspeed finding much in the way of Chinese/Mexican/Indian sustenance or personage.

14.  But really. The food is good. Real good. I wish you a soul-shaking meal like the one I had at FIG, without question one of the best of my life.

{photo via everyday musings}

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