Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Charleston All Together

October 13, 2011

Thursday began with Cracker Barrel. When you live in a small town, about the only constant is Cracker Barrel. So, that is where our journey began. It was not a long drive, especially when you have a Grandmother that can talk up a storm. It is always nice to have her on the ride, because she never runs out of things to talk about. Plus, I don't get to see them that often, even though I only live 30 miles away. Funny how life works.

Sign at the Circle Church
The only negative about being locked up in the car with my Grandmother is, this is the time she brings up things that you really don't want to talk with her about. For example, she gives me the guilt trip about not being married, and if I really want to make her happy before she dies, yes she brought that one out, I would get married. Now, this all comes from her very religious up bringing, which I have nothing against, and even admire about her. The only thing it does not mesh well with is the fact that I live with someone without being married. This is a big one in her book. So, I always get the, "that is not how we raised you", "you know that I love you, but I don't love your decision", and now the "if you love me you will get married before I die. " It is a little hard to take when you are stuck in a car with her.

We arrived safely in Charleston, but according to my pop's watch, both stomach and wrist, it was lunch time. He is also severely diabetic, so we try to keep him on a schedule for eating, but that never happens when we are on vacation, no matter how hard we try.

However, we did park very close to Eli's Table, which use to be Joseph's. I hate to say, my food was horrible. I had the pesto, chicken, and artichoke flat bread pizza. Wow, did it have way too many artichokes, and the chicken was marinated in something sweet, so the blends were not pleasant together. I picked off the chicken, but left most of the pizza. The only two redeeming things were the sweet tea, which I had not had in 6 days, and the pesto. It was fresh and tasty, but not good enough for me to eat the rest of the soggy mess.

The other food around the table didn't look as bad as mine. My mom's shrimp po-boy looked great, and my Grandmother's crab cakes seemed to really make her happy. My sister had a steak salad that looked really delicious, and she said the steak was some of the most tender meat she has ever had. I almost responded to that one, but my Grandparents were in the room. (hee hee) As for my Pop, he would eat about anything, so I think his roast beef sandwich did him just fine.What was disturbing was somehow my Grandmother got on the topic of oysters and them being an aphrodisiac. That is not something you want to hear come out of your 78 year old Grandmother's mouth.

We walked around the Charleston City Market and boy has it changed. Charleston has done a great remodeling job of the old market and it is really a nice place to shop for local artist items, as well as neat Charleston souvenirs. We actually had a really nice time walking through and enjoying the people. It was interesting to me how many visitors were actually from out of the country. Maybe South Carolina is opening up a little more than I thought.

Pop didn't do too well downtown. It is a lot of walking, and I really came to see just how much he is being affected by his health and age. To be totally honest, it scares the crap out of me.  I am so blessed to have them as my TRUE parents, and I don't like coming to grips with the fact that they are getting older.

 Off to the Condo to check in. The condo was great, and on the Isle of Palms in Wild Dunes. The condo was a perfect size, and we had plenty of room for the five of us. My Pop sleeps on the couch no matter where he is, and that left me and my sister in the room with two beds, and my mom and Grams with the king size bed. Somehow I ended up with the twin bed. I don't know how that happened.

We spent the rest of the evening relaxing and hanging out until time for dinner. We ended up at 17 North. Wow, was this place amazing. The food was absolutely terrific. My Grandparents are not use to eating out this much, or eating as expensive, so they were a little shocked. However, we made it work for them. Pop had an incredible pork chop, which came with their famous Mac-N-Cheese. I had a side of the mac-n-cheese, asparagus, and then shared the fish and chips with my sister. My mom and Grandmother had their soup of the day, and shared off our plates.

The serving are very big, so when you see that a side of mac-n-cheese cost $6.00, don't worry, you get your money worth. The mac-n-cheese is mouth watering, and has a blend of cheeses that you don't normally taste in "southern mac-n-cheese". The fish and chips were good, but not my favorite. Verona, my sister, really liked their pomme frites, but I don't like a lot of garlic on mine. I sort of wish we would have tried their fried chicken, but that just mean I will have to return in the future. Keep in mind you really can split plates here, and then save room for dessert. We didn't, which is a shame, because they had some really great sounding selections.

17 North Roadside Kitchen looks like a hole in the wall, and if you are not careful you will miss it on the side of the road. But, I highly recommend that you not miss it. If you are in the My. Pleasant or Isle of Palms area, and want a really great dinner, this is a great place to go. I would be back in a heartbeat.

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