A few photos of the September 15th beach trip in no particular order. No parties, dancing, or rendezvous, just the kids and me hanging out. I'm afraid this summer was a bust. But you know what they say about a bad day at the beach.
One of my favorite spots on Pawelys Island facing the marsh close to the north causeway. Had Spoilboy and Wiggles been more appreciative of nature and the beauty of the marsh along with the ability to be quiet I would have loved to sit at this spot and just watch the tide come in. A few trips ago I bumped into a couple that I had been friends with in high school at this spot enjoying the view and having a moment alone before returning home. Incredibly despite having family still in Georgetown and Pawleys my old high school friends actually thought I had died years back. Apparently the high school reunion organizers had sent a card to my last know address years before and got back a response that I had died. Several times I have thought about tracking down the reunion organizers to see what address they sent that card to to find out who said I was dead but I frankly don't have time.
A long deserted stretch of Huntington Beach State Park a little south of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. When I lived on the coast this was my second favorite place to hang out. While many beaches have problems with to many people causing problems this one, and this section in particular, is almost always this deserted. I had several long evening walks down this way while in college with some awesome ladies. One "walk" lasted too long with my girlfriend and I running for the car trying to get out before the park closed. We didn't make it, and we had to deal with a grinning park ranger who I thought would turn out to be a jerk but just said that he had dealt with this before and escorted us out.
Darth Spoilboy and Miss Wiggles. After months of pain-in-the-ass issues at work and getting the money pit ready to sell, if the market ever improves, we loaded up in the starship and made it down to the coast on September 15th. It was a perfect day with a great breeze and the kids really enjoyed running around on the beach. Miss Wiggle was convinced she could catch a sandpiper and ruined some good nature shots I was trying to get. Saw a dolphin out in the water and both Spoilboy and I had to stop her from trying to catch a ride with it. We had a nice long walk up the beach of about three miles both ways. Spoilboy and Wiggles handled the march but Wiggles was asleep in the car just as soon as I put her in the car.
On the south end of Pawleys Island Sunday morning. Tide was coming in and a heavy wind had the surf really rough. Saw this guy in his boat where the creek separating the island from the mainland runs into the ocean. I actually thought he was going to loose his boat due to the rough surf and end up in the ocean because for a few minutes he couldn't seem to stand up. Dude was finally able get everything under control and and head back up the creek and safer waters.
Spoilboy, Wiggles, and me heading back to Uncle Paul's place before heading home toward Columbia. Many of the beachhouses in this shot are survivors of Hurricane Hugo and while they were extensively damaged in the storm they were rebuilt back close to the same style that existed before the storm. On the north end of Pawleys many of the houses are of a new style with glassed in porches that drive me utterly crazy. Pawleys before Hugo use to carry the slogan "Arrogantly Shabby" due to the nature of the structures on the island. After Hugo and later with an influx of (I'll be kind) newcomers the new construction on the island tended to be McMansions on stilts creating a, I hoped, a tongue and cheek new slogan saying "Arrogantly arrogant". Unfortunately, having met many of the newcomers the new slogan has been taken to heart. One of the features almost universal to older houses was a huge screened in porch facing the marsh or ocean to catch breezes to keep cool. Many of the new houses have huge plate glass windows depending on air conditioning to overcome the small greenhouse effect they produce and enclosing the people inside. Overlooking the over use of air conditioning and the fact that what another hurricane will turn those huge glass windows into shiny tiny razor sharp shards I have a huge time trying to understand why people would invest so much money in a beach house and not want to experience the environment. If they just wanted to see the beach a huge plasma TV and a beach video playing continuously would have been a lot cheaper.
While looking somewhat in a good state of repair, to me the picture below is the holy ruin of Pop's Grill and a place where for years teenagers and even families came to catch a quick burger or hot dog after spending time on the beach. The insidious growth and American addiction to the Burger Clown spelled the end of this landmark. Several times the place has been reopened but with the new owners violating the spirit of the place as it was meant to be when it opened in the 50's. Way before I ever came along the Pawleys Island community was a small village away from just about everything but enjoying a special spot on the planet. Although a small general store existed just off the island just about all supplies for living involved traveling to Georgetown and even longer distances if you needed something special. The glories of Wal-Mart and hyper-consumerism had yet to come about to supply your midnight desire for popcorn or cheap CD's. At least in my view sometime around the early 90's the small village disappeared with a rabid development allowing in a huge crop of snobby Benz driving newcomers that has spoiled to a great extent the special nature of what once existed. Many upper class subdivisions have been built on what was once swamps and raising property taxes and forcing many longtime middle class and working locals inland. Making matters worse a home insurance crisis I believe on par with what is happening in Florida is adding to the exodus of locals. Sometimes I wonder if a new type of 21st century landed gentry is being created with the rich only being able to afford coastal property and the middle and working classes at some point being restricted to affordable resorts. Almost makes me look forward to rising sea levels and stronger hurricanes from global warming.
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