I know February is a short month, but it’s hard to believe I’ve let it slip away and that we’re now in the first full week of March without any kind of update. I could blame it on being too busy, or that I’ve had a cold, or a dozen other excuses, but mostly it’s just not getting around to it. Regardless, here’s an update, mostly focusing on the acquisition of a new camera lens and the outings to give it a test run.
I was in serious need of some hydrotherapy. I’d been in a funk ever since the election. To make matters worse, wildfires in the mountains of North and South Carolina had cast a pall of hazy smoke over everything. I told someone that I guess it was appropriate that the world looks like Mordor now that Trump has been elected. Add to that all of the other anxieties in our family life right now, and it was time to hit the water. I was able to find some solace, but it came at a price.
The Upstate Minis have been organizing some fantastic trips, lately, and I’ve been trying to take part in more of these. A few weeks ago Laura and I joined them for their X-Files Mystery Tour to PARI. This time, Jeff Goodman planned a trip down to the “Boneyard” on Bull Island to do some dawn photography. Sadly, Laura wasn’t able to go with us because of work. So, on Friday I swapped the Subaru for her Mini and joined the rest of the group for the drive down.
It’s fair season! Somehow I completely missed the Upper State South Carolina Fair, but that’s probably OK. For years, though, I’ve wanted to visit the North Carolina Mountain State Fair in Asheville, but I’ve always missed it. I almost missed it this year, but I spotted that this past Sunday was the last day. Laura had work to do on Sunday, so I decided that this was the year that I’d make that trek.
It was the second Saturday of the month and time for a Lowcountry Unfiltered Adventure. Wait. Didn’t I start the last post like that? Possibly, but the Saturday had actually arrived, and it was time to hit the water. I had spent a restful night in Waycross, Georgia, but now it was time to explore the waterways of the Okefenokee Swamp.
I’ve notice something new this year. Several communities have been holding spring fairs. Anderson held their fair a couple of weeks ago, and one is currently underway in Simpsonville. It seems a strange time of year to hold a fair, so I decided to check out the Simpsonville Fair at Heritage Park.
I had come to a roadblock on the Tobacco Trail, quite literally. The Highway 301 bridge across Lake Marion still exists, and still connects across the lake. However, in 1987 it was closed to automotive traffic, and now serves as a fishing bridge. If I were going to cross from Orangeburg into Clarendon County, I was going to have to do some backtracking.
For some reason the town of Santee intrigues me. It’s something of an anomaly compared to the other cities on the Tobacco Trail. There is no main street or central business district. Those features make me think that the town as, say, Orangeburg, Allendale or Bamberg. I decided to find out more about it. In the process of that research I discovered a new ghost town.
I was out exploring the Tobacco Trail through South Carolina. So far I had started at the SC-GA border on the Savannah River and had crossed Allendale, Bamberg, and a good portion of Orangeburg Counties. Orangeburg is a large county, and is bordered by Lake Marion on the east. I was ready to check out the rest of the county, and see how far I could go on this day’s exploration.