After many hours traveling today in the van, which was interrupted only by a bathroom break and the ubiquitous stop for a garishly advertised bag of roadside oranges and a few pecan rolls, we headed into Savannah during a blinding rainstorm punctuated by rather intimidating lightning and thunder.
Due to the raging storm our arrival at our hotel in the historic district was only slightly less dramatic than that of a few days ago at the resort in Aventura. And while we had a lovely time relaxing among the more-than-well-to-do, we dubbed our time there “The Clampetts Meet Miami.” On the way out I asked the valet who packed our van, “How many Toyota Sienna’s do you see here each week?” He just chuckled.
Did I mention that the “in-room dining” menu included two menu pages of selections for canine and feline resort guests? Florida state tax, 20 percent gratuity, and a $4.50 room delivery fee added to Fluffy or Lassie’s supper. Boo-yah!
But I digress…
After settling into our room in Savannah we stepped out and across the street, navigating down several surprisingly steep flights of narrow steps and over slick cobblestone walkways for a cozy supper and an after-dinner riverfront stroll. Although I’m prone to fall down stairs I had managed to stay upright, right until our server led us up to a table on the second floor of the Cotton Club, where we ate dinner.
How many people fall up the stairs?
Well, I fell flat on my face on the first landing, and luckily no one saw me at my most graceful. Finally seated, we schmoozed a bit with the neighboring table and then dug into fried green tomatoes and (gulp! not me) gator tail nuggets, but I was really just waiting finally to have shrimp and grits. Which I did.
Later, in a candy store we tasted a sample of some freshly pulled peanut butter taffy, and it was delightful. I’m not generally a fan, but we all agreed it was the best taffy any of us has ever tasted.
And not long afterwards, the boys were swimming in the hotel’s rooftop pool—how awesome is that?—while we enjoyed a nightcap. Intermittently, raindrops kissed the surface of the water.
At a table nearby a young man and young woman in pajamas were making plans for the coming days.They couldn’t have been more than twenty-three or four, but he was smoking a pipe and doing his best Fred MacMurray impression. And in a covered alcove a large, friendly group of seniors was quietly celebrating with numerous bottles and boxes of wine. (We’d locked ourselves out of the room, and Eddie found out while getting another key at the front desk that these rooftop partiers was a group of nuns and priests.)
As I write this it is nearing 11:00 p.m. Not long ago, Eddie and Jeff left to take a ghost tour of Savannah conducted by hearse, while Toby thought it a great treat to visit the ice and vending machines on our floor for a snack, a beverage, and a beautiful bucket of ice.
Remember when dropping coins in a vending machine and pressing the letters and numbers and watching your selection wind forward and fall was an adventure?
Apart from looking out the window at unfamiliar landscape we spent more time today watching a grumpy young guy pull and wrap taffy than anything else. It was pointless and mesmerizing and tasty, and isn’t that what vacations are partly about?
Quarters are starting to get close, yes, but nobody’s cried to go home yet. In truth, we all could use another week off, but there is a lot to remember, including the strawberry vending machine Pop-Tart enjoyed far past one’s usual bedtime on a hotel bed in a gracious Southern city where everyone’s sentences usually include at least one “y’all.”