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Day 8
Sunday, April 17

No pics today again. I shopped Asheville for a digital camera after packing up in midmorning, but was unable to find any of the ones I wanted (my first choice is the Canon A95 but I would have settled for a Canon G6 or a Nikon 8700.) So at 1 PM I headed for Charleston, still cameraless. The only thing that saved total disaster is that I do have my camcorder along, so I can capture memories in that format although I won't be able to get them out of the camcorder until I get home. And won't be able to share them in this travelogue. Bummer.

The drive from Asheville to Charleston was just a drive. Part of the way I26 is just bordered by towns and cities, and the other part of the way it is bordered by tall woods with never a rise offering a vista -- and all of the way it is heavily trafficked. The only thing I can tell you about South Carolina from driving down I26 is that the trees lean heavily to pines, the dogwoods and redbuds are not present, and when you pass over a river or stream it is so choked with vegetation that you can't see the water. I can best sum it up by saying I did not miss my camera until I reached Charleston,

My bedroom at the Belvedere My bedroom at the Belvedere I'm in a B&B again here in Charleston, and what a house it is! Here's the bedroom I stayed in -- light and airy, beautifully decorated with pale yellow and blue with white, in completely authentic style. Its website did not do it justice. The Belvedere is an incredible, elegant mansion right in the historic district. Instead of just walking by and seeing the outside of the famous elegant Charleston houses, I am right inside one. Not only is the house gorgeous but it is beautifully decorated in period style. I can imagine myself back in time -- only with modern conveniences. I took a lot of camcorder footage of the house and now that I am home and could isolate stills from the videotape, I can share its beauty with you. It is really an experience. I can only dream of owning a place like this.

upper hallway at the Belvedere fancy moldings in the lower hall Here's a view down the staircase from the upper sitting room. In the entry hall, check out the gorgeous moldings and the extremely high ceiling.

We enjoyed our superb breakfast in this gorgeous dining room -- and here's a view of the lower part of the staircase from the entry hall. diningroom at the Belvedere staircase from below

Here's one last view of the diningroom. diningroom again

The streets are crowded with college students -- you would think you are in Westwood. When I commented on it to the innkeeper, she said that there are 3 colleges right nearby so I guess that explains it.

I had a cellphone message from Beth in Memphis, saying that Windy and Bentley have done the deed. Hurray! Here's hoping for 6 or 7 puppies with the best qualities of both their Mom and their Dad.

one of the old Charleston houses I just got back after an evening exploration of Charleston followed by dinner at the Charleston Crab House -- devilled crab platter and she-crab soup. Deeelicious! And the old houses of Charleston are sensational. another Charleston house I was particularly intrigued by the number of houses which are aligned to the side of their lot rather than the street. One wonders if at one time there was empty land in front of them where there is now another house. Seems strange to have a spacious veranda facing the wall of another house a mere handful of feet away. Also notice the formal front entry door, that opens not into the house but onto the veranda.

The houses down on Battery are awesome! What a fascinating old town -- obviously once the bastion of extreme wealth. I think I will take time in the morning to take a carriage tour, before heading for the Sea Islands and Savannah.

I'm actually getting quite tired by now and I may stop at Savannah, bypass the Okefenokee and cut straight across to Columbus from there.