Our campground put us in proximity to Jekyll Island. Some people we met at the pool at TGO told us they go there every year on their way south for the winter, so we thought we'd check it out. Jekyll Island used to be a playground for the very wealthy. The Vanderbilts had a "cottage" here, as did the Goodyears. A group of wealthy investors bought the island, constructed a "clubhouse", and then built their cottages in the surrounding area. The clubhouse has now been converted to a five-star hotel, so you get the picture. Clubhouse = mega-hotel, and Cottage = mansion.
The next island to the north is St. Simon Island. We liked this island a lot more, as it's less remote feeling, and has more varied things to see. We stopped at the Visitor's Center and got some maps and tips from the volunteers. They suggested that we look for tree spirits. Supposedly there are 5 of them carved on trees on the island. We found 2. As we were searching for one, we stopped at a Farmers Market, where only 1 stand was operating. We asked the proprietor if she knew where the tree was, and she told us that it had been cut down...a small detail the visitors center forgot to pass that along to us!
Is it an elusive tree spirit?
After 3 nights we headed north, this time to Skidaway Island, to stay at our first Georgia State Park. This park lies just south of Savannah. Like Blythe Island, this park is heavily wooded. The park rangers told us not to worry, as they too had cable TV. Well, it's kind of a cable system, but it's very old, with very poor reception. ABC is just fuzzy static with moving shadows. The audio plays the background music loud and the voices soft. And when commercials come on, the audio doubles in volume! There are gnats and no-see-ums here too. Lucky for me, they like Donna better than me here. Now she is enduring the itchy bites. These bugs have given us the heebie-geebies. We feel them even when they aren't on us.
We have spent 2 days exploring Savannah. For those of you who follow the Food Network, you probably recognize the name Paula Deen. She has a restaurant in Savannah called The Lady and Sons. We had decided a long time ago, that if we were in the Savannah area, we would eat at this restaurant. I did some investigating, and found that they don't take reservations by phone. You have to go there and wait in line to get a reservation. The host arrives at 9:30am and starts taking lunch reservations...we got there about 9:35am to find a line about 100' long. Donna got in line while I parked the Jeep. The line moved quickly, and we got a lunch reservation for 11:00am. Our instructions were to be back at the restaurant at 10:45am and wait across the street. At 11:00am, they started calling names, and we got in shortly thereafter. Tour bus parties got priority over those of us commoners. We felt that this was a very odd way to operate, but it seemed to work OK. Once inside, we took the elevator to the 3rd floor, and were seated. I had read that if you hadn't been there before, do the buffet, as you get a lot of choices. We checked it out, and went for it! Fried chicken, BBQ chicken, Swiss steak (pork), rice, mashed potatoes, gravy, collard greens, Lima beans, string beans, sweet potatoes, and black-eyed peas were heaped on my plate. Not the best food for watching your calorie or cholesterol intake, but mighty tasty for a one-time event.
Paula Deen's restaurant
We decided that to best see all of the historical sites of Savannah, we would leave the driving to someone else. We signed up for a 3-hour extended tour with one of the local tour companies. It was great, and we learned about the history of Georgia, as well as seeing all of the squares, churches, synagogues, and historic houses. We could not have accomplished this on our own, one person driving, and not knowing what we were looking at.
A couple of Victorians
Another historical house