The Orange Side of Savannah, Georgia

26 Jul

Last week, we spent some time in Hilton Head, South Carolina, but, in my mind, the best day consisted of a drive to Savannah, Georgia, the settlement established by James Oglethorpe when he first colonized the area. It is an old city with lots of history, and we rode a trolley through it all.

We saw the squares for which the city is famous filled with Live Oaks with Spanish Moss hanging from the branches. Each square is surrounded by a church and stately homes. One home was the headquarters for William Tecumseh Sherman when he captured the city on the completion of his march to the sea. Another home belonged to the family of Johnny Mercer and was the site of a murder that inspired Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil – both the book and the movie.

Since movies were brought up, we saw where Forrest Gump sat on a bench and told his life story but missed an entire square because Adam Sandler was in the process of filming a scene. I was hoping to see where Burt Reynolds filmed parts of Gator, but the tourism folks do not promote that one as much as others.

We saw a lot of interesting places. The location of John Wesley’s first sermon in the New World. The docks where cotton was loaded onto ships bound for England. Of course, no one mentioned the slaves who worked the cotton. To make up for that lack of information, we saw a building used by the Underground Railroad.

Savannah is a beautiful city of architectural wonders and almost three hundred years of history. It was also filled with people trying out for American Idol. Unfortunately, I did not get any pictures of that stuff. Our trolley ride made photography difficult. No pictures of Live Oaks. No pictures of monuments or statues.

However, I was able to take a picture of this place.image-44

When it was time for lunch, I asked the man at the visitor center counter a simple question.

“If you were going to lunch where would you go?”

He started down the typical list that included Paula Deen’s and other places where tourists are directed. I knew that he would not pick any of those places but could not deviate from the script. We wanted to eat with the locals, and this guy offered no help.

On the trolley ride, we passed a place that looked like what we wanted. Clary’s Cafe had a few outdoor tables and was off the beaten path. It did not take long to choose that over standing in line at one of the other places. We got out the trusty GPS and made our way through the squares and around Adam Sandler.

We pulled into the parking lot and made our way to the door. However, my wife was nowhere to be seen. She was standing behind the car talking to someone. It turned out to be the owner of the restaurant who saw the orange T on the front of my vehicle. For those who are not from around here, that is my signal to everyone that I am a fan of the University of Tennessee. As it turns out, the owner was also a fan of the Big Orange.

We talked for a while about the upcoming football season and the orange shrine her husband built at their home. They are from Tennessee and make it to as many games as they can. She has high hopes for the upcoming season and thinks Butch Jones has the program on the right track.

Eventually, we made our way inside and found what we were looking for. Sweet tea was in the pitcher, and lima beans were part the day’s special. It was a true southern restaurant that did not involve a television personality. However, that was not the best part.

As we finished our meal, the owner told the waitress to give us the Big Orange discount. After all, we were part of her college football family.

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8 Responses to “The Orange Side of Savannah, Georgia”

  1. frontrangescribbles July 27, 2015 at 12:01 #

    TN will be a team to watch this year that is for sure. Can’t wait for the season to start.

    • Rick July 27, 2015 at 14:29 #

      I hope that are a team to watch. We have gone through too many years of futility.

      • frontrangescribbles July 27, 2015 at 15:06 #

        Having suffered through Mizzou’s seasons in the 89’s and 90’s I understand

  2. Marilyn Armstrong July 27, 2015 at 16:15 #

    Everything I know about Savannah — until today — comes from Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil (book and movie). One of the few southern cities that sounds interesting enough to visit, other than New Orleans, Nashville, and Memphis. The only one we’ve made it to thus far is New Orleans. Garry twitches anyplace below the Mason-Dixon. he can’t help it.

    Traveling in general, I always look for popular local places. If the town is small enough and lacking celebrities, the most popular diner is usually a fine choice šŸ™‚

    • Rick July 27, 2015 at 18:10 #

      Nashville is a great place to visit. There is a lot more to it than country music. New Orleans is cool, but Memphis is not one of my favorite places. Savannah has lots of history, but the other cities you mentioned have lots of culture.

      Tell Garry that the south’s reputation is worse than its reality. On the whole, people get along rather well.

      By the way, my nephew is in Boston this week. He has seen all of the major historic sites before and is going to Fenway tomorrow night. What else does he need to do while there?

      • Marilyn Armstrong July 27, 2015 at 18:50 #

        If he hasn’t wandered through the Commons and Boston Gardens, or taken a ride on a swan boat, well he just has to do that šŸ™‚ Otherwise, there’s the Freedom Trail and Black History Museum (it may be called African-American History Museum these days) are full of surprises. This is a great time of year to be in Boston. Also, if he wanders over the the Cambridge side — The Museum of Science has Duck Boat rides down the Charles River. Very cool!

  3. jcalberta July 28, 2015 at 17:38 #

    When I go South of the border, that’s the first thing I notice: Americans got this food thing figured out.

    • Rick July 28, 2015 at 19:33 #

      That’s why it’s one of the fattest countries in the world.

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