Monday, October 13, 2008
Friday morning was our scheduled photo shoot at Fort Pulaski. We woke up to a cloudy sky. And while there was a threat of rain, you could not beat the temperature and the breeze. In hindsight, that cloudy morning was a forecast of the entire weekend.
We decided to skip breakfast so we could get to the Fort as early as possible. I had called earlier in the week to O.K. the shoot and they had been very accommodating to the request. I had not mentioned the weapons. When we arrived, Darlin’ and I went to the Visitor Center in hopes of getting the rapier, cutlass and three flintlocks into the Fort for the photo shoot. After a lovely conversation, the distribution of Bunny stickers to the Park employees and Rangers, and weapons inspection by the Park Rangers, everything was OK’d – much to my Bosun’s surprise.
For the next three to four hours, it was all about playing pirate. It took awhile to make it around the Fort. There were so many photo opportunities. We started at the top with one of the cannons. Then we switched sides to get the battle damaged wall and the sea channel behind us. Downstairs, there were windows, doors, jail cells and the catacombs. In between staging and taking our photos, we posed with other guests at the Fort; including children and a honeymooning couple.
After the photos, we changed and went looking for lunch. We were starved! Darlin' had been told about this great local place near the lighthouse. We went looking for it with no luck. Finally, we stopped at the first place we saw to get a meal. The Sugar Shack was far from the best but for a starved crew of pirates - that sandwich, French fries and ice cream was damn good! After lunch, we checked-out one of the local tacky tourist souvenir shops that we all love so well. It was called Waves and had the required large, fiberglass shark out front. It was a good little souvenir shop but not nearly as tacky as we had hoped – it was Tybee Island after all. Darlin' actually found her a shirt (can you call a tube top a shirt?) and Powder Monkey and I found the best plastic shoes ever!
The Bosun decided to ride down to the Southside of the island and scout the festival area. There we discovered even more tacky tourist shops. One thing about these shops on Tybee, most of them seem to carry the exact same merchandise. It was strange. There was one shop down on the right corner that had some different things and that is where I ended up buying my Tybee pirate t-shirt.
Once we made it back to the house, it was time to relax a little. After enjoying the porch swing for awhile, some of the crew decided it was time for a walk on the beach. I had a serious urge to put my feet in the water. We walked toward the Festivities. At the pier, we took a stroll through the Thieves Market and ran into Pirate Bob’s crew. Since we really had not come down prepared to shop, we headed back to the house to gather the rest of the crew for dinner.
We decided to try and find the elusive North Beach Grill for dinner. Now, one would think if you can’t find the place during the daytime how the hell are you going to find it at night? I guess that was the challenge. We drove, we looked and saw nothing. We had been told it looked more like a shack that restaurant but we had seen nothing! We pulled down this dead-end street to turn around and lo and behold, to our left, in a parking lot, we saw lights. Not restaurant lights, just Christmas lights around some trees and a deck. We debated. It could be someone’s house but it could also be North Beach Grill. We decided to give it a try. It took driving all the way over to realize it was indeed what we had been seeking. I don’t even recall if it had a sign. We parked and made it inside just before the rain started. It was a shack with screen windows and fans. The word fancy was no even in this places area code. The waitress recommended the ‘Tybee Tea’. This should have given us a hint of how good the food was going to be. The ‘Tea’ was strong. You could smell the alcohol as soon as the waitress put it on the table in front of you. As you took the first sip, it was amazing how fruity it was and how easy it was to drink. We had to know what was in it. We were told: Cruzan Mango rum, Pineapple rum, Coconut rum, Vanilla rum, Meyers rum with a splash of O.J. and cranberry juice. It was deliciously deadly. I’m glad Darrell and I just split one. Our Cabin Girl now has been tasked with reproducing this wonderful concoction.
The meal was amazing. I ordered Jerk Chicken. Darrell had ordered BBQ Salmon that came with peas, rice, and sweet potatoes. The food was very Caribbean influenced and the peas had a real kick but were so addictively good.
Good drink, excellent food and a big bill (and worth every penny) later, we were the most content pirate crew you had ever laid eyes upon. We waited for the next break in the rain and made a run for the van. It was back to the house for R&R on the big, beautiful porch. I don’t know what time we turned in (or in some cases – simply passed out on the sofa) but we were in no hurry getting up on Saturday.