Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Salter, SC Cotton

As you travel away from the South Carolina coast, you immediately find yourself in one of largest cotton growing areas in the U.S.  The fields are coming into bloom and the blossoms are lovely.

The little town of Salter is nearly a ghost town now but when cotton was king it was a thriving community.  

The Atlantic Coast Line railroad built a depot in the 1850s and Salter became a town on the map.  The depot served the town for over 100 years and on the other side of the tracks, Salters first cotton gin was built. The Salter gin is gone, closed in 1970 and torn down in 2015.  

This building served as a store for over a century. Its first proprietor, James Alurid Ferrell, opened a small mercantile in his home in 1880. After building this structure on the corner of his property, he moved his business here and operated the store until his death in 1918.

The Mosely store opened in 1921 and was run by several generations of Moselys until 1990.  Very faintly above the door you can still see the store name in faded letters.  

The old brick school is the only other old building left in Salters.  It was built in 1924 and housed three classrooms on the ground floor and a classroom and auditorium with a stage upstairs.  In 1925 there were 100 students in grades 1-11 and the school owned its own school bus.  

Williamsburg County's new cotton gin

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Now You See It, Now You Don't

I don't know what kind of flower this glorious thing is and don't have time to search for the name.  
It is outside my mom's room at the care center in the courtyard.

Mom had a big setback earlier this week. During physical therapy her femur dislocated from the hip joint and she was taken to the hospital where it was returned to its proper place.  Very painful. She is now back at the care center and wearing a cast-like thing holding everything in place.

We are back at home in SC and my sister is in Florida with her.

  I will be going back again soon.
🌴 🌴 🌴
Yesterday was exciting, a coast-to-coast total eclipse of the sun!  We were only a few miles from the epicenter and our little town had thousands of visitors.  People were even encouraged to rent extra bedrooms to visitors, which many did.
We stayed away from the crowds downtown and brought chairs to the nearby church parking lot which is lined with big old shade trees and a clear viewing area in the middle. 
 Everywhere people were sitting out in their yards, alone or in groups, watching the show.  It was touch-and-go all day weather-wise, but in the end we got lucky.  There were constant breaks in the clouds and we watched the whole thing.  At one point, as the light dimmed, the mosquitos came out and started biting.  Finally, it was dark as night -- for ONE MINUTE!  We could see the full corona around the sun and take off our glasses for one minute, which I did and took this photo.
The corona was just a thin line of light around the edge.  In the photo, the light became larger than the darkened center for some reason.  At the moment everything went dark, you could hear people shouting all over the neighborhood.  Shortly after that the clouds moved back in and the sun was obscured the rest of the day!
Our first lime, a Tahitian, ripened this week.  I've never grown citrus before and we've waited three summers for the first fruit. I feel like a proud parent or something.  

The Writer knew just what to do with it! 
 It was so ripe it fell off the tree and we both agreed -- it's the lime-i-est lime we ever tasted.  It's also huge, as you can see by my hand.  
🍋 🍋 🍋

And finally ... my book is coming along.  All the letters are transcribed (including many V-Mail letters which had to be read with a magnifying glass). I found some great surprises in the letters and I think the book is going to be even more interesting than I thought.  I'm ready to start the researching phase and I love to do research so I'm looking forward to that. 
When I've been working on it all day, it takes me a while to get back into the real world. 
 Isn't that crazy? 

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Life Happens: Plan B

Thanks for the great comments from my last post.  Your memories brought many more things about life in the 50s back to me.  
🤓    🤓    🤓     

This is where I'm spending my days right now, with my mom at the Life Care Center.  

She has good care, plenty of physical therapy, and it's a nice facility.  

Of course, she would much rather be home but it's going to be a good while before that can happen.  

It takes a long time for things to heal when you are 90. 


The dining room is elegant even, with lovely tablecloths and crystal and silver table settings.  

On the left is an ice cream parlor which is open for a while everyday with free cones and bowls for anyone.

There are two therapy dogs who come and go.  

This is Cricket, a teacup Schnauzer.  She weighs six pounds and comes every day.  
They say she gets bored if she has to stay at home.
She is quite used to posing for photos and needs no leash.

Can you believe those ears?!!

And here is Jingle Bell.  She used to work four hour shifts as a greeter at Walmart.
Now she is very old and the pace of a care home is more to her liking.  

Mom isn't fond of the food here so we bring fresh fruit, dark chocolate, and yesterday we brought her favorite grilled shrimp tacos from the marina. 
They are soooo good!

So that's where we are, making life's lemons into lemonade.  

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Fifties Flashback.

My daughters used to say, "Back in the 'olden days' when you grew up, Mom ... " and then ask a question about how things were done.  I came across this recently and it reminded me that the world of the Fifties really was different from the one they grew up in.  No wonder they had so many questions!

Do any of those ring a bell with you?

Me and my sister in the 1950s. 
I'm on the left, the one with sausage curls (just like Shirley Temple, doncha know!) and Nancy is wearing white knee socks with her Easter dress.  

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Some Days Are Socks

A week ago my mom fell in the church parking lot and broke her hip, which put a serious cramp in her style and our hearts in our throats.  
Mom is 90 years young and no one believes it.  She drives her younger friends to the grocery store, works two mornings a week in the church office, belongs to a book club and a card club, flies to Minnesota by herself, and so on.  
Mom lives in Florida.  The rest of us are in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and South Carolina.
She had a hip replacement and is now moved to a rehab center for a couple weeks.  One of my daughters, (and here's another story -- Sarah is being sent by her company to work in Germany for two years on 3 months' notice.  It's diamond earrings for Sarah, of course, but socks for us as we will miss her so much.) Sarah, is with Mom now and my other daughter (the one with four young boys and a full time job) will be with her for four days this weekend.  Then The Writer and I will swoop down (9 or 10 hour drive) for several days for her return home from rehab, followed by my sister and brother-in-law from Wisconsin. 
There have been at least 2000 text messages flying to figure this all out.  
But we did it, we have a plan.
Early this morning in the garden 
The garden has suffered from the heat but we may get a few more tomatoes yet.  The huge leaf on the upper right is a banana leaf.  
By the way, the raccoons got all my figs before they were ripe.  So disappointing!
The herb garden in the morning light
The Bird Girl on the right welcomes people to our home.
Can you find two "other" birds in the photo?  One is part of the trellis, the other is a real house finch which I didn't notice when I was taking the photo.  Surprise!