After spending what felt like the greatest night of sleep of my life on a mattress made of the burned out hopes and dreams of thousands, I got my shit packed and headed north to Savannah, GA. If you haven't been to Savannah, it's an incredible city of history, art, and tree lined streets with streets made of cobblestone specifically designed to destroy your car's suspension and destroy your kidneys in the process.
I first visited after my high school graduation in 1998. Long story, short - Arthor, a good friend of mine, wanted to visit the Savannah College of Art & Design - S.C.A.D. shortly after we graduated from high school. He is a talented artist and illustrator, while I was a graphic artist with photography interests. We'd make a powerhouse team so we figured let's check it out and see if we can do it. Turns out the price was just over the top for me and I couldn't do it. But I loved the school, I love the area, etc, etc.
Fast forward 16 or so years, and I'm meeting up with my friend Gillian at our favorite low-key, hometown diner - IHOP. I hadn't seen her in years. We had a good laugh and heart-to-heart conversation about this crazy journey I decided to take. In the meanwhile, I annihilated a Country Fried Steak and Eggs combo, fired up on some coffee. and after an hour or so it was time for us to go.
Gillian pointed out that Savannah is an open-carry city - so I assumed I could wear my weapon loud and proud! However, she meant drinks and the server then offered me a to-go cup. For a split second, I thought I could get used to stumbling around the streets of Savannah with a beer in my styrofoam cup. Then, I realized that's what all homeless people do and they don't need a city ordinance to approve of their life choices.
We then parted ways and I found myself in historic district of Savannah. I quickly remembered why I loved that place. Damn. The culture. The street art. THE CRIME! Wait...no I mean the diversity. Just so much history to absorb. One cannot do this in a couple of hours, but I figured I'd give it a shot.
I turned off Victory Blvd and right onto Bull Street when I spotted this and had to stop and check it out. Very trippy. Cosmic enlightenment if you will. I loved it. I envy anyone with that level of artistic vision.
I can draw some pretty sweet stick-figures doing unconscionable things to each other. But that's about it.
My mother - the ageless vampire that she is - is also an incredible artist.
As I'm heading up that way, I am creeping in second gear and see this Bob Ross look-a-like strolling away from me. I had to capture it.
I wanted to yell "PRETTY LITTLE CLOUDS!" but I figured I didn't want to make a complete ass of myself within the first few minutes of my arrival.
After reminiscing down memory lane, finally go to my destination and realized I've never parked down by water before.
If I hadn't figured out that you have to drive on the trolley tracks for the smoothest ride, or you'll destroy your car.
I parked Sabrina (my Kia Sorento) and waited patiently for easily 10 minutes while this super hot, albeit reading-impaired young lady, struggled to jam her credit card into the fucking parking meter. I swear I lost valuable time in my life waiting for this and I ended up daydreaming about food.
I was seconds away from saying "FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT HOLY!" but god was on her side and that card was finally accepted.
After dropping my 4 quarters into the machine, I turned around and I realized I totally parked like a douchebag.
I took a long slow walk around, enjoying everything. For some reason, everyone was freezing. I was the only one in a t-shirt and I swear it was like 70 degrees.
Pays to be chubby sometimes.
I tried bribing the bead dealer into helping me steal the U.S.S. Savannah ship fountain, but in a Dom Toretto voice, he mumbled "I'll die before I go back." Referring to going his time in prison.
I must have laughed for 5 minutes straight.
One of my goals on this trip was try some really good local brews. The awesome barkeep at Fiddler's Crab House recommended a Southbound Brewing Co Double IPA called Picture of Nectar.
For a Double IPA, I was surprised to find that I actually enjoyed it's slight nectar taste and smooth hop flavor. It wasn't like most Double IPAs that make me wince at first. The pour was dark orange and it was very aromatic. If you like floral and fruit scents mixed, this is something you should try. It's not pungent or overbearing.
Once I paid my bar tab, I was ready to see the Riverwalk a little more. The bartender offered me Bloody Mary to go. I laughed at the idea of drinking, walking, and shooting. Reluctantly, I turned down his offer and hit the street.
That's when I met this awesome musician who was waiting on a brick layer to finish working on his repairs so he could start playing. We started chatting and he asked me "man, where are you from?" I responded "New York and Florida." He laughed and said "I always thought New Yorkers were dicks" and I didn't want to ruin his perception of us so I karate chopped him in the throat. Surely, I jest.
Actually, he asked me what's my favorite song and I pointed out that I'm a Wynton Marsalis fan and he nearly bludgeoned me with his Saxophone. He is much more of a Bradford Marsalis fan and can completely agree. Even though they are brothers, they have two completely different styles of composition and most jazz lovers like either one or the other, but never both.
I told him I sold all my belongings and decided to take this epic road trip up and across the country. He thought it was brilliant and said "I think we all need to ake this journey at some point in life. Safe travels, my brother." We shook hands and parted ways.
I hopped in the car and dialed in Laurel, MD and hit the road. I did nearly smash that shitty Galaxy Core Optimus Prime into the beautiful cobblestone walkway after it had the damnedest time finding a GPS signal. But I took a deep breath and blamed it on the clouds. And Satan.
Stay tuned for more updates and check out my gofundme campaign! If you've got a couple of bucks to spare, help support this awesome trip. I am offering drunken lap dances and foot massages to top donors.