New Year in Margaritaville
09 January 2010
So, on New Year's Eve, as planned, we made it to Myrtle Beach. This very popular tourist area in South Carolina, is loaded with hotels/motels, restaurants and other attractions. Friends of ours from home regularly come here as while the weather is not as temperate as Florida, it is generally pleasant and reasonably priced until the high season. This, being the low season, meant great prices on rooms and we stayed at the Sheraton in a spacious and elegant room. Chopin likes it of course, being a better alternative to being stuck in the car.
We decide go out to Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville Café for New Year's celebrations. You probably know that I'm a huge J B fan and this will be a treat. However, lest you think that this is a small, beach bar built of driftwood and other detritus you are sorely misled. This is one of a chain of funky but very commercial and pricey bars/restaurants where in addition to food and drinks you can purchase any type of tourist junk t-shirt, poster, cosy etc.
It's really busy but and we have to wait for a while to get a table. There is a really good band and the atmosphere is obviously festive. A young man asks if he can share our table and soon we are joined by this fellow, Brandon, his fiancée and there two friends. The three girls are nurses and Brandon is a teacher and we enjoyed sharing our table and backgrounds with these interesting young people.
We decide to go back to the hotel by midnight but on our walk back to the Sheraton, it turns 12:00. We hope for a happy 2010!
We get up slowly and late next day and realize that it'll be a push to make Stuart this day so decide to stay another night on the road. We head out late morning with an approximate destination of Jekyll Island, Georgia. Jekyll Island is a very interesting place; we had intended to stop down here by boat on our way down last fall but didn't so this visit by car would have to suffice. Unfortunately we could not get a room; either they would not take pets, were booked up or only had smoking rooms available so we had to settle for a basic but pleasant room in neighbouring Brunswick.
Up early the next day with an easy drive to Stuart and back on Sea Sharp. While I'm not sure how I thought the transition to retirement would be at times, I do come to the realization that we don't necessarily have to make every minute count and taking the extra day to get to Sea Sharp was fine and restful. As we approach Florida, we are now anxious to get back on board.