I had a great time back in the US this Spring, though as always it passed too quickly and I didn’t build in any downtime. DC was good – I managed one night with Eva and Chris, two with Jane and three long runs (didn’t fall off the running wagon afterall). The conference I went for was also pretty great.
I didn’t really take pictures in DC, but this is from one of my morning runs:
From DC, I flew down to RDU and had the fortune to see Brian for a frozen yogurt for a quick hour-or-so catch-up. From there, Erin took me on a tour of some of the new places that have popped up in Raleigh since I moved: Raleigh Brewing Company; Trophy for more craft beers (though they also serve pizza. Their tap handles are pieces of old trophies, hence the name); then a Laotian restaurant called Bida Manda. Erin and I made our way back to her country home and were up at the crack of dawn to get to work early.
Being back for such a flash in the pan was strange, but so good to see everyone. Managed to have short catch-ups over Mexican with quite a few old friends & a few later that night, too.
After work, we went into town to Joule – a pretty frou frou cafe, honestly – where I ordered an ‘iced pourover’ meaning that they made coffee ice cubes out of the bean of the day rather than water ice. Erin had affogato with homemade blood orange ice cream. From there we went to Crank Arm Brewery to meet up with others for a block party fundraiser event called Oaks and Spokes. There was a bluegrass band and dozens and dozens of cyclists on their fancy bikes, pedalling in their fancy stands. It was the most ridiculous system to get a drink: 1. Wait in line to get a wristband. 2. Wait in line to buy tickets. 3. Wait in line at the bar to buy beer with your tickets. No cash or card accepted – only tickets. Later on, I finally got a chance to go to Garland. No pictures from Raleigh, unfortunately!
The next morning, Erin and I were up fairly early to make our way down to Savannah. On the way, in McColl, SC, an equestrian rode on up to the gas station (from Erin’s Instagram).
We stopped at Cracker Barrel on the way for the full Southern experience but – tip to the wise – just split one of the easy-to-split mains (shrimp and hushpuppies with okra, greens, mac & cheese AND biscuits included on the side) which was way more than enough food for two.
We stayed in this lovely place in the lower apartment for the next 3 nights, right near Forsyth Park (from Erin’s Instagram):
From there, we walked around Forsyth, the neighborhoods and many squares, and ended up at the delicious (and expensive) Soho Cafe. It was a beautiful space, and my mahi mahi was delicious. From there we made our way back, stopped at Kroger for wine and curled up with pjs and Homeland (I rewatched the first part of S2 with her).
Erin with the Spanish Moss, which is neither Spanish nor mossThe next day, we overslept a little bit, then went to the Sentient Bean, a nice brunch spot at the end of Forsyth Park. It was quick, cheap and healthy… but there were a few oddities in my food. Most notably, I got these polenta-brussel sprout-garlic cubes alongside fresh salsa, greens, veggies and homefries – but I swear I found what was a mealworm towards the end of my meal. Makes sense: polenta is corn meal afterall. Gross.
We walked through more squares into town to explore a few shops, City Market, the ugly River walk and then the famous Leopold’s ice cream.
Erin in a pile of confettiFrom there, we went to the riverside for one drink, then came back to the house and I actually went for a run. Forsyth Park is an exact mile, so I did 4 loops (dying of heat, dehydration and ice cream). After showers, we went out for burgers at the unpretentious Public Kitchen. And from there to the nice craft beer bar, the Distillery.
You know itYou know it!And then the famous Bonaventure Cemetary to wander the creepy gardens. You have to drive out there a good 15 minutes or so. And for the rest of the day? Tybee Island! We had fish tacos at the Social Club, then took beach chairs, towels and books out to the beach for the rest of the afternoon. Bliss. I got dumb sunburns though (I forgot to apply on just parts of my body, which is really painful and annoying).