Leopold Ice Cream And Soda Fountain, Savannah, Georgia

I ate my way up and down the East Coast. I don’t have a bucket list of things to do, mine contains things to eat.

We were meandering through downtown Savannah and the morning was hot and I was hungry.

I’m always hungry.

In the vicinity of Savannah College of Art and Design, I noticed this ice cream shop and soda fountain.

Leopold’s.

It didn’t open until 11, and it was 10:45. People were lining up outside.

By the time we ate our ice cream, the line was out the door and every table was full.

All-you-can-eat Japanese and bubble tea

While in Savannah, we took the girls for Japanese since they both love sushi. It was an all-you-could-eat restaurant, which meant every time you finished something you could order another dish.

My daughter ordered so much sushi and appetizers that she forgot to order an entree. And she tried to teach her companion to use chopsticks. She wasn’t a good teacher.

They had a large variety of bubble tea. Gayle got strawberry. I got melon. It was our 16-year-old’s first bubble tea. She didn’t like or dislike it.

Personally I love tapioca in every form.

Day 7… and we’re not killing each other

Today is my daughter’s 14th birthday.

She wasn’t happy when I sailed across the room and leapt on her bed screaming in a falsetto, “it’s my baby’s birthday!”

At 6:30 a.m.

Today we hope to make it to around Richmond, Va., since we are due home tomorrow and I have to be back at work at 7 a.m. Monday.

I wonder if they missed me.

Our exciting plans for today include the bird sanctuary that was closed on Monday and an afternoon visit to the paranormal museum.

And finally… the Quality Inn right off I-95 in Fayetteville, N.C., may have been my favorite hotel balancing price and function. With taxes the room was about $70. The breakfast wasn’t exciting but in included a variety of hot items in addition to the continental selections. And personally, I loved that they offered peanut butter with their bread products.

The room was clean but sparse. Refrigerator a tad busted up but while trying to freeze water bottles into ice cubes for the cooler we almost had one freeze. The water pressure in the toilet was poor. But the pool open 10 a.m. to dusk and it was clean and a nice size for a small hotel. Coffee was decent. And they had a former room on the first floor converted into a fitness center. And a public laundry room.

Day… I don’t even know… Savannah to Charleston

I think it’s Thursday. I’m not sure. I’m drinking another bad cup of coffee, but decaf, as it is almost 9:30 p.m. Today was a fun day, we didn’t get that much exercise but the heat is still near 100 degrees. And I have yet to get a sunburn.

It took me about twenty minutes to figure out how to use the single serve Keurig. Hey, it’s been a long day… Because of all the crazy food we ate today, the teens opted for snacks instead of a meal so we stopped at Target (beer and wine. Sigh. Can you imagine beer and wine at Target in Pennsylvania. Gayle wouldn’t split a six pack.) The teens decided on cereal and milk. One got Cocoa pebbles, the other got Honeycomb. That got me craving Life so I got Market Pantry Cinnamon Oat Bites.

In my confusion, I forgot to get myself dinner. (We have a microwave we could have gotten frozen dinners.) But the milk is in the kids’ room. Yes, the kids have their own room. That’s a story for later in this post. So, right now I’m eating a half a box of cereal dry with an alligator slim jim.

But let me start with the beginning of the day…

If I can remember.

After our excursion to Waffle House, we headed to the University of Georgia’s aquarium. I will post more about that later, because even though it was small, it was very well put together and I got lots of photos and video.

Then we went to the Tybee Island lighthouse and climbed 178 stairs. The grounds of the lighthouse were amazing. It had three tenders at one point. And there were some fortifications to explore, but I will break those into another post too.

I want this to be about the journey.

After lunch at Chicken Lickin’, we took the scenic route up to Charleston and stopped at the Carolina Cider Company. Soda, pastry, CIDER in apple, peach, cherry and blueberry. Various fruit butters, I bought sweet potato butter and a bottle of pecan syrup. And the alligator stick. And a butterscotch root beer.

I booked the room via Hotel Tonight again. The deals near Charleston were no where near as cheap as all of our other destinations. So I splurged and picked the “solid” hotel instead of the “basic” one. So we are in a Wyndham Garden hotel tonight. Except I couldn’t request 2 beds, so we ended up with two rooms with king beds. But so far, we have been way under budget with hotel rooms so… you win some, you lose some.

At first I planned on dividing us by family. My daughter didn’t like that idea. So we let the kids have the second room.

We went to Azalea Park and learned driving through town that Summerville is the home of the first tea plantation and where Southern style sweet tea was born.

And the evening was spent at the hotel swimming and eating breakfast cereal.

Boogie Woogie Bugle Girl

Since we were staying so close to Petersburg Battlefield, we thought we’d run over and experience some Civil War history before we left town.

If I remember tonight, I will upload a photo gallery. Very. Cool. Place.

The visitors center wasn’t open. We arrived too early in the morning. But the National Park is gorgeous. Sadly, we found a gazillion mosquitoes. So by 9 am I was already providing a hardy breakfast for my insect companions.

The Battlefield has been meticulously groomed to not only preserve the history, but uses tall grass to indicate where various forces stood during battles.

Video of tall grass

The teens fell in love with the cannons. And we had fun wandering around. Then we saw the ranger raise the flag so we went into the visitors center and watched the movie.

OH MY.

The American Civil War is such a sad period in American history. The aggression among own our people. The race issue. The slavery issue. Our own people tearing our nation apart, destroying ourselves and our resources.

The battles in Petersburg were pivotal to the end of the Civil War, and some of the strategy involved were amazing. During the Battle of the Crater, the Northern Forces dug a tunnel under the Southern camp and filled it with something like 8000 pounds of gunpowder.

The resulting explosion was the 19th century version of a nuclear mushroom cloud.

And the men ran into the deep fiery crater to fight. Might be worth googling. Amazing story.

And then my daughter found a bugle in the gift shop.

She’s wanted a bugle for years.

A real brass Calvary bugle.

So she used her birthday money to buy it.

Hitting the Road Day 2

So this post is going to be a bit all over the place, loosely talking about our early morning before a second post will address the Civil War.

It’s day two of our crazy road trip from Pennsylvania to Georgia with two teenage girls. Day one we covered Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

We used the app Hotel Tonight to find a cheap hotel room in Hopewell, Va., three miles away from Petersburg National Battlefield.

It was a basic room in a Quality Inn motel with a very friendly staff. $59/night even with the taxes. My daughter loves hotels and motels even when they are extremely basic. She walks in proclaiming instantly, “I love this place!” Every. Single. Time.

I gave the teens their craft boxes.

We checked in at 9 pm and checked out at 8 am.

And after our continental breakfast with coffee I did not enjoy, we headed out into what was billed to be a 95 degree day ahead.

But we had given the girls whoopee cushions so the whoopee games begin…

PJ the Bear Visits DC

We arrived in Washington DC in good time: by 11 a.m. M and our Indian friends gave us a tour of the house they recently purchased, which right now has had the interior gutted and reframed.

We then headed to M’s apartment where our friends made us homemade Indian food that was out of this world. Frances had never had Indian before so that was her first adventure of the day.

We took the girls to the National Zoo, and while we did PJ the Bear visited the big monuments and the White House.

Reunited with PJ, we are now taking the scenic route (Maryland 210/Indian Head Highway) toward Richmond, Va.

For more on our adventures as they happen, follow me on Instagram: angelackerman.