A Trip to Historic Savannah on Our 30th Anniversary
On June 3rd, 1989, my husband and I said our vows and sealed the deal. The wedding went well, but we had one, tiny problem. We had to change our Bahama honeymoon cruise for July because of my husband’s work schedule. As a result, we spent our honeymoon at the historic Foley House Inn in Savannah, Georgia (Savannah is about an hour from our house). In a last minute decision, we chose to go back to historic Savannah for a short trip on our 30th anniversary. Before we left, I woke up to a 30-rose arrangement in a vintage Hulk Hogan glass. It’s perfect for fat flower arrangements. I was overjoyed! We’re not big spenders when it comes to flowers. A 30-rose arrangement is big for us. I usually buy $5 bouquets at Walmart or Bilo. Picking them from my yard is even better.
Where We Stayed
I didn’t book the Foley House Inn the second time, but chose another historic inn closer to the water, between Bay and River Street. At the time I didn’t realize I was foiling my husbands’ plan. For 30 years I complained off and on that he never carried me over the threshold of the Foley House Inn. His plan was to right the wrong on our 30th anniversary trip. He did right the wrong at the Olde Harbour Inn, and it was really funny because we are 30 years older, and I definitely weigh more. I wish I had a picture of it, but it’s probably good that no one sees our awkward reenactment of a honeymoon threshold carry.
The Olde Harbour Inn was gorgeously restored. We paid for a street view, but were upgraded to a river view. The view alone was worth the $178 we paid per night. Our room had an upstairs bedroom, and a downstairs one as well. We were provided with Klondike bars, bottled water, and cotton robes at no extra cost. The valet carried in our bags, and made sure we were all set. The parking in downtown Savannah is expensive. Luckily, the Olde Harbour Inn provided 2- day parking for a mere $20. They also had an amazing full breakfast and evening wine and cheese party. They had sodas for us non-drinkers too. I highly recommend this Inn, if you are the historic/ boutique hotel type. I definitely am.
The Old Savannah Trolley Tour
Although we live close by, we had never truly explored historic Savannah previously. We took a trolley tour offered by Old Savannah Tours. There are 16 historic stops, and an 8 hour period where you can hop off and on the trolley at any of its designated drop-off/pick-up areas. It was only $44 per person for a 2-day pass. Most of the hotels in downtown Savannah are near trolley stops. We never had to use our car the whole time we were there.
Two of my favorite places we visited on the trolley tour were the colonial cemetery and Flannery O’Connor’s childhood museum. I read A Good Man is Hard to Find in college, but never knew Flannery O’Connor was a woman, until a character actor dressed as the late Miss O’Connor jumped on board the trolley. She told us about the museum in her childhood home, so we hopped off at the next stop and took her museum tour for $8 each.
My husband was the only man in the group tour, and was a good sport as he scrunched himself under the low staircase to the second floor while all of us hens cackled at the tour guide’s literary jokes. If you love literature, you will enjoy that tour. Flannery’s short stories and novels are like southern, Catholic (that’s an oxymoron) versions of Tim Burton’s works. Her work is dark, but full of grace. With the my new revelation regarding the Catholicism/grace slant on her works, I plan to read some of her stories again.
The colonial cemetery was interesting. There were big, brick crypts that Civil War soldiers supposedly used for shelter after they dragged the colonial corpses out. The yellow fever sign made me sad. I can’t imagine living in this hot, southern climate with no air conditioning and yellow fever germs. The only bad thing about the colonial cemetery is the inability to read the gravestones. They are naturally very worn.
We ate lunch at the Pirates’ House, which has a fabulous southern buffet of sweet potato casserole, fried fish and chicken, squash casserole, mashed potatoes, macaroni, greens, and hash. My husband was most impressed with the greens that contained hot sauce. I do not like dark greens, and definitely don’t use hot sauce, so I didn’t even take a sniff of those. The original Pirates’ House (1753) was an Inn for sailors, and had a tunnel through which pirates smuggled rum into the colony. Part of the current building was a small gardener’s hut, which is also the oldest building in Georgia (1734). You can read more about the Pirates’ House here. The original founder of Savannah, James Oglethorpe, did not allow hard liquor in the colony. Legends say Captain Flint, a fictional character from Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island, died in an upstairs bedroom of the Pirates’ House. His fictional ghost apparently still haunts this old pirate Inn. We’ll have to go on the ghost tour to hear about that next time.
One of the more surprising stops on the historic Savannah trolley tour was St. John’s (John the Baptist) Cathedral. It is known as the Sistine Chapel of the South. I was amazed by the painted ceilings, stained glass windows, and statues. It was free to visit, but the church did accept (and suggest) donations.
At night we walked up and down river street, buying souvenirs and looking at the gorgeous view of the river. As usual, I bought his and hers coordinating souvenir t-shirts. Walking in downtown Savannah is divine, especially if you like overhead live oak tree arches, dripping with Spanish moss. We also walked to Levi Jewelers on Broughton Street, to have my wedding ring sized. My ring must have shrunk over the years-just kidding, my finger is fatter. Andy kept my ring overnight while his talented jewelers added gold to take my ring from a size 6 to a size 7. He only charged us $116. The results were priceless! I’m overjoyed with my “new” ring.
Although this was the third little trip we’ve taken without any kids, our visit to historic Savannah was the one I enjoyed the most. It does take time to reorient yourself, especially if you’re a woman, to doing things as a couple (rather than as a family) again. Our family vacations are usually spent at amusement parks. I hope we can take a little “couples” trip on our anniversary every year from now on. Next time I do want to bring my dog though. ?
I hope you enjoyed reading about our trip to historic Savannah on our 30th anniversary!
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