You'd think after several days of waking up at 7:00 and making a beeline to the beach for the sunrise, I'd get tired of it. Nope. :)
This morning was particularly colorful.
The pre-sunrise colors were so spectacular, the actual sun coming up above the horizon was anti-climactic. I took a few last shots of the red sky and purple water before heading back to our campsite.
At 8:00, Paul joined me and we drove south down to Georgetown. We were picking up fresh shrimp for this evening's Low Country Boil (a Linda/Howard suggestion). It was a bit out of the way, but the Independent Seafood Market was recommended, and I liked Trevor the minute I spoke to him on the phone. Plus, they were less expensive than the seafood markets around Murrells Inlet.
With a passenger, the seventeen-mile drive went quickly and we arrived at the dock in Georgetown.
I was prepared to buy 12 pounds of extra large shrimp, but Trevor convinced me that we would only need 10 pounds for our Low Country Boil. He provided some helpful advice, and even gave me a recipe for the three pounds of fresh grouper I bought.
All the other ingredients had already been purchased, but we still needed something to cook in. We ended up getting some big stock pots at Walmart and were ready to go.
Back at the park, Linda, took a long walk with some of the other gals, while I uploaded photos and wrote the Journal entry.
When Linda returned, we, along with Dee, walked over to one of the Huntington Beach State Park attractions - Atalaya, the winter home of Archer & Anna Hyatt Huntington.
Some refer to Atalaya as a castle, but it looks more like a fort. It's not really our kind of thing, but it was interesting and the $2 admission price was worth it.
We arrived for the 2:00 guided tour, but after standing too long in one spot too many times, the three of us abandoned the tour and explored on our own.
There are enough signs and narratives in the various parts of the "house" to get a really good feel for the uses of the rooms and outdoor areas without tagging along on the guided tour. Of course, if you want more detail without all the reading, you can take the guided tour or rent headphones for $6 for a self-guided audio tour.
An internet search on Atalya will bring up informational web pages on the home (built in the early 1930s), and the Huntingtons. There's a lot to the story, but I'm not up for writing all of it here. :)
At 4:00, we were all to meet near the park visitor center by the big Adirondack Chairs for a group photo. Of course, several of us couldn't resist getting individual couple shots. :)
Once everyone arrived, some kind rangers snapped our group pictures with several cameras.
We didn't make it easy on oursevles to identify everyone as almost all the couples were separated. :) But let's see if we can put names with the faces from the far left and going right head by head.
Jim, Selene, Judy, Jim, Howard, Hank, Terri, Kris, Linda, John, Paul, Ray, George, Ginny, Laurie, Dee, Nancy, Mike, Marti, Neil.
Back at the campsites, we set up two Coleman stoves and started three big pots of water, chicken broth, salt, and Old Bay seasoning to boil.
The ladies cut up onions, red potatoes, corn, and smoked sausage to be added at various intervals according to the recipe.
Once some more seasoning was added and we gathered everyone around for dinner, we dipped out a bowl of stew for those that can't eat shellfish. Then we turned off the heat and added the shrimp to each pot where it cooked perfectly.
Soon we were dipping the concoction out into serving trays and bowls and digging in.
With a little Old Bay to season to taste, some cocktail sauce, and lots of napkins, we enjoyed our feast.
It was as good a meal as you'll find anywhere for about $7 a person. :)
We could have added a little more sausage, and a used a little less corn, but for our first attempt at a Low Country Boil for twenty people, I think it worked out quite well.
Some of us still had room for dessert, and then we all pitched in to clean up, move tables, and get the fire perked up.
We once again sat around the campfire. Linda got a couple of games going on this Halloween night, including humming and guessing songs and going around the circle with each person adding to a "scary" story.
And with that, the tenth month of the year ended as we all headed back to our rigs for the night. It was all treats and no tricks for this group tonight. :)
Two more days left (for most of us) here at Huntington Beach State Park. Stay tuned to see what we get into next. :)