East Bay Street extends down to the point of the Battery, but I’m starting these pictures from the spot where I got past Rainbow Row, headed in the direction of the Provost Dungeon, and eventually, the Market. Strangely enough, our advance down this end of East Bay Street began with window boxes, flowers, and a cat.
There were a lot of beautiful window boxes, full of colorful flowers, scattered all along the streets. Just as I was examining this particular one, the inner shutters opened, and a cat peered out at me. Well, I’m not sure how much he could see, because the sun was so bright, his pupils almost disappeared. But I could imagine this cat demanding why we were looking at HIS flowers.
Then, suddenly, he stuck his head (but not his body) back through the shutters, as if someone was calling to him. I figured they were telling him that it was okay for people to look at the flowers, and he was responding with, “Oh. Ok, well, fine then. They can just LOOK, but that’s all!”. I wasn’t the only passerby taking pictures of the cat, though I wish my camera hadn’t focused on the flowers. I had meant to get a good picture of the cat, with the flowers on the outer edges. He’s a bit blurry, as you’ll notice.
Shortly after that, we passed another building that I like which holds a jewelry store, but I’m much more interested in the ivy-draped brick and the cupboard-style wooden contraption built onto the front. I’m guessing that isn’t original, or maybe it’s a copy of an original design. It really does look like a wardrobe built onto the outside of the building, though.
The Provost Dungeon was next, but we didn’t go inside to look. I have been there many times, with my friends. There’s a lovely gift shop upstairs, but the tour takes you down below where they even have Pirates of the Caribbean ride-style robotic pirates that narrate some parts of the dungeon. Or was the parrot the narrator? It’s been a while. They really concentrate on the Revolutionary War era and the early years of Charleston, rather than on the Civil War.
We made a brief stop back at our parking garage, to exchange our heavier jackets for some lighter ones, as the sun was finally starting to warm things up. But if you got caught in the shade when the wind blew… ooh, it was chilly. But since we had parked on the roof of the garage, I was able to get some nice photos of the surrounding area, including a church steeple (I think) and the top of the Provost Dungeon.
The building with all the stable doors, I’m not sure what the building is, aside from being next to the garage, but I have some fun memories of a year when a friend and I took multiple photos of ourselves in those doorways. I really need to find those pictures.
I continued to take in more of the architecture of East Bay Street as we got closer and closer to the Market. One of them, the Southern Brewery, is not just an old brewery but a restaurant. We’ve eaten in there, and they have a huge old-fashioned brewing machine right in the middle of the restaurant. We had a wonderful time, on that visit (and again, I have pictures somewhere), but mostly I remember that being the last time a certain new friend was with us. Some of us were only just getting to know him, when he was shot and killed in Atlanta. Now, he’s playing cello in heaven, waiting for us to join him.
Most people are probably familiar with the S.N.O.B. shirts that people bring back from Charleston, just like with the A.W. Shucks shirts. But did you know where they came from? I’ve been by there many times, but I’ve still never been inside.
And last, but not least, right before reaching the Market, we walked past the United States Custom House of Charleston. It was started before the Civil War (prior to 1861), but not finished until after the war, around 1870. I always have the tendency to want to call it the State House, though I know perfectly well that the South Carolina State House is in Columbia. It has that look that most Capitol buildings do, whether in DC or in Columbia.
I believe the Custom House has quite an illustrious history, but I just realized that I’ve never been inside it. I suppose it’s because it is still used as a Custom House, and is not just a tourist attraction. There are probably tours inside, though, wouldn’t you think? Maybe we’ll find out and make that our next trip for “Mondays in Charleston”. I’ll have to mention it to my friends.