For those of you who are new to The Life of JWo, I write our “Travel Logs” each day when we go on vacation. This is Day 5 of our 2012 trip to Myrtle Beach. You can read my 2009, 2010 and 2011 logs by clicking on the year.
Tammy and I had been watching the track of Tropical Storm Beryl since before we arrived in Myrtle Beach and until today (Wednesday, May 30th) we had perfect weather.
But Beryl dumped storms on us late Tuesday night and early Wednesday morning and since it was sposed to be overcast the rest of the day we decided to go shopping.
We had already hit one of the outlet malls on Day 3, so we headed out to the other one which had the Nike Outlet.
What’s That Smell?
We parted ways almost as soon as we got out of the car and I headed over to the Nike Outlet where I tried on four different types of the shoes I was looking for, but didn’t fall in love with any of them.
I moved over to the Under Armour store and was checking out the clearance rack when I saw a rather large man approach. He stood a few feet from me and started looking through the clothes.
He had stopped for about 2 seconds when his smell caught up with him. His B.O. hit me so hard that I stopped looking at the rack and immediately looked over to see the smell was hitting him as well.
I lasted about three seconds before I tapped out and went to a different area of the store. About a minute later, Mr. B.O. was near me again so I moved to another area.
Next thing I knew he brought his foul smell to where I was standing. That’s when I decided to cut bait and head over to the store where Tammy was.
I couldn’t have people thinking it was me stinking like that.
You Know Where to Find Me
I left the store and headed over to Banana Republic store where I had last seen Tammy. Since she so short it’s rare when I can actually see her above the racks.
But even if I can’t see Tammy, I always know where to find her — at the back of the store.
I always walk straight to the back because I know Tammy will be there, picking through the store’s clearance racks.
She Gets to Ride the Special Bus
After the outlet we headed over to Barefoot Landing to do a little more shopping and were looking over the deck where people were feeding some of the fish.
I was taking pictures of the nasty creatures in the water when I saw Tammy looking at the couple who walked up next to us. Then I heard her talking.
Tammy: Look at all the fish. (waves her hand toward the water)
The people looked at the water a few seconds before moving on and that’s when I busted out laughing.
Me: (mocking Tammy) Look at all the fish. I have to wear a helmet when I ride the bus so I don’t lick the windows.
Tammy: Shut up. I didn’t know if they saw all of them because they were looking over there.
Me: Sure thing Short Bus.
C-Ya Later, Alligator
We walked to another side of the pier where a group of people were standing and pointing into the water at a baby alligator.
We spotted it and I ran back to my car to grab the camera so I could get some shots. By time I made it back he was gone. He had spotted the two grounds men who were trying to catch him and darted off.
We poked our heads into a nearby shop for a few minutes and when we came back outside the little fella was back in view.
We stood there watching the gator floating closer and closer to the land where two ducks, who had been swimming peacefully, were standing. They were looking down into the water and quacking at each other, never getting within 2-3 feet of the water’s edge.
The ducks would go down one side of the grass and the gator would effortlessly turn his body so he could keep his eyes on them.
The ducks eventually wandered far enough off that the gator couldn’t see them anymore but he stayed in the area, waiting patiently for them to come back. I don’t know if the ducks ever made it back because we left to hit more shops.
But all I could think about was how traumatized some of the little kids watching would have been had “Allie” had his way with the ducks.
Thank Ya, Thank Ya Very Much
Most of the shops we went into didn’t have much that interested me. But there was one store that had plenty of stuff that caught my eye.
The American Vintage shop had tons of old signs from Coke to John Deer to old gas stations. They even had on old car sitting right in the middle of the store.
There were giant statues of Elvis, Marilyn, The Blues Brothers and the Rat Pack set up near the ceiling as if they were watching over the shoppers.
They had a ton of cool shirts that I wanted to get and I know that Camaro Boy would have loved.
But there was one thing that grabbed my attention and wouldn’t let go, even after we had walked out of the store.
It kept gnawing at me so much that I texted my oldest and bestest friend Daniel to get his thoughts on it. Once I sent him the picture of the item(s) in question there was no doubt that I HAD to get them so we could use them the next time we see each other.
Out With the Old, In With the New
We left Barefoot Landing and headed back to the first outlet mall, the one without the Nike store. That mall had a Finish Line store that had the exact shoes I had been looking for over the past few years.
Tammy ran into one of her “woman” stores so I could get my shoes. The place was packed because the day was cloudy and they were understaffed. They had one person running the cash register and another running in the back to get shoes for men and women so I waited patiently for her to bring out my shoes.
I felt like Cinderella as I put them on because they felt great. I threw my “F(ree) Your Self” t-shirt into the purchase and headed outside where Tammy was waiting on a bench for me.
I’ve Got the Sticky Fingers
Anytime we go “down South” Tammy wants to eat bar-b-que because she knows it’s done so much better there than where we live.
We had passed a placed called Sticky Fingers that Tammy wanted to eat at. She had never forgotten how good the one was we ate at almost 10 years ago at my step-brother’s rehearsal dinner.
We decided to stop there for dinner tonight and it didn’t disappoint.
Our waiter, Sean, had long dreadlocks that held a “Legalize Cannabis” button so we knew we were in for fun.
He took our appetizer order and I headed to the bathroom to clean up before the food arrived. I was walking toward the bathroom and looking around at all of the stuff on the walls when I saw Sean turn around the corner with plates in his hands.
I stopped, stood on my tiptoes and braced for impact as he turned his head and body around, smashing into my stomach, causing the plates to crash into the floor.
I turned my head and looked over at Tammy with my mouth wide open.
Tammy: (mouthed) Was that YOU?
All I could do was nod.
I turned back to see all of the waiters/waitresses staring at me. I apologized to Sean and he did the same to me. I told him I saw him coming and stopped but couldn’t get out-of-the-way in time.
We laughed about it when Sean came back to the table and we ordered our food. He later told me the bartender saw it about to happen as well but didn’t say anything because he didn’t have time.
Sucker for Sauces
Sticky Fingers was having a promotion where one member of the staff had to wear a pink t-shirt until they sold a bottle of BBQ sauce. Sean brought a guy over to peddle his wares and we told him we’d have to wait until we got our food to make a decision.
It didn’t take long for Tammy to fall in love with the Carolina Sweet so we had Sean call “Pinkie” over so we could buy a bottle. Of course Tammy decided to have a little fun with him.
Tammy: I like seeing younger men take off their shirts so I guess I’ll get a bottle of the Carolina Sweet.
He brought over a bottle but didn’t take his shirt off until he was a safe distance away from Tammy.
A waitress wore the shirt next and it seemed like she had it on less than 2 minutes before it got passed on to Sean. The next time he came to the table we gave him an earful.
Me: What the hell man?
Tammy: Yeah? I’d rather have bought the sauce from you than from him. He didn’t even take off the shirt in front of me.
Sean: (laughing nervously) Yeah, I didn’t know I would be up so fast.
After we got our food I told Tammy I wanted to buy a bottle of sauce for me and to help Sean shed the pink shirt.
We called Sean over to give him the good news and he came back with my bottle of Tennessee Whiskey (I’m easing into my drinking whiskey thing). Once he put it down on the table he looked at Tammy.
Sean: Since you wanted to see me take my shirt off.
She clapped approvingly as he pulled this shirt over his head, laughing.
We had eaten our fill of food and told Sean we needed to-go boxes. When we had filled all of the boxes he asked if we something to carry it in.
Sean: I think I may have a baggie in here. (starts reaching in his apron)
Me: Whoa, man. We don’t need to do that here. How bout we do that out back instead?
He instantly knew what I meant and started laughing. It took Tammy a few minutes to realize what I was implying.
Why Is It Always the Good Ones?
All in all I’d say I had a great 39th birthday. The only down part of the day was when I talked to my Mom.
She told me my step-dad’s cancer has reached a stage that the doctors can’t do anything else, gave him about 2 months to live and suggested hospice care for him.
I knew he had been struggling with stomach cancer the past few months and had been in the hospital for a 2-3 weeks but I stood there in complete shock listening to the news.
I had already decided to go down to Tupelo to visit with him a couple of weeks after we get back, but now that trip seemed so far away. My mind raced, wishing I could be there with him and thinking about how I would handle news like that.
James has been in my life for over 20 years and I only wish I had been around him on a daily basis a lot more because I know I would have been a better person for it.
I’m looking forward to my trip to Tupelo but just thinking about it makes my heart hurt.
Happy Birthday to me.
Totals Miles Driven: 1,200.7