Charleston, SC

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Moriah and I have been friends for more than a minute.

Once upon a time (before I was a jerk and got a boyfriend), we both moved out of our respective family homes when we were teenagers and got our first adult apartment together. This was so we could begin “real life.” We navigated challenges and stresses, survived car crashes and college drama, juggled old relationships and new ones, and danced through both success and failure. We’ve been friends through a whirlwind of change and a maze of ups and downs, somehow managing to still care about what stories the other has to share for the day.

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I’m not about to make this into some sappy best friend post (we’d both rather die than see that) so let’s just cut to the chase: Moriah is one of the most loyal people I know. She has been willing to put up with me and stick with me despite discouragement and my own indifference, heartlessness, and absent-mindedness. We’re both capable of learning a lot from each other, and we have learned a great deal, but her enduring faithfulness to our friendship is perhaps her most hard-won accomplishment (spiritual gift?).

There.

Now I’m all done with saying nice things.

We visited Charleston, South Carolina one summer because Moriah wanted to go somewhere and Rainbow Row is just a really good idea. We (she) found an Airbnb (if you haven’t heard of it, now you have. It’s a place to find lodging cheaper than your average hotel. I was wary of it at first [the idea of staying in people’s spare apartments/homes/basements sketched me out] but our experience was flawless–except for the part where I locked my keys in the house at 5AM on the morning we were leaving and we had to ring the doorbell until our host woke up [sorry]. Don’t do that and you’re all setđź‘Ť).

20170729_134007.jpgWe’d planned out a couple of things to see (the aquarium, Rainbow Row, a beach), but mostly we just pointed ourselves in the generally correct direction, followed our GPS, and explored.

It was hot, we were sweaty, we went to an art exhibit and crowded around their A/C vents, we went in the ocean, we walked the city, we saw horse-drawn carriages, we crossed the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge, we held starfish and pet sharks. It was an enjoyable trip to an interesting place with cool things done. Who wouldn’t enjoy that?

Things I learned:

  • Airbnb is totally legit. (Check out our link to get $40 off your next Airbnb purchase!) I was so unbelievably weirded out by the idea of staying in someone else’s home (some Airbnbs are more private, with a private entrance, bathroom, etc., but some are not. You get what you pay for, and the deals are broad in most areas). But we never even saw our host (until we woke her up at 5AM [again, sorry]), we had plenty of privacy, and it was much cheaper and more convenient than a hotel. You do you, though, obviously.
  • Aquariums are expensive, but they’re really the coolest thing ever. I now care about saving sea turtles and I’m itching for another opportunity to pet a shark.
  • If you plan your trip out beforehand, you’ll see more and do more. This one’s probably common sense, but if you know what you want to see, when you’ll see it, and how you’ll get to see it before you’re in the new place, then it’s much easier to see a lot and do a lot. Cut “researching time” out of your trip and just go where you already know you want to go.
  • South Carolina is unreasonably hot and humid in the summer. I’m not exactly a Northerner, I’m not exactly a Southerner–but good gosh, you sweat by just stepping outside there.
  • Downtown Charleston is a cute, historical town and you’ll certainly see something new every time you go. There are lots of random things to see, streets to walk, markets to wander, and people to encounter. Be sure to take your camera and don’t forget to admire the architecture (also, the ocean is really close. That’s a nice plus).
  • Be sure you walk the downtown boardwalk. Just walk the town in general.
  • Don’t take real friends for granted and notice loyalty when you see it. These things are rare. That’s all.

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