Richmond, Virginia


Murals and street art have definitely become a thing.  Or maybe it was always there, and I’ve just become very attuned to it. Drive or walk around Richmond and the murals are everywhere. When I went to Mamma J’s for dinner, I had to wait to get a table. While waiting, I walked around the area.  At every turn there … Read More

Charlotte, North Carolina

Nascar Racing

When in Charlotte do as the locals do—go to the Nascar Hall of Fame.  Nascar (stock car racing) is THE sport in North Carolina.  While it isn’t something I’ve ever been to, I’ve long wanted to go to a Nascar race, as a slice of American life I felt it was something important to experience. Somehow, I never got to … Read More

Charleston, South Carolina — Day Three

Geechee Gullah Interpreter

Much of today was spent at the Boone Hall Plantation. The property is gorgeous, every inch of it filled with history—some very sad, much quite unexpected and all of it thought provoking. Here are a few of the things I learned: The owners of Boone Hall and most other plantations in the area never lived on the property.  Instead, they … Read More

Charleston, South Carolina — Day two

View from formal garden at Middleton Plantation

The forecast was for rain, not as intense as last night, but intermittent showers all day.  What to do?  Well, breakfast first at Poogan’s Porch, the oldest restaurant in Charleston. To make it even better, Poogan was a rescued dog. I went for well-made grits and, a splurge, a biscuit. It was well worth the splurge. Leaving the restaurant, the … Read More

Charleston, South Carolina – Day One

Horse drawn carriage in front of Charleston mansion

The last time I was in Charleston immediately after hurricane Hugo (1989).  My father was living here, and I came down to help him pack up and move—the devastation from the storm was so bad he could no longer live in his home. Every roof tile was blown off and then it poured, creating a near river pouring onto his … Read More

Wilmington, North Carolina

Live Oak with Spanish moss

Wilmington, NC is definitely not to be confused with Wilmington, Delaware.  The Delaware city is home to many large banks and during my many business trips there was all about business. The North Carolina Wilmington is brimming with southern charm and operates at a leisurely pace. The first stop this morning was to the Airlie Gardens. It was closed throughout … Read More

Norfolk, Virginia (day 2)

Street Art

Today was a long but very satisfying day. I’d read that Norfolk has an arts district, “NEON,” and that it had a lot of murals and street art. That I could not miss. It surpassed my expectations—it covers a large area, with artwork by lots of different people and in many different styles.  I’d walk and think I’d reached the … Read More

Norfolk, Virginia

Mermaid Sculpture

While in Baltimore we had two iconic meals.  At the Crafty Crab Sue had blue crabs and I had crawfish (I’m allergic to crabs).  This morning we had a fabulous breakfast at Miss Shirley’s Café.  When we arrived there was no line, but by the time we were leaving there was a LONG line.  We understood why. Today should have … Read More

American Visionary Art Museum, Baltimore, Maryland

Today was the first day of a road trip heading south.  Baltimore is a city with many charms. But for me the place I must visit every trip here is the American Visionary Art Museum (AVAM). The museum exhibits the work of largely unknown, untrained artists.  This is the art I collect, so to have gallery after gallery of whimsical, … Read More

New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival 2003

Jazz Festival Poster

My friend Kim had use of an apartment in New Orleans’ French Quarter and invited me to attend the Jazz Festival with her. Off I went, anticipating great music, fabulous food, enthusiastic crowds, and heat. Correct on all counts. What I hadn’t imagined were the cooking demonstrations, local crafts (think voodoo), and other activities. The festival was so expansive it … Read More