What a fun night. Got to go with some of my classmates to a very cool French cafe, and then we went to the musical Avenue Q at the Dock Street Theatre in downtown Charleston. My classmates and I shared a box right above stage right, and it was great to see down into the pit where the orchestra was. I had a clear view of the clarinetist who reminded me of my brother, Tim, who still plays clarinet for the orchestra at our church back home. It was fun to finally see Avenue Q for myself, especially after hearing references to so many of the songs from my college roommates who saw it together, but who I didn’t join, probably for some poor reason (like studying), however important it may have seemed at the time. I’m really trying to focus on enjoying Charleston and while still prioritizing my studies and maintain a perspective on what’s most important.
I also had a chance to see Act of Valor, and it was…pretty disappointing. Poor cinematography all around and a plot and script that just left you feeling like it totally lacked depth. Some of the technology (especially the submarine) was cool, but that didn’t make up for the rest of the movie that felt more like a recruitment advertisement than an actual movie with a story line. The producers had so much potential, and I wanted to like the movie so much because of all the men and women it portrayed who deserve our utmost admiration for the sacrifices they’ve made, but the movie just didn’t do them justice.
What an great birthday. I had an awesome time with some of my classmates downtown in Charleston. We went to the Patat Spot for some falafal and then checked out the Charleston night life. We ran into two bachelorette parties and won them over rocking some awesome bow ties – classy but unique. We got to dance with the bride-to-be and had some fun twirling her around on the dance floor. I also received some great birthday cards and a few unexpected treats – baked goods sent priority mail from home and some homemade cookies from my neighbors! What a blessing to have such great friends and family in my life.
It’s tough to describe all the awesome experiences this week. I had a significant amount of time to explore the Charleston area, and I’m very thankful to Jim for showing me around and entertaining me with tales from his past the entire way. From the details of flying charter flights for Bob Hope, George H.W. Bush, and the former governor of SC Mark Sanford to reminiscing about his time flying for the Air Force to his dealings with thwarting potential miscreants with his firearms to his NASCAR exposure and opportunities to interact with Dale Earnhardt Sr. and Jr. as well as other prominent drivers…there were some good stories. The cuisine we got to share over the meals was great as well…including Sticky Fingers, Texas Roadhouse, Smokey Bones, Manny’s Neighborhood Grille, TJ’s Beef & Brew, O’Charley’s, and Bighorn. I really enjoyed some local “Low Country” specialties including alligator and shrimp and grits. I’m so grateful to have had this opportunity before school starts next week.