Monday, November 3, 2008

Pluff Mud & Oysters - Ya'll Can't Get Any Better Than That!

Bowen's Island
Along this small tidal creek near Folly Beach, there is a small shack where folks have come for years in order to have real fried seafood and freshly steamed oysters. We decided to take the hike over on Saturday night. Through the years, people have questioned the fact that I have never left this beautiful area. In all honesty, I don't know if I could ever find somewhere more peaceful and tranquil as this. It's the smell of pluff mud and salty air that has instilled that Southern way of life long before I knew how to appreciate it or even what it meant.

Off to Bowen's Island for All You Can Eat Oysters! Make no mistake that this place is the "newer" of the buildings that has been rebuilt since the "older" one caught fire a year or so ago. I tried to take as many pictures as I could without looking like a tourist (which there was plenty of). The locals, like myself, walk right up because we KNOW what to do, and the tourists wander around trying to figure out what in the world they have gotten themselves into.

This is the small building where you place your order. Placing your order consists of telling the gentleman behind the counter your last name and what you want to eat and drink. The menu is hand written on a piece of notebook paper and stuffed into a sheet protector. You do not pay then. You only pay when you are finished and they accept Cash Only. You are given a hand towel, oyster knife and an old Gatorade bottle filled with hot sauce for dipping, then sent on your way to tell Henry (the tall, thin, older, black gentleman that has been there for 20+years) that you ordered oysters. You find a table with a hole in the middle to toss your shucked shells in and have at it!

This is the Oyster Room. Within 20 minutes, this place is so full, you can't move! Henry always remembers where you sat and he literally shovels the heaps of oysters on to your table until he sees that the pile is dwindling down.

We ate more than our money's worth. In the far right hand corner, you can see the bottle of hot sauce. There is really no wait staff. If you want another beer, you have to walk up to the small window and he grabs one out of the cooler for you. Your other option is to bring your own which some folks did. The selection is very limited as you can see from the Miller Lite can on the table.

When the air is cool and the oysters are hot, you can't get any better than that!

Over the years, the owners have encouraged everyone to write a sentiment on the walls and tables of the buildings. Before the old building caught on fire, you could hardly find a space to write because of the markings that had accumulated for decades past. This is the outside of the main room.
Here is the sunset that appeared.

This is what coastal living is all about.

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