Appreciate the Journey, the destination is secondary


One of the things I love the most about living in SC is the scenery but also the history of the area.  I moved here from NH which also had a lot of history and historic places to visit but after living there so many years I felt that we had explored as much as we could.  Since moving here one of my favorite things to do is to take a drive out in the countryside and just look for places to explore.  On Sunday that is exactly what we did.  We took Lily, our beagle/lab and also had to take our cat, Savannah since at the same time we were bug bombing the house, another aspect of SC that I don’t love but is very necessary, so we had to be away for at least 2 hours while those bombs did their job in the house and in the attic space.  We ended up out in the Ravenel, SC area.  The part I love the most is not having a specific destination but just to enjoy the journey and see where it leads.  I have always had the best times this way and not from a completely planned excursion.  I am actually really bad at advanced planning, it stresses me out, I just want to enjoy the journey and each place or thing I encounter along the way.  First we walked in the woods and to my surprise there in a swampy area was an entire bird bath base all alone out in the woods not near anything, well of course, I knew this meant that it was mine and meant for me to find out there.  I took these pictures of the scenery of the marshy, cypress and great white heron filled areas.

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We also managed to find 3 separate abandoned buildings. This one was definitely someone’s home and maybe even not that long ago judging from the outside appearance.  The windows were boarded up and there were “no trespassing” signs.  What struck me the most about it were the things left behind on the back porch, a chair, a broom, window shades, even the mailbox.  It made me wonder what happened?  Someone cared about this home at one time, where are they now?

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This one looked like a very old, partially collapsed house but once I looked inside the broken windows, I found that it was filled with church pews and even an old piano.  The thought that people used to congregate here in fellowship juxtaposed with it’s current state of complete abandonment was not lost on me and I found it to be very poignant.  Where did they go?  Why did they leave it?  Unanswered questions……..  but I saw through the disrepair and appreciated the beauty of it as it is right now in it’s current state even with the grape vines growing on the inside of the building around a window.

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These pictures are of the last abandoned building we found. I have to admit that even getting out of the car and approaching it made me feel fearful and apprehensive but it was also exhilarating. I cannot tell what it was when it was an inhabited structure.  It looked like it might have been a church, it was very large inside and had 2 rooms separated with pocket doors so it could be opened up into one huge room or be used as 2 smaller ones.  One side had a small structure with 2 doors that almost looked like it might have been a confessional although I have to say Catholicism is not a very predominant religion in this area.  The floor was almost completely covered in very decayed books, when I touched them, they were crumbling.  Some were children’s books of bible stories but there were also many magazines.  I was most fascinated by the old doors with their old doorknobs still in place.  Thinking about when they were used regularly so long ago and again the question, why was it abandoned?  How long ago?  A very long time, as far as I could tell.  The windows were almost all broken and parts of the floors collapsed so that I could look down and see into the crawl space underneath with it’s dirt floor.

original outhouse!

original outhouse!

side exterior view

side exterior view

interior windows with flash

interior windows with flash

love this door hardware and the door itself

love this door hardware and the door itself

without flash, much creepier

without flash, much creepier

2 front doors

2 front doors

hardly visible from the road

hardly visible from the road

a tree fell, did anyone hear or notice it?

a tree fell, did anyone hear or notice it?

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We can never know the answers to how or why they ended up like this but if you really take the time to look around these kinds of places are everywhere and have a certain special beauty even in their disrepair and decay.  At one time, they were active places where people congregated, socialized, studied and just lived their lives.  Maybe it’s the thought that the only thing we can ever count on in life is change.  Everything around is in a constant state of movement and change, I guess that is what makes life so interesting.  Those changes are what create history, we will all be part of history someday, it’s the impression we leave behind that is so interesting.  I look forward to my next exploration with much anticipation, you never know where a day will take you!  As always, thanks for reading.

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