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When Life Gives You Lemons, Make Lemon Rice

We left Charleston, S.C. yesterday, traveling only 25 miles before engine problems occurred. The motor stalled several times before completely dying. Gary changed the three fuel filters that are on our Westerbeke diesel engine and it still would not start. By the time we called Tow Boat US (like AAA motor club for boats) it was too late in the day for them to tow us anywhere, so we anchored for the night in the ICW. This is a first for us, anchoring right on the ICW. Usually, we get off the major waterway into a charted anchorage. Obviously, that was not an option last night. However, where the motor stopped, the river was quite wide and we were able to get to the edge of the channel and drop the anchor, thereby positioning us out of the way of any boat traffic. The wind was calm all evening and we were far enough away from the ocean that the current was not bad. All in all, if we were going to have a breakdown, the spot was ideal. The sunset was one of the prettiest we have seen. How could we complain? Yep, God watches over idiots and children. Even the extremely cold night did not damper our spirits, and we slept well as the anchor held tight throughout the night.

The tow boat was to pick us up at 9:30 this morning and he showed up exactly on time. We had a smooth seven mile tow, back to the north to Wadmalaw Island, to a marina where they could work on the engine. As luck would have it, (we believe it’s the Big One upstairs) the marina specializes in Westerbeke engine repair, which is not always easy to find, even in larger cities. Gary was able to purchase replacement filters for the ones he used, and the mechanic not only fixed the engine, he also changed the oil, which was needed as well.

As I said, we had a smooth ride to the marina, enabling me to start a batch of cookies. By the time we got to the marina, the batter was ready and I baked them once we were docked. The recipe I used is my own. I call them Jean’s Healthy Cookies which is an oxymoron, I know. I figure they are healthier than a lot of other recipes that’s all butter, white flour and sugar. If anyone wants the recipe, e-mail me at and I’ll send it to you when I have WiFi availability.

As you can probably tell, we love to eat good food, and I love to cook and bake. I like to take a recipe and make it my own by changing ingredients to fit our tastes. Tonight I made Lemon Rice using Carolina Gold Rice purchased in Charleston, and Grilled Spice-Rubbed Pork Tenderloin. If you want those recipes as well, just ask. Gary and I both like to cook and when we perfect a recipe to our liking, we put it in our special cookbook. Our friend, Alice Snellenberger, said when we die, she wants the cookbook. We take that as a compliment.

The people who work at the Rockville Marina, which is where we are right now, are very nice and accommodating. We asked what was in the area and we found out there is a tea plantation near here, the only one in the United States, and a winery. They said we could use their pick-up truck to drive to the winery which is about 10 miles from here on the island. Our plan was to go to the winery and then stop by the tea plantation on the way back to the marina. We didn’t get to go to the tea plantation because they closed before we got there, but the Irvin-House Vineyards were worth the trip. The grapes used for the wine at this particular winery are muscadine grapes and they are the only grapes that will grow in this area of the country, and they actually are indigenous to this area and grow wild here. The muscadine grapes are touted as having seven times more “Resveratrol” (an organic molecule that’s a powerful antioxidant) that’s suppose to be good for lowering cholesterol levels. Since Gary and I are on cholesterol meds, we thought we should buy a couple of bottles for medicinal purposes. It tastes pretty good, too….

The drive to the winery, in itself, was very special. Seeing the “low country” in the middle of nowhere, was a treasured experience. Viewing century old oak trees with Spanish moss hanging from their boughs, is worth the motor breaking down and the tow to this enchanted land. We would have never come here on our own accord, and we are thankful for the opportunity to be here. 


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