Possums, house gazing and cracked ribs 

Published 12:29 pm Thursday, June 20, 2024

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“the color of life 

takes sun yellow and bluest blue sky and water  

for green ferns 

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chartreuse buds beading above moss 

dappled shamrocks 

fragrant healing of sage, laurel, 

mint, basil, thyme, rosemary, myrtle 

amid the tall wonders of juniper 

pine, olive, pear…”

~ Raina J. León, excerpt from “making life on a palette” 


Imagine the Beverly Hillbillies packed in a white Prius. Then, Dear Reader, you might have an inkling of a trip I took to Charleston last week on a rain-soaked Monday. To add to the picture, envision a small possum riding shotgun on the passenger’s lap. 

I could not make this one up, so there you have it in a nutshell. I gotta add that I wasn’t quite expecting a possum to ride along, although she had her own pet carrier. She made no complaints, although I had a few choice words when we nearly got beaned by an out-of-control truck spinning wildly across three lanes of traffic; the first close call of the trip. Later, after touring Boone Hall Plantation (sans possum), it was a whirlwind of ocean, tea plantation and the Angel Oak, along with the first time of being served by a robot. (Why can’t I have one to make dinner, clean house, wash/wax car, haul things, and do everything I don’t want to do?) This particular robot was rather slow, and only brought one plate of food at a time. That’s not the one I’d want…

After departing possum and friends, I cruised over to Old Mount Pleasant to another friend’s house, where I knew a guest room awaited with my name on it. We spent time catching up, then headed out for our favorite spots around Charleston and the islands. One morning after parking near Charleston Place, we walked shaded back streets toward the Battery, peering in ornate iron garden gates to see what having extra money does with old houses and gardens. (Believe me, it helps!) 

Finally we strolled our way to the Battery Park area, live oaks and sparkling water, blue sky overhead, leaves whispering in sea breezes, discussing architecture, lunch ideas. All morning, I’d managed to navigate tree roots, uneven sidewalks, carriages, tourists, and sudden stops by others gawking at those fine houses and gardens. 

Murphy’s Law always kicks in, sometimes literally. If you’re going to do something, go big, right? Without warning, I dive-bombed my face to the ground like a ton of bricks, not even managing a graceful fall. 

Stuffing knocked out of me, it took a bit to gather the scrambled brain to access damage. Blood dripping from my face, oops. Rib fracture, ouch. Yet no bloody knees or broken nose or wrist. To make another long story short: after two bathroom clean-up sessions, groaning, a beer, air-conditioning and pain medicine, I said “It could be worse.” when we got back to the car. And you learn that friends who love you won’t run off hollering “call 911—some strange woman needs help back there!” when you’ve gone teakettle-over-spout, dripping blood like Frankenstein. 

Mercy, it hurt, and I looked like death-on-a-biscuit; but a cracked rib will mend, a bandage and black eye can be hidden under large sunglasses, and there was fresh seafood to be had up in McClellanville the next day. 


Saluda Community Table is June 25, 5:30-7 p.m. at Saluda Center. 

The next two Train Tales at Saluda Historic Depot and Museum are June 21 with Saluda native James Metcalf presenting “Little Known Tales of Saluda and The Grade”; and July 19 with professional photographer Jeffery Stoner speaking about “Photography and Trains”. 

Potluck/bingo night at Saluda Center is June 24, 6 p.m.

The next Top of the Grade Concert is July 12, 7 p.m. featuring Bob Sinclair and the Big Deals at McCreery Park.  

Coon Dog Day is July 6, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Thank you to all the volunteers who helped with the Historic Saluda home tours and all who came to support the cause! 

Happy June Birthday to Nancy Barnett, Bubba Dawson, Peggy Ellwood, Anna Jackson, Charlie Jackson, Amy Violet Ford, Terry Arrington, Julie Arrington, Susie Welsh Hearn, Jeremy Edwards, Eleanor Morgan, Mary Lu Price, Sigi Hendrickson, Edna McKee, Lucinda Pittman, Susan Matthews, Lisa Duck, Kasey Watkins, Elena Robson, Karen McGee, Jane Mann, John Matson, and Chambli Dawn Stuber. 


Feel free to contact me at bbardos@gmail.com, (828) 817-6765, P.O. Box 331, Saluda, NC 28773, Facebook, or visit bonniebardos.com