4.42 | Monday, Aug. 20, 2012
:: FEEDBACK: Send us a letter
:: SPOTLIGHT: Rural Mission
:: CALENDAR: This week ... and next
:: THE LIST: 5 stress busters
:: QUOTE: On laziness
WHERE IS IT?
IN THE GARDENS OF FRANCE -- Just like any ordinary job, I'm working full time: Monday through Friday, eight o'clock(ish) to five o'clock(ish) ... okay, so maybe most jobs aren't as flexible as this one.
Workday tasks involve anything and everything related to the garden. Within the formal gardens, there are four terraces each with a unique design. Beyond the formal gardens, you'll find the orchard filled with plum, cherry and apple trees, as well as the rose garden adjacent to the chapel. The chapel, once used by monks, has been renovated and restored. Thus far, I have assisted in trimming beds surrounding over 30 different types of rose shrubs, pruning said roses, attending to all the plants in the greenhouse, tidying walkways throughout, shaping topiary hedges there is always something to do. (Brécy, June 22, 2012)
The countryside: While most people shy away from purchasing countryside properties, the [Wirth] couple decided to invest in Brécy and embark on what proved to be a rewarding, yet difficult journey. With all of the original archives destroyed, a mere framework of crumbling stone walls presented Monsieur with a challenging opportunity to create a design harmonious to the chateau. (Brécy, June 22, 2012)
Designed to a tee: Every inch of the 16 acre Brécy was designed. A clear axis bisects the chateau and connects the property boundary to the adjacent public road. It never ceases to amaze me how much thought went into every detail of the garden. Hills were made, trails were manipulated and hedges are pruned to create the most perfect vistas. Beyond the formal gardens are endless acres of outdoor rooms: orchards, play areas, vegetable gardens, courtyards, concert spaces and more to be determined. (Brécy, July 1, 2012)
Artichokes: Artichokes are everywhere: engraved in the architecture, embroidered on the cloth napkins, printed on the wallpaper. Legend has it that this particular vegetable, a concentration of leaves, remains a symbol of God. Each leaf representing a person, growing towards the heavens. (Brécy, July 1, 2012)
Not so lazy Saturdays: Whether it's trying something different at lunch or escaping the chateau for the afternoon, each day continually proves to be an adventure. Weekends, especially, are instant wildcards. Day trips to neighboring chateaus, explorations of new cities (Bayeux and Honfleur), tours of beautiful sculpture gardens, and visits to prominent landmarks of Normandy (Omaha Beach and the American Cemetery) have kept me preoccupied for the last couple of weekends. (Brécy, July 5, 2012)
Good day sunshine: It's amazing what a little sunshine can do for your psyche. The last three weeks have been wonderful, but not easy. What started out as light afternoon rain showers slowly evolved into mid-morning through late afternoon monsoons. Working through the cold rain and constantly attempting to understand what everyone is saying is exhausting. Nonetheless, I still feel comfortable here. (Brécy, July 9, 2012)
Bittersweet goodbye: The idea of starting over with a new family frightened me. Despite the challenging language barrier, I bonded with the Brécy crew. I felt safe there, and better yet, they responded positively to my odd sense of humor. And on that note, I knew it was time for change. Conversations in the garden and during meals were great, but the solitude was beginning to wear on me. (Brécy, July 17, 2012)
In the woods: No words can describe the feeling of exploring a forest of towering trees, with the sound of cascading waterfalls in the distance, because no words come to mind in the moment; you just take pleasure in how gorgeous your surroundings have matured over hundreds of years. It's divine. (Chateau d'Acquigny, July 25, 2012)
Impressions: I wish I could capture everything I see, smell, hear, taste, touch, in a photo. Like how crisp the air feels during twilight strolls. Or how the clear skies are lit each night by hundreds of glittering stars. Or even how the lingering aroma of freshly baked bread can haunt you for blocks. The tiniest details make for the most beautiful pictures and memories. (Chateau d'Acquigny, July 27, 2012)
Toss up: I can't decide which is more exhausting: a full day of working in the garden or an entire evening of trying to follow the conversations of old friends in French. It's a toss up. (Chateau d'Acquigny, July 30, 2012)
Medicinal garden: I've grown quite fond of the medicinal garden. It's an excellent educational tool. The majority of its plants are salvaged from all over the park. Not only does this part of the garden explain the individual benefits of each plant, but it also shows visitors how easy it is to turn unwanted plants into herbal remedies. (Chateau d'Acquigny, Aug. 11, 2012)
Deja vu: Occasionally, I experience a feeling that overwhelms me. Everything seems too surreal. It often occurs at dinnertime when the French is spoken fast and the speakers run through topics as if they were channel surfing. As my mind races to keep up, I suddenly become exceedingly aware of where I am, on various scales. (Aug. 14, 2012)
2012 -- Elections have always been nasty, but this year's presidential
contest may be the nastiest ever. That's not good for our country.
because President Obama's team is fighting back more than usual -- something
not generally seen as intensely from Democrats. Maybe it's because Republican
candidate Mitt Romney is still having trouble defining himself and his
opponent. Maybe it's because style is beating substance. Maybe it's because
there are so many new communications platforms where it's easier to be
And Romney could say:
Democratic state Sen. Phil Leventis of Sumter thought neither candidate would be hurt if they acknowledged their opponent was bright, had family values and had accomplished a lot.
should acknowledge that Romney did a good job with the Olympics -- and
he ought to check his record [Romney's] because he probably did a pretty
good job as governor of Massachusetts for the people of Massachusetts,"
So, what's on your mind? So drop us a line and tell us what's on your mind or what's bothering you? Or send us other thoughts. We love getting input from you. If you have an opinion you'd like to share (150 words or less, please), send your letters to: email@example.com. We look forward to hearing from you!
AUG. 20, 2012 -- Synchronize your watches and your mouse-clicking fingers: We're just days away from the start of ticket sales for the 2013 BB&T Charleston Wine + Food Festival. Beginning at 9 a.m. Aug. 30, you'll have your choice of tickets for festival events, but have those credit cards standing by and be prepared to click quick-some events sell out in a matter of minutes. The full event schedule will go up on the festival Web site this Friday, Aug. 24. That gives you almost a week to map out your strategy and be ready to buy.
Festival organizers also have planned two events to celebrate the launch. The annual Ticket Launch Party, planned for 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Aug. 30, will have a laid-back, beachy feel thanks to the party's location, the Charleston Harbor Resort and Marina at Patriots Point in Mount Pleasant. Guests can get a taste (literally) of the upcoming festival by sampling dishes prepared by top local chefs, and Dub Island and the Dubplates will provide the music. Tickets are $40 per person and are available at the festival Web site.
The second launch event is new to the festival calendar. The Local Catch Cookout will be held from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.,Sept. 1, at the Charleston Harbor Resort and Marina's Lookout Pavilion. Participating chefs will catch the event's seafood offerings the day before during a daylong fishing trip in Lowcountry waters, and local seafood purveyors Clammer Dave and fisherman Mark Marhefka will also be contributing to the menu. The local chefs taking part include Jeremiah Bacon (The Macintosh), Sean Brock (Husk, McCrady's), Drew Hedlund (Fleet Landing), Mike Lata (FIG) and Frank Lee (SNOB), while guest chefs George Mendes (Aldea, New York City) and Frank Stitt (Highlands Bar and Grill, Birmingham, Alabama) will participate as well. Tickets are $75 per person - or get a ticket to both the Launch Party and the Local Catch Cookout for $100 per person (a $15 savings.) Tickets to both events are available here.
The public spiritedness of our underwriters allows us to bring Charleston Currents to you at no cost. This issue's featured nonprofit partner is Rural Mission on John's Island. The organization is many things to many people: a hand up in times of crisis and need a mission, service and faith volunteer experience for the young and older a caregiver and advocate for young migrant children and a support system for migrant families a provider of a warm, comfortable home in winter and a greatly appreciated giver of desperately needed home repairs to make low income homes safe, healthy and decent. For all, Rural Mission is a source of hope for low- and very low-income residents, the elderly and families living in the rural underserved Sea Islands of Charleston County, from Johns Island to Wadmalaw to Edisto and Yonges Islands. To learn more about this extraordinary organization, visit Rural Mission online. To talk to someone about giving your time or money to help, phone: 843.768-1720.
If you want to learn more about the history and life of Charleston's neighborhoods, you might want to check out one of the annual fall home and garden tours offered by the Preservation Society of Charleston.
Starting for a month on Sept. 27, self-paced walking tours will be held each Thursday evening from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. and on Friday, Saturday and Sunday afternoons from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m.
The tours feature beautifully-appointed gardens and architecturally-significant homes, churches and public buildings. Highlighting the best of American architecture from the early Georgian Period up to and including the 21st century, each tour shares a unique neighborhood that represents Charleston's flourishing culture from the Colonial era to the present.
Most of the properties on tour are privately owned and are open to the public exclusively for this event. Trained volunteer guides will interpret the history, architecture and decorative arts of each property.
That BIG Book Sale set for October in new location
The Charleston Friends of the Library will hold its 30th Annual That BIG Book Sale on Oct. 12-14 at the Omar Shrine Auditorium in Mount Pleasant. The sale is in a new location as its traditional location, the Gailliard Auditorium, will be undergoing a renovation.
On hand will be more than 60,000 books, DVDs, CDs, books on CDs and tapes, VHS, sheet music and maps -- with prices starting at just $.50. For the price of one movie ticket or one new paperback book, shoppers can walk out with a basket full of books, DVDs and CDs that they can enjoy over and over, or pass on to a friend. The event will also feature a rare book auction.
Charleston Ballet to offer seven performances in 26th season
From Dracula to Snow White, the Charleston Ballet Theatre will offer seven dynamic performances during its 26th season from October through April. Performances include:
Trident Health receives Heart Association award
Trident Health has received the American College of Cardiology Foundation's Get With the Guidelines (GWTG) Platinum Performance Achievement Award for 2012.
to a press release, the hospital obtained the recognition for its quality
care of Acute Coronary Syndrome (ACS), and is one of only 164 hospitals
in the nation to do so. Acute coronary syndrome is a term used for any
condition brought on by sudden, reduced blood flow to the heart and is
treatable if diagnosed quickly.
Malaria was arguably the most significant disease in the history of South Carolina from the colonial period until the early twentieth century. It attracted less public discussion than yellow fever and smallpox, but its impact in terms of morbidity and mortality was much greater.
yellow fever and smallpox tended to erupt in spectacular but short-lived
epidemics, malaria quietly and steadily eroded the lives and energy of
a large part of the population. The most common symptoms of malaria are
fever, chills, and aches. In classic cases spikes in the fever come at
regular intervals. Depending on the severity and type of case, malaria
may produce vomiting, severe headaches, jaundice, hemorrhaging, blood
clots, an enlarged spleen and renal failure.
is a parasitic infection caused by protozoa known as plasmodia
and transmitted by anopheline mosquitoes. Two types of malaria dominated
in South Carolina. Both are highly debilitating diseases that produce
lethargy and vulnerability to other infections. Plasmodium vivax,
which probably came with European settlers in the 1670s, is the less virulent
of the two forms. The introduction of the more deadly Plasmodium
falciparum came with the importation of large numbers of African slaves
in the 1680s and after. Many West Africans were immune to vivax,
and some had acquired or inherited resistance to falciparum. The
observations of planters and physicians of black resistance to malaria
helped give rise to the proslavery argument that blacks were peculiarly
adapted to labor in the southern climate. Nevertheless, many blacks suffered
severely from falciparum, as they still do in parts of Africa.
By the early eighteenth century, malaria was endemic in the Lowcountry. It continued to plague the region throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, and was a major contributor to the region's high mortality rates and reputation for unhealthiness. It was particularly dangerous to infants, young children and pregnant women. The severity of malaria was the result not only of the Lowcountry's semitropical climate and marshy topography but also of its plantation economy, particularly the cultivation of rice and indigo, which provided ideal breeding conditions for the anophelines.
late colonial period, the threat of malaria transformed many of the planting
families of the Lowcountry into seasonal migrants. They fled the plantations
during the summer and early autumn for locations perceived to be less
dangerous: the North, Charleston, the pinelands, the upcountry and the
seashore. During the nineteenth century malaria became a major health
problem in much of the state, especially in newly cleared and undrained
lands and along river valleys. It reached epidemic status on several occasions
during the Civil War and after. In the early twentieth century coastal
South Carolina was one of the most persistent hyperendemic pockets of
the disease in the country.
1930s parasite rates as high as 50 percent were not uncommon among schoolchildren
in rural areas, with the highest rates in the coastal counties. In the
early 1940s the construction of Santee Cooper hydroelectric dams produced
one of the last epidemics of malaria. In the rush to complete the project
in the face of war, the upper reservoir (Lake Marion) was not completely
cleared of trees. They impeded flow and provided excellent breeding grounds
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Five stress busters for your kids
With school getting into full swing, stress may increase in homes across the area. The S.C. Psychological Association suggests these healthy stress management habits at home:
Exercise is a natural stress reliever and increases the production of
good neurotransmitters called endorphins. Have your children devote at
least an hour per day to physical fitness and reinforce to them that everyone
needs exercise to keep healthy.
kids with extracurricular activities. Be mindful of your children's
after school activities and notice how these affect their schoolwork and
relationships with family, friends and teachers. Try to properly balance
their after-school activities and your own commitments to reduce stress.
"Blame is just a lazy person's way of making sense of chaos."
Yappy Hour: 4 p.m., Aug. 23, James Island County Dog Park. Rawberry Jam will provide live music as dog lovers meet for fun after a long day of work. You and your pup can mingle with friends until sunset. Beverages will be available for purchase. More online.
How To Train Your Dragon: Sunset, Aug. 24, Mount Pleasant Waterfront Park. The Town of Mount Pleasant and Charleston County Park and Recreation present the final free family film on the lawn on a giant inflatable screen. Not only is the film free, but so is parking. Drinks and snacks are available. More online.
(NEW) Children's Grape Stomp: Noon to 5 p.m., Aug. 25, Irvin-House Vineyards, Wadmalaw Island. There are a few slots left for the Children's Stomp, part of the 9th annual Grape Stomping Festival. Kids between 6 and 12 will be able to stomp grapes for prizes. Sign up by calling 843-559-6867 or emailing Becky Nisoff at firstname.lastname@example.org. Participation in the Children's Stomp is free, but teams must sign up prior to event. Festival is $10 per car. Learn more.
CALENDAR: ONGOING AND SOON
Book signing: 7 p.m. Aug. 30, Barnes and Noble, Towne Center, Mount Pleasant. Robert Leleux, author of The Living End a Memoir of Forgiving and Forgetting will have a book signing and talk on his January 2012 book on his grandmother's journey through Alzheimer's.
(NEW) The Last Flapper: 7:30 p.m., Sept. 7, 8, 10, 14 and 15; 3 p.m. matinee on Sept. 16, Park Circle (1080 East Montague), North Charleston. The South of Broadway Theatre Company will offer this one-woman show based on the writings of Zelda (Mrs. F. Scott) Fitzgerald following a successful January run. Tickets are $18. More.
(NEW) Shaggin' on the Cooper: 7 p.m. to 11 p.m., Sept. 8, Mount Pleasant Pier, Mount Pleasant. Coastrunner will offer live classic oldies and beach music as shaggers dance the night away. Only 800 tickets sold; cost is $10. For more on this and several other September events, go online to: www.ccprc.com
(NEW) Bubbly and Brew: 7 p.m. to 11 p.m., Sept. 28, Harborside East, Mount Pleasant. My Sister's House will present the 4th annual Bubbly and Brew fundraiser with champagne and lots of tasty food, as well as live music, a silent auction and a live auction. Tickets are $60 in advance, $75 at the door. More.
Bird walks: 8:30 a.m. to noon, every Wednesday and Saturday. This is the time of year that a great variety of migrating birds fly through the Lowcountry so what better time to take part in one of the regular early morning bird walks at Caw Caw Interpretive Center in Ravenel. Pre-registration is suggested. Cost is $5. Learn more online.
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