Researching South Carolina and the colonial era has produced some phrases that I just love. “When the bucks are in velvet” is one of them.
If you’ve never read Archibald Rutledge’s memoir, “Home by the River” — consider it. Beautiful prose describing a landscape the author so clearly loved. The place is Hampton Plantation, South Carolina and it’s where Eliza Lucas Pinckney spent her final years (excluding the brief stint in Philly where she went for cancer treatments at the end of her life).
Even from the road and barely visible through the tall grasses, you could see the plush surface of these antlers.
When the bucks are in velvet, saplings need protection, apparently, because of the fervor with which the deer will run their antlers across the small trunks — to the trees’ ruination.
Another phrase came from a book about North Carolina (mentioned on this blog before – links to follow) and describes one of the ways the enslaved supplemented their meager rations: “gigging for sturgeon” (that’s spear fishing, PS).
Well, not far from Denver we wandered into Pro Bass, a store so huge it makes Dicks Sporting Goods look like a 7-11. I saw my first sturgeon there on Saturday. Just at the base of the store’s central staircase, a huge fish tank housed one of these prehistoric-looking fish.
These things can grow to enormous sizes and live a long time (how’s that for precision?)
Here’s a video of an angler catching a seven footer in some tiny creek that looks like it could be along the Carolina coast. I watched half of it and it was a hoot.
This little lake (above) is two blocks from our Airbnb, while Boulder Creek (below) runs through town about three miles from here. In the 90+ temps, it was a very popular place yesterday.