If you ask me now who was my favorite teacher in school, the first one that pops out in my head is – the history teacher. Of course she wasn’t the only one, I got along with all me teachers, liked them all, my mother was one of them after all! And I love my mom, not only as a mother, but as a teacher as well, she is the best, but when it comes to my history teacher it’s different. She build my passion and love for history and legends. Or was it the opposite way? The fact that I love history so much, made me like her too?
Anyway, my point is, that I love history, legends, myths and all these secrets related to actual people that walked on earth or heaven. You may say that they are not related to each other, but for me- they sure are.
So, stating that, my special person made me a surprise and arranged a short trip to the oldest continuously occupied European-established settlement and port in the continental United States – St. Augustine, FL.
What can I say, it was amazing. (And forgive me in advance if I will use this word way too much… 🙂 ). The city is not that far from where we live, it’s like 1.5 hours, but he rented a hotel room, to stay over night, meet some friends, have a good time. Goal achieved !
We checked in at noon, and went to discover the stunning city, that already gave me chills – So much history in just a few square miles….
We started with the fort, On the edge of the ocean, it’s like a big warning sign-be aware! It has the spirit of history, the spirit of the people that lived, fought and died there, for what they believed it was the right thing! It wasn’t a good weather and the right day, but as I understood, the people on the fort organized a whole act with actual soldier in the costumes from that time frame, sitting proudly at their posts.
Then right on the other side of the road is the rest of the St. Augustine jewelry!
Its like a gap in the middle of the city, where time is not changed! Literally, it’s a square plaza where are still the gift shops and the restaurants that hints to that era, and on the walls of the buildings, are small posters that informs you about this place, with maps, places and personalities.
The first thing that caught my eye was the Oldest Wooden Schoolhouse. It is touted as being the oldest wooden school building in the United States, first documented in tax report in 1716. It was weird to me to see it all surrounded in a huge steal chain. Why? Than I found out that that chain there prevents the building to be blown out by a hurricane. Yes, seams incredible, but that how it is.
Than we went to a gypsy place. You might ask me what is a gypsy store doing there? Well, I’m from a country with a lot of gypsies, and even if there are a lot of rumors about them and from where they are coming from, nobody really knows. I noticed a lot of similarities between them and a mix of Spanish/Latino/indian traditions, and at that time, St Augustine was a colony of the Spanish crown before the British took it over.
Then I had a glimpse of the Pirates of the Caribbean 🙂 not a joke, I saw the Black Pearl… we’ll it may be not really The Pearl, but sure it looked like it. It was a ship from the seventeenth or sixteenth century anchored to the shore. I assume it was from the conquistadors era, when Spanish and some of the European nations where the masters of the ocean to find new lands. The ship gave me chills, it was like a ghost boat that appeared between the new modern boats and yachts next to the shore line.
As you can guess already, there were also a lot of Spanish places, food and stores around. Everything made it seem more real and more close to the seventeenth century. An we were getting hungry 🙂 our friends already arrived and met with us, and now we needed to find a good place to eat. Even if in the sixteenth century there were no phones and internet, we used yelp to find a good restaurant in the old St Augustine. It was Catch 27, a place with only a few tables, if I remember well – 6 tables. That shouldn’t tell much about the restaurant, cause the food was out of this world.
It was a great time spent with friends and maybe with some of the ghosts from there that were having fun with the tourists every nights !