|The loose-leaf counter at the Savannah Tea Room.|
Our stay in Savannah was short -- just four hours in one late afternoon! Food became incidental from the start. We arrived at the hotel too early, and too hungry. The room would be ready in an hour, so we killed time by having lunch at the Popeye's across the street (the only food option in walking distance, unless you count the gas station's grocery store). It was a meal of convenience: I had beans and rice, half a biscuit, and nothing else (the green beans were not available and I later learned they are spiked with ham, so no loss). I am surprised by how well I tolerated this "fast food" meal.
|Arrival at Savannah. Quick lunch while our rooms were being prepared.|
A few hours later, we drove to the river's edge and spent the rest of the day wandering the city. Being the only person on the planet who has not read or seen Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, I did not have to visit the story's sites; instead, I walked from square to square, getting all mesmerized by the dreamy atmosphere. (I wound up getting a copy of The Book at a consignment shop, just $14 for a hardcover First Edition.)
SAVANNAH TEA ROOM -- A MECCA!
I had my own list of "must see" places, including the Savannah Tea Room. I was thrilled to find it, and left with five bags of excellent loose-leaf tea. I have been enjoying the Oolong varieties with no trigger effect, further demonstrating that Oolong tea seems to be a safe tea for my GERD. (Great news, since it is my favorite tea, next to Puerh!) I'll see how the black flavored teas do -- I was not sure if these were good choices given my flare-ups after regular black teas, but they smelled so compelling. Almond cookie! Quince! Here are the teas I brought home:
- Emperor's Bride -- A flavored herby, fruity tea (not yet tried); the tea house favorite.
- Puerh -- fermented, aged tea; my favorite variety though I have not yet tried this one (too busy with the oolongs!). The aroma is stunning.
- Big Red Robe -- An Oolong; I have been drinking this a few times a week; easy on my guts
- Pouchong -- Between an Oolong and Puerh; another regular tea in my rotation now which I can drink without concern -- never a trigger; I never heard of this tea before the Savannah Tea House. I will have to mail order this one! (See a review of this tea on the Tea and Talk blog.)
- Tessa's Almond Cookie -- Not yet tried, another fantastic smelling black tea blend.
|The famous "Forrest Gump" square.|
In planning the trip, a Savannah highlight was supposed to be a trip to the Sentient Bean, a vegan cafe/bistro/art space with impressive reviews. However, it was located at the far end of Forsythe Park, too long of a walk from where I reunited with my travel party. Another case of "ideal" meets reality, as we were all hungry and exhausted, and starting to get irritable. We plodded around for a few blocks, not agreeing on where to eat -- locavore hot spot? Irish pub? al fresco touristy Italian? quiet diner? loud burger joint that had "housemade" veggie burgers and walls covered with dead alligators? The Paula Deen restaurant got us all excited, but the line was too long.
So, deflated, we slunk into a Panera's Bread and just ate a bunch of dull, dried out paninis. My choice was the "tomato and cheese" panini, a disappointment but at least it was a small portion.
If only I had read Eat & Talk's blog entry on vegan food in Savannah before the trip…!
SECRET TRAVEL WEAPON: OATMEAL
As the days and trip went on, I relied more and more on oatmeal (or grits) for my morning meal. I found it was a GERD-pleasing, filling option in a sea of factory farmed eggs, butter-rich baked goods, and trays of morning meats. It was especially uplifting to find house-made oatmeal, but even instant packages were welcome. (We packed a carton of these in our travel food stash, as well.)
Here is my breakfast bowl the next morning, courtesy of our Savannah lodging: apple-cinnamon oatmeal with some strawberry jam I blended in. Next stop, Florida!
|Life is like a box of chocolates...|