Shrimp boats, oyster boats, and fishing vessels ply the waters for the shellfish and finfish harvest that sustains the town. By some miracle, this part of Florida, nestled in the panhandle, has escaped the blight of development. Established as a seaport and fishing village in 1830, there’s really not a whole lot that’s changed in almost two centuries.
A Long Family History Here
My dad was born here, as was my grandfather. My grandparents were married in the Methodist church, the same church where my dad was baptized and my parents attend services now. My family lore includes the tale of my great-grandfather, who frequented the Oasis, the local watering hole. As the story goes, Granddaddy got mad one night and stormed out of the bar’s front door, thundering, “May God strike me dead if I EVER walk through this door again!” (Being a God-fearing man, from then on Granddaddy entered only through the side door.)
That was a long time ago, but the Oasis endures, as do most of the other buildings in Apalachicola. Walking around town, my dad remarked, “Everything is the same as when I was a kid—some of the buildings have been spruced up with a little paint and powder, but they’re all the same.”
At the Piggly Wiggly, the local grocery, the cashiers wear Piggly-Wiggly themed t-shirts. Our cashier one day sported a bright pink t-shirt that read, “What happens at the Pig stays at the Pig.” I liked it and told her so. “Yeah, but it’s NOT true,” she laughed. I’m by nature curious, and often ask people how they like living here. “Love it,” “Warm, friendly people,” “Wonderful community,” “Safe, I never lock my doors,” and “People really care about each other,” are common responses. So, too, is “But you’d better behave because everybody’s gonna know your business!”
This looks like a place I’d like to visit. Any vegan restaurants…? Haha! Probably not. I’ll wait till I have another kitchen on wheels. :o)
Haha is right!! I think you’d be stuck with grits and greens. The seafood here is some of the best in the world (and from some of the cleanest waters anywhere), but for vegan cooking you’ll definitely need your kitchen on wheels. And then, you’ll love it here!
We enjoy the seafood (obviously) and work hard to source other organic ingredients — the Piggly Wiggly, amazingly enough, has a handful of organic items (salad greens, spinach, eggs, cream) and we stock up on other organic staples in nearby towns with excellent food co-ops.
Sure hope you and Eric are behaving yourselves and I hope you scored a T shirt!
More amazing pics and words.
Sue, we got a good laugh out of your comment! We’re behaving ourselves as best we can, sometimes better than others. So far I don’t think we’ve given anyone much to talk about. As far as t-shirts, Eric now has a fine selection of no less than FIVE t-shirts from Apalachicola. I especially like his “Got Oysters?” shirt. ;-)
I love reading about your time in Apalachicola and your pictures are amazing! You have captured in word and image a place that is very special to our family, too! It was great seeing you and Eric! Let’s have a 95th Street reunion next time you are in Apalachicola!
Linda, spending the evening with you and Cheryl and your mom was a highlight of our trip! No matter how many years have passed, you and your family will always hold a very special place in my heart. We would love a 95th Street reunion!!