Pawleys Island: Heaven on Earth

The article below appeared in the Washington Post written by Steven B. Roberts

When I was living in Europe with my family in the mid-1970s, we often rented houses on Greek islands. We relished being able to unpack and unplug, to fall into the rhythm of island life, to walk on the beaches, wander through the villages and wind down the day with a cool white wine and a warm pink sunset.

When we returned to the United States, we looked for a place that resembled a Greek island but wasn’t Martha’s Vineyard or Nantucket (we did not want to add cocktail parties to our evening ritual). A friend mentioned Pawleys Island, on the South Carolina coast, which is not really an island at all but a glorified sandbar separated from the mainland by a narrow salt creek and a mile-wide mind-set.

In 1978, we rented a house for a week. One week became two; then we traded up to an ocean view and a third week. Four years ago we bought our own house, and if you ask me to name my favorite place in the world, on many days I would answer Pawleys.

I feel a freedom here, a quiet calmness, that I don’t feel anywhere else. Life is reduced to a few simple questions: tennis or boating? Book or movie? Shrimp or barbecue? Walk on the beach with the dogs or leave them home? (Actually, we always take them.) Every family sets its own priorities. Our best friends walk in the early morning, we prefer the evening, and that’s the whole point. No rules. Just don’t track sand into the house.

Pawleys itself is pristine and protected — just several hundred private homes, a few small inns, one egregious condo complex, no commercial enterprises. Even if every person in every house goes to the beach at the same time, it’s still pretty empty. But just across the causeway, five minutes away, is a 24-hour CVS, an invaluable source of sunscreen and Band-Aids when the house is full of six active grandchildren. And beyond the CVS lies 60 miles of coastline, stretching from Myrtle Beach to Georgetown, harboring a gazillion things to do when everyone overdoses on sun and sand. The area goes by many names — the Low Country, the Grand Strand, and a new one, Hammock Coast — but I just think of it as Paradise. Or Home. Pretty much the same thing.

Read the entire article and see a slide show HERE

NEED A PLACE TO STAY? 63A LAKESIDE VILLAS LITCHFIELD BY THE SEA PAWLEYS ISLAND, SC

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About hemphillbrett
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