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Fairhope, Alabama…

Posted by on January 5, 2017

GREETED BY A STORM. We arrived in Fairhope, Alabama on Monday afternoon and were met a few hours later by a potent thunderstorm, high winds and tornado warnings. That’s “warnings,” not “watches.” There’s a difference! Severe weather caused widespread damage to lower Alabama and by Tuesday morning the National Weather Service reported that 12 tornadoes had occurred in the area. Even though I’ve become more accustomed to severe weather conditions than we ever encountered back home in San Diego, this storm caused me to become alarmed. The lightening was so bright that the entire area looked like an overexposed black and white photo all night long. Our friend Dylan, who lives in Mobile, was concerned enough that she offered us shelter in her home, but we decided to  ride out the storm in our motorhome. As it turned out, that was a sound decision. By morning, the sky was clear and although the temperature was only in the thirties the sun was shining brightly.

On Monday we drove from Pensacola to Fairhope, located on Mobile Bay in Alabama.

WE’LL BE HERE JUST A WEEK. We’ll be in Fairhope for just a week. The locals say the village is located in LA, meaning “lower Alabama.” It appears that cold weather will prevent us from exploring as much as we’d like. It’s chilly, overcast and breezy, hardly weather for a couple of tourists to stroll around town taking in the sights.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

FAIRHOPE’S TOWN SQUARE. But today, we did venture out and visit the Fairhope Pier, located on the Mobile Bay waterfront. The area is called the “Town Square.” It’s a gorgeous bright green lawn surrounding a massive fountain and bordered by a large rose garden. Just across the walkway is the entrance to the pier.

 

“Town Square” by the Fairhope Pier.

 

 

A cold, gloomy day at the pier in Fairhope, Alabama.

 

Another view of the pier on Mobile Bay in LA (Lower Alabama).

 

 

Private piers on the Bay.

 

FAIRHOPE’S STORYBOOK CASTLES. After our walk on the pier, we visited a couple of famous local residences called the Fairhope Storybook Castles. The Sheldon and Mosher Castles are neighboring houses located on Oak Street, right in the village. They signify the iconoclastic worldview that gave birth to the community in 1894.

 

 

Sheldon Castle

 

SHELDON CASTLE. The Sheldon Castle was built first, in 1946 by Craig Sheldon. According to a family member, it was built from stone from nearby Mobile Bay, hand-quarried and transported to the site. Contrary to the modern house styles which prevailed in the 1940’s, it might be characterized as a whimsical version of medieval-revival, hence the appellation “castle.”

 

Mosher Castle

MOSHER CASTLE. The Mosher Castle was built more recently by Dean Mosher, who married Sheldon’s daughter Pagan. She was delighted when her husband wished to help continue her father’s work. The Mosher Castle began coming to life after the Moshers purchased property adjacent to the Sheldon Castle.  In keeping with the original style, the Moshers have used local materials, art and craftsmanship wherever possible, including much of their own, and several special pieces Craig Sheldon never quite worked in to his castle next door. As any living form of art, the Mosher family continues to find inspiration and magic every where they look. And so, Mosher Castle continues to grow.

 

WITH A LITTLE LUCK. The forecast is for chilly days and freezing temperatures at night for the next few days. With a little luck, the weather will improve after that and we can look around a bit more in Fairhope before we move along. Plan to join us then, won’t you?

I’ll continue my story next time.

2 Responses to Fairhope, Alabama…

  1. Kitty

    I’m happy to see you’re back on the road exploring our great country. Cheers! 🍷
    Is Molly a good traveler?

  2. Greg Alford

    Right now we’re buttoned up and riding out some pretty potent weather! It’s rainy, windy and the temperature is already about 32 degrees outside. We’re going to fiddle around in Alabama and Florida until it gets warm enough to head north and see some parts of the country that will be new to us. Molly seems to be a pretty good traveler so far…we’ll keep our fingers crossed. It’s fun having her around all the time!

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