A mid-September beach vacation

By G. Sam Piatt - Contributing Columnist

From the balcony of our vacation home on the eighth floor of the 19-story condominium Windy Hills in North Myrtle Beach, I first spotted him at 6 a.m. He was standing in the edge of the surf and casting line from a 12-foot rod out past the everlasting waves of the Atlantic Ocean.

He was still working when I made my way down to the beach about 11 a.m. to check the water temperature. It was rather cool up to the ankles, which was about as deep as I made it in. I decided not to challenge the knock-down waves which curled over themselves before breaking on the sand.

Back on the balcony after lunch, I saw he was still at it, never faltering, never taking a break. This angler had what we would call a bad (or good?) case of fishing fever.

Finally, at 3 p.m., I saw him winding up his poles and pulling his rod holders from the sand. I hurried down to catch him at the washing station, where he was hosing the sand from his feet and equipment.

He was Ashmond Brown of Virginia. Had he done any good?

“Yes,” he said, “I caught two, a regular spot and a red spot.”

The spot is a white fish about the size of a nice crappie with a black spot behind each gill. The catchers of them report they’re delicious to eat, especially when baked or broiled.

They inhabit the seashore from Massachusetts to Texas. The best bait is bloodworms.


My wife, Bonnie, and our daughter, Cindy, enjoyed September vacation on Myrtle Beach – Friday the 13th until returning home on the 20th.

Our days were filled with sunshine and near 90-degree temperatures. The night skies featured stars and a big yellow moon.

It had been more than 15 years since our previous trip to Myrtle. There were 13 of us then – kids, grandkids ad great-grandkids – sharing a Windy Hills four-bedroom condo 12 stories up.

That trip afforded great memories, aided by photo albums that told what we looked like away back then.


That also was the one where I arose at 5:30 a.m., went down to buy the morning newspaper, put two slices of bread in the sliding drawer-type toaster, which had no timer, went out onto the veranda with the paper and my coffee, intending to come right back and butter my toast.

The next thing I knew son Kendall pushed open the sliding glass doors with black smoke rolling out over his head.

“Your toast!” he shouted.

I looked in to see 12 people running around frantically in the smoke-filled apartment, the alarms fairly screaming, “Get up! Get out!”

For the rest of the trip they took away my toaster rights.


By G. Sam Piatt

Contributing Columnist

Reach G. SAM PIATT at [email protected] or (606) 932-3619.

Reach G. SAM PIATT at [email protected] or (606) 932-3619.