I’m exhausted. Today, I finally beat Zachary M Smith in a foot race! Yep, I ran the Sweetheart 5K in Gulf Shores with one goal in mind. Crush my man. CA-Rush him. It took me just 31:03 to do it.
I’m tired and feeling some sadness looming. We are all packed up and leaving Alabama tomorrow. Why am I so sad?
BECAUSE We did it. We found the Hart of Dixie.
If you haven’t watched Hart of Dixie, please do. It’s on Netflix. It will change your life. You will be a happier version of yourself after spending a little tube-time in the town of Blue Bell.
The Hart of Dixie is the story of a New York physician that lands on a hard break and ends up taking a life sized detour by moving to Southern Alabama. The characters are humorous and charming. The scenery is as quaint as can be and the story line is gonna’ melt your molasses.
How we ended up here
It’s embarrassing for me to say that this show is one of the reasons why I wanted to visit Southern Alabama. I knew that the little town of Blue Bell was fictitious, but I had my suspicions that the area south of Mobile was where the show was based. The plot often mentions the actual Alabama towns of Fairhope and Daphne. You can’t get these things passed me, Hollywood screen writers.
Oh magnolia, was I right.
We are currently staying on the outskirts of a small (like population 804), tucked away town called Magnolia Springs. Holy posies, it’s beautiful. It’s a must see blip along Highway 98.
Seriously, friends and family. You need to put this area on your list of places to visit. Zach and I plan to come back next year around this same time and run a 1/2 Marathon. You can rent a 3 bed/2 bath condo on the beach – like beach front for $1,500/month.
This past Wednesday, after catching Throwed Rolls at Lamberts in Foley, we took the longer route home. I often insist we go out of our way to drive down my all-time favorite road, which is in Magnolia Springs.
Jessie’s Restaurant or Fancie’s Restaurant?
During this trip we also stopped at a hidden boardwalk behind Jesse’s Restaurant to share a moment along the Magnolia River. This river, by the way, is home to the only waterway mail delivery route in the U.S.
We enjoyed some quite time and soaked up the scenery. Later that evening, we were watching Hart of Dixie, because yes, Zach surprised me with Seasons 1 and 2 on DVD for our 8 year anniversary. We don’t always have wifi, so I have been having HOD withdrawals and he could no longer deal with me checking every used DVD store for the series.
Our Krewe before the 5k
Driving down Magnolia Springs
My jaw hit the bed
We are cuddled up in bed with the pooches, enjoying our show and Zach says rewind that. He fiddled with the remote awhile and then said here it is. My jaw dropped to the floor. There on the screen was the exact spot we were standing along the Magnolia River earlier that day. Bless your Harts, we found Blue Bell!
Not everything about the setting of the show, which was filmed on a set in Hollywood, is found in Magnolia Springs. But we are finding pieces of Dixie sprinkled all over Southern Alabama.
Even Mobile reminds us of HOD
Last weekend we spent the entire day in Mobile catching beads and other random junk (Top Ramen, a hairbrush, Moonpies). We found that Mobile has many quaint aspects, which include a handful of squares. They even have a square dedicated to the history of Mardi Gras. Blue Bell most notably had a grand square where town events were centered. It’s been fun to piece together many of the real life settings with my favorite show. I bet you have a show that makes you want to go scene hunting. I’ll come with you, it’s my thing now.
Bye Blue Bell, Hello Reba
We leave Sunday and begin our trek to Texas (so of course I’ll switch to watching Reba). It is going to be hard to say goodbye to Alabama. We have enjoyed the small town atmosphere, reacquainting with old friends and exploring an area new to both of us. It’s been a pleasant surprise and we plan to come back again.
Keno withdrawals is also a thing
Our next extended stay will be in Sherman, Texas. Along the way we will spend a few nights in Crystal Springs, Mississippi and Texarkana, Arkansas. Before you know it we will be catching up on our Keno in Las Vegas and then headed back north. (FYI, there’s no keno anywhere. ANYWHERE.)
I’ll leave you with a few other photos from our time in Alabama.
Zach and Jena pre-marriage Mardi Gras