Fifteen miles south of America's most popular golfing destination is a little village time seems to have forgotten. Murrells Inlet. Where people are the way they're supposed to be.
I relocated to Murrells Inlet seven years ago from Los Angeles. I was looking for peace, contentment and a place where the government doesn't tell me what to eat, what to think and what to do. I found it here in this beautiful little fishing village in South Carolina.
Murrells Inlet is located on a beautiful, 60-mile stretch of gorgeous white-sand beach in South Carolina called the Grand Strand. The Inlet is where pirates used to hide. Now, its one of the most beautiful, natural and peaceful villages in the U.S.
The best thing about Murrells Inlet is the people. The locals (as opposed to the vacationing northerners, referred to as Snowbirds) are not concerned with fancy cars, designer labels or popular trends. They are just as they appear. Many of the men wear baseball caps, drink beer and drive pick-up trucks. Many of the women are married and spend their time taking care of their families. Wednesdays are reserved for bible classes.
In this neck of the woods, what you see is what you get. More often than not, it's a smile, as the locals are naturally friendly, even to snowbirds. Most adults are married, with 25-year plus wedding anniversaries the norm, not the exception. People aren't shy about praying over their meals and Sundays are for church going.
If that's not your cup of tea, you might be more comfortable in one of the many former plantations that have been converted to gated communities. Million dollar homes with all the amenities are sprinkled throughout the area, peopled by the increasing number of northerners who are relocating out of the cities. Just south of Murrells Inlet, Pawleys Island is where a lot of snowbirds now call home. They have imported their own culture, so visitors to the area can choose to hob-nob with the beautiful people or hang-out with the locals.
Murrells Inlet is the place to dine. Dozens of small restaurants are lined up along the Inlet, most serving oysters from their own beds located 100 yards away. With a working fishing fleet, fresh seafood and smiles are served to visitors from Myrtle Beach to Pawley's Island.
There is something for everyone in Murrells Inlet. Fishermen have a choice of the Inlet, the ocean, or the Intracoastal waterway. Golfers have a choice of over 100 courses. Campers have a choice of several campsites right on the beach, next to beautiful state parks.
World class entertainment is offered just up the coast in Myrtle Beach. The House of Blues, Carolina Opry, and Dixie Stampede are just a few of the venues. There are also plenty of water slides, museums, miniature golf and other tourist attractions for those looking for a little excitement.
If you've ever watched Father Knows Best or Leave It To Beaver, you should have some idea of everyday life in Murrells Inlet. Laid-back is the first adjective that comes to mind. People here aren't in any rush. Political correctness is just a word, practiced only in the gated communities. Vigorous debate is welcome and conservatives don't have to go stand in a corner for voicing opinions. And when residents say "Have a good day," they, by golly, mean it.
If you are looking to leave the rat race, there is no better place to relocate. If you want to reconnect with people, nature and God, this is the place for you. My decision to relocate from Los Angeles to Murrells Inlet was one of the best decisions of my life. My priorities have changed, as has my faith in human nature. I have found peace and contentment in this beautiful sea-side village. And you can, too.
Nancy Morgan is a columnist and news editor for conservative news site RightBias.com
She lives in South Carolina