#100 Magnolia Springs.

Between Orange Beach and Mobile, near Foley, Alabama, there is a little jewel of a southern town hidden from the highway and tucked beneath enormous live oaks beside Magnolia River. Magnolia Springs has been a favorite stop of mine since college, because we would sometimes get off the expressway and pass through to go to the amazing Moore Brothers Village Market to buy their gourmet spices and marinades. Ben and I decided we’d give it a whole afternoon instead of a quick stop, and we. are. in. love. This place can’t possibly be real. We can’t imagine that there are people who actually get to live there year round, though they most certainly do (it was like Mayberry — everyone was being so friendly and stopping their cars in the middle of the road to chit chat) and we hope they realize how magical it is. The air was laden with the smell of wisteria, a group of teenage girls rode through in swimsuits on their bicycles to pop in to the market and buy Dreamcicles. The clerks and bakers in the shop couldn’t wait to greet us. It was simply magical. In my mind, I kept hearing two songs: In the Summertime (Mungo Jerry), and Wasting Time (Dave Matthews Band). Let me show you around!
(at Moore Brothers Village Market, which is now actually an AWESOME bakery that reminds me a lot of Bottletree in Oxford).

(inside Moore Brothers)

(the scrumptious roasted vegetables we ordered for dinner)

(the town church, across the street from the market)

(the main street through the town, Oak Street)

(Typical Magnolia Springs houses. Like something from a dream.)

(We met these ladies on our walk. They were headed to the community pot luck dinner.)

(When you get off Oak Street, most of the roads are dirt and you meet a lot of people jogging, walking, and talking. Too bad you don’t see those people in this picture, huh?)

(We met some super friendly people who told us to check out the river by taking a little trail through the woods. Justin (in the middle) is getting married in October, so I gave him my business card. They invited us to come back for kayaking this summer.)

I can’t wait to go back. Next time, we’re bringing friends who can verify that we didn’t imagine this place into being.