Since I moved to South Carolina thirty years ago I’ve become nearly immune to surprise, but what I saw today off of Hwy 76 in Pendleton made me stop in my tracks. Yes, I confirmed after I pulled over to the side of the road, those are goats up on that roof deck.
After spying the livestock, I noticed a fellow dressed in blue jean coveralls and hat waving at passing traffic. Knowing he was bound to be friendly folk, I pulled in to ask about the goats.
Turns out there are four reasons Nanny and Billy and their friends are up on the roof deck. First, coyotes can’t get ‘em. Second, before runners had cars they used goats to carry moonshine over the mountains. Third, if you ever need to slip outside for a nip of moonshine you can always tell the wife you’re feeding the goats. And finally, because they’re an advertising hook to get people like me to stop and try Palmetto Moonshine, South Carolina’s first legal hooch.
Despite appearances, don’t mistake Palmetto Moonshine for a bunch of country bumpkins. They have a pretty spiffy website to educate customers on their enterprise, from flavored “shines” to an online shop. Believe it or not, you can even get a gift card.
So what do goats on a roof have to do with gardening? Not much I suppose, unless you count the fact that in these parts at least, the main ingredient of moonshine is corn or cornmeal. Out back, behind Palmetto Moonshine’s Zoo on the Roof, you’ll find proof in a pet pig named “Mash.”