Back from Virginia! We had a great time, visiting Monticello, five other plantations, five wineries, the University of Virginia, the College of William and Mary, the Museum of the Confederacy, and Colonial Williamsburg. Brooke didn’t like my idea of standing outside the restrooms at Monticello selling T-shirts that say “I took a crap at Monticello!” but I thought it was hilarious.
On Monday afternoon, after we’d visited Williamsburg, we decided to drive a little further to Newport News for dinner. After so much “quaintness,” we were in for a rude awakening. Although it’s right on the water, and a big shipbuilding town, Newport News is pretty much an ugly suburb of Hampton, which is an ugly suburb of Virginia Beach. Unable to find a decent restaurant, we ended up speeding down a street called Mercury Boulevard, 12-16 lanes wide (wider than all the highways we had driven), lined on both sides with endless chain restaurants (Denny’s, Arby’s, Chi-Chi’s, Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Waffle House). It was depressing. When I saw my second Waffle House within a quarter mile, I knew I was in hell. When we settled on The Olive Garden, we realized we couldn’t get off in time. We had to overshoot, turn right, turn around, turn left, turn left again, turn around, then turn right, then turn right again. Oh the convenience!
Overall, though, a wonderful trip, to a (mostly) beautiful state. Our only regret is that we weren’t able to get together with our favourite Virginians, Mike and Dineen Wasylik, for dinner. Next time in D.C. guys!