You may not find this terribly rewarding unless you're included here, so this is a good time for casual and random browsers to turn back before they get too caught up in the sweep and majesty of the proceedings and can't let go.
Melvin having a snooze on our dining table, an antique from a centuries-old French farmhouse . . .
. . . which is soon to be manhandled up the stairs to become our work table in the study.
Our (former) dining table is now awaiting its transmogrification into the study table. Choupette wants to be part of this.
Melvin is merely curious about the dining table sitting out in the middle of the room.
Here's why -- a much more attractive antique table (with chairs); Kurt's mother, our close friend in Leesburg, is moving to join Kurt near the Univ. California Berkeley, and Kristin has inherited the table and the lovely corner cupboard in the . . . corner. Kurt has just hired a van and kindly driven it down for us.
Hospitality and celebrations are in order . . .
. . . however exhausted we may be from getting those things up from the van in the street.
Choupette is determined to find out what this is all about.
Even to the extent of scaring us half to death with a tightrope-walk along the railing.
Preparing a photographic thank you note for Marbeth for her generosity
The thank you note
Kurt joins us for the Saturday morning farmers' market, 29 May 2021.
Kristin social distancing on line for the Poplar Ridge Farms organic stuff
Only a short line at the moment for the Blue Ridge Apple Cider Doughnuts
Today is Staunton's turn for the 'VMFA on the road' mobile museum, from the Virginia Museum of the Fine Arts.
We're showing Kurt one of our Staunton historic hotspots, the Trinity Episcopal Church (Tiffany windows!).
The present residence of quite a few former Staunton worthies
Downtown Staunton on a weekend, waiting for the many restaurants to set up on the high street once the drizzly rain gives us a break
The Shakespeare theatre, soon (we hope) to be back in post-covid operation
Beverley Street, the high street, from the other end
Backlit Choupette staking out her observation post on the new (old) work table in the study
And being very insistent about it
And making sure that Melvin the Doge understands the situation here --
-- but Melvin is not presently a threat to anyone.
We've been driving all over the Allegheny Mountains planning to do a short hike around Todd Lake, way up there in nowhere, and nowhere is what we've found.
Eventually we located Todd Lake, too late to start our hike. A 'scenic drive', in any case.
The Upper Shamokin Falls 'hike'
We've been prevented once again by the Feds from access to our favorite short hiking trails around Sherando Lake (only RVs with reservations allowed near it), so we've gone over the Blue Ridge to the famous Wintergreen Resort, where there are said to be some hiking trails for the enjoyment of the rich people with their second homes and condos in the rather depressing 'resort' spread all along the east side of the Blue Ridge. (There's said to be skiing here, too, but when we visited for a recce here last year that consisted of a single slope of artificial snow.)
And after driving all round the place looking for a reason to get out of the car, we've finally found this one.
Though it turns about that we may need to pretend that we're 'guests' (which, in a way, we are).
'God made the wilderness, nobody disputes that, but we bought it and put up tacky house all over it, so go away.'
But it's all we've got going at the moment, so down we go . . .
. . . in the hope that the Upper Shamokin Falls are all natural and not the outflow from some hastily-rigged sewage systems.
The trail, however, is a nice one.
No sign at all of sewage. Faintly surprised by that.
Whatever trail wanders downhill later becomes an uphill trail.
Alison is visiting from the observatory on Mauna Kea in Hawaii, and will be condo-minding our flat in the Old Y for the summer, whilst we're in Wisconsin, prior to moving on to in-person work at the National Science Foundation in Alexandria in the fall.
The Falls make an appearance.
These are worth the trip -- and absolutely no sign of sewage.
It's not one for the record books, but hiking-wise it will brighten this otherwise lost afternoon.
Kristin's not so disappointed now.
Discussions about the coming summer arrangements, perhaps, or about the coming uphill ordeal.
So, it's soon time to think more seriously about the uphill.
Which in fact is a very easy walk of not much more than 20 minutes.
It's just good on a fine afternoon to get out and stretch the aging legs a bit.
And so, having escaped arrest for trespassing on their trail, we bid the Wintergreenies a lukewarm farewell.
And adjourn for lunch, which, in my case . . .
. . . was probably the best reuben sandwich I've ever had placed in front of me.
Scrutinizing the menu (photo by Alison)
Scrutinized by Alison
That's the name of the place. Note it. On Hwy 151 off the Rockfish Gap Turnpike (US 250) in Afton, Virginia, in the eastern foothills of the Blue Ridge.