Archive for the ‘Virginia’ Category

Skyline Drive

Monday, July 6th, 2009
Skyline Drive

Skyline Drive

Mom’s been teased for many yrs about not going anywhere, and her reply is that the world comes to her. Which is pretty much true, I’m finding. The farm is a little like Brigadoon, and in the past wk we’ve had a whole lot of visitors.

At the same time, I’m not the sitting still kind. So Friday I started getting a bit stir-crazy. I mean, after all, I’m here to explore the East coast a bit, and Virginia in particular.

I decided to make one of my first forays to Front Royal, and then drive a bit down the Skyline Drive. It was kind of a hazy day, but I could still see most of the valley from the various viewpoints. I only went as far as Luray, VA, but got a season pass so that I could go as many times as I like.

From our farm, we could see fireworks from about 3 municipalities, but I’m thinking the Skyline Drive would really be an excellent fireworks viewpoint.

Special Trees

Saturday, June 27th, 2009
Mimosa & Magnolia

Mimosa & Magnolia

There are lots of special trees on Mt Pleasant Farm. Some are huge & shade the house. Some, like the linden tree, suddenly burst into bloom. And the venerable 3-story pear tree that sometimes deigns to provide pears in the fall. Others are just starting out- the tiny redbuds that will grow into an allee along the drive, the lime tree in a pot that gets carried into the house in the fall.

But these two trees, the mimosa & magnolia between the house & the barn have stories.

The mimosa tree was a gift to Slim from a friend who heard he loved mimosa (powder puff is the local name) trees. She found one growing in someone’s front yard, and was given permission to dig up a seedling from under it. So 17 years ago, she brought Slim a 4-inch seedling for his birthday. I’m not good with height estimation, but it looks about 25 feet tall to me. It’s a magnet for hummingbirds, and the blossoms are wonderful. Slim may be gone, but the mimosa tree is one of his legacies to us.

The magnolia tree has an even stranger history. It was grown from a seed 16 years ago. There had been a magnolia tree in the front yard, probably nearly as old as the 200-year old house.  My mom was talking to the woman (then elderly) who had lived at Mt Pleasant before Slim. It turned out that she (Ms Lou Davison) had taken a slip from the tree with her, had grown it into a tree and was more than willing to pass on a seed. So this magnolia tree is the “grandbaby” of the original Mt Pleasant magnolia.

In my gypsy life, sometimes buying green bananas can be an act of faith. But thank goodness there are some people with enough patience and faith to plant trees.

Mimosa blossom (Powder puff)

Mimosa blossom (Powder puff)

Rainy Day Fun

Wednesday, June 17th, 2009

cristinasWell, today was a rainy day, so while the crops (and the weeds unfortunately) are growing like gangbusters, I got an unscheduled day off.

Decided to take myself on an Artist’s Date & explore downtown S’burg, with the goal of finding a good hangout.

First, I went to the local Antique Mall & messed around for a while. Didn’t see anything I couldn’t live w/out, especially since I’ll be living out of a suitcase for the forseeable future.

Then I decided to check out the “new” Cristina’s. The old one had been a really good Oaxacan-style Mexican restaurant, but they’ve moved & changed to more of a coffee shop/bistro format.

Well, I’ve found my new hangout, all right. They’re next door to the library, have wireless AND espresso AND comfy couches to sit & read in… Could I ask for more? They also create food from local organic food when possible, so I’m going to see if they’ll be a possble customer, too.

My online Spanish classes started today, so I’m excited about that. Cain has taught me to say Bad Cats and I figured out how to say “I’m a gypsy.” (Soy gitana- I think. I’ll check w/him on that. It may mean something really rude.) But in my Spanish online class, I’m learning to say “It’s important that you help me with this.” “I want to buy a chair.” and other vital phrases.

Hasta mañana…

Citizenship!

Tuesday, June 16th, 2009

Today I:

1) Went to the bank & got a real ATM card, one for a real VA bank & not one of those sketchy west-coast banks. Took them a bouquet of flowers

2) Went to Southern States & got 50# of chick grit

3) Went to the library & got myself a real Strasburg library card (w/borrowing privileges in Winchester as well) Brought them some flowers, too.

4) Signed up to be a library volunteer. Chatted w/the circulation volunteer about who in town I knew & was related to (or not) and was waived the “out-of-town” fee. (I know a council member & will not be using the genealogy facilities)  And I drawl, but don’t say li-berry.

So I’d say I’m on my way to becoming a  citizen of S’burg, at least for the summer. Still have not eaten at the “Hi Neighbor” cafe, which is reputed to be the real test. I’m finding that a little daunting. I’m  sure they don’t have espresso there, much less wireless.  And I have a feeling if I tell them I’m gluten-sensitive, they’ll call an ambulance (or the sheriff.)