Visiting friends - Purcellville, Virginia
After two days of rest, I headed 30 minutes south to the other side of Loudoun County to see an old friend, Amy Calce. We met in Texas when she was in Teach for America and she lived across from me for about two years. We laughed and cried and laughed some more during those times. I miss those less complicated times. Anyway, I was off to stay the night over at the Calce house, now married, so Cornell house.
I really liked the area they live in. It's a quiet area, but I would not say neighborhood. I found out later that Louden County is one of the riches counties in America and I can see why. There are huge rolling fields with giant houses on it, worth a couple million, sometimes more. It varies as you go, but anything in that county is not cheap. Now with that said, the Cornell's do have nice house, but many of their county-folk have some ridiculous homesteads. In their neck of the woods, here are three or four houses on their street and the neighbors have comparable houses. Louden county is cool though. It is very different than anything I'm used to or have experienced.
After hugs and introductions we toured the awesome Cornell house. Amy's parents have an apartment above the house than I was able to stay in. No offense to the other gracious and wonderful people who let me stay with them, but this was the most comfortable location I stayed at on the whole trip. After seeing my temporary digs, we toured the bee colonies (she has 4) and her great garden. It's quite the awesome spread.
After the tour your we headed out to a brewery that was close by, the Dirt Farm Brewery. It's a nice little brewery that had a nice deck and some grass the kids used to play on. The view from the deck was beautiful even though it was overcast and humid. Dirt Farm had a good little pizza appetizers and I had a Straw Golden IPA which was excellent. They brew about 20 or so beers (not all available at once) and I think they are expanding. A nice little set-up.
Now I would be doing the Cornell's a great disservice if I didn't talk about the kids, Luke and Anna. They were so sweet! They are four and two, respectively, and have a ton of energy. I mean a ton. Plus they are smart and curious, so it's full time interaction with them. Once they got that Mom and Dad were cool with me, its was fun time. Luke calls men Mr. and the neighbor's name is Chris so I became Mr. Kris Wood. 'Um, Mr. Kris Wood would you like to come and watch Curious George with me?" It was awesome being called my full name by a four year. They run and laugh and ask questions and climb on you. Typical awesome kid stuff.
After dinner, which was excellent and include many tomatoes and squash from the garden, I got to try some honey from the colonies. Ummm good. I want bees. And a garden. Damn you suburbs. We were bushed from the days activities and so I edit some photos and talk to my friend Aiden for a bit and went to bed. Aiden may become prominent in next summer's blog. Hopefully Martha's Vineyard. We'll see.
National Air and Space Museum, Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
The next day we had some breakfast and visited the National Air and Space Museum. Although in DC technically, it only took 35 minutes to get there. Admission is free but parking is $15. Interesting.The museum was huge. I guess thats not a big surprise considering it houses a bunch or airplanes and spacecraft, but still. BIG. They had a Stealth Bomber and a Space Shuttle.
The Bottom floor basically takes you thought flight in a chronological order with some areas focusing on different wars. They include guns and suits and other aero-related artifacts in glass cases around the perimeter with the planes in the middle. We had the kids with us so two hours is what we got, which was awesome, but I could have easily stayed twice as long. I'm not complaining, just for museum-geekness and all, it was vast and informative. The museum also has a restoration hanger you can see down into and watch the mechanics (I feel like I'm selling them short by calling them mechanics) There also a IMAX and a McDonald's. It's a great place for kids.
When we got back, I had to head back to the basecamp on the other side of Loudoun County. It was our dinner night there and I needed to be back. It was so uplifting to see Amy. She is one of the most amazing women/people I have ever known. To know Amy Calce is to love Amy Calce. Thanks for being you.