Homecoming (of a sort)

We made it to the first stop in our four-week tour of Virginia, Maryland, and D.C.: Richmond, my hometown. Kinda. I grew up in the countryside outside of Richmond, and the place has grown like wildfire since I left (like everywhere in the world, pretty much).

As soon as we pulled in to our site, I was itching to go to a microbrewery in the Fan district, since Tracy and I used to make a weekend vacation out of staying at our friend Mary Margaret’s house or a BnB and walking to as many breweries and cideries (and even a meadery) as we could in a day, stopping for unusual food treats between each one to keep us going.

But, although we’re vaccinated, we’re still wary, taking our time getting back into public places. So, my hometown is even more foreign to me than it would be after several years away, after a year on the road, and, add to that, after a pandemic. The short version: it’s weird to be back.

However, we’re definitely seeing many friends and family here in a careful manner: at least one get-together per non-travel day, it looks like. I feel like I’m a celebrity on a book tour—it’s super fun. I won’t go on and on about all the people though, since this blog is supposed to be about travel; it’s not that old show, Shelly: This Is Your LIfe!

Suffice it to say that last night Tracy and I were treated to a homemade dinner and quality hanging out time by one of my oldest friends and his wife. Tonight we’re meeting my cousin at a microbrewery, and tomorrow it’ll be lunch with my aunt and uncle outside at a park. Bring on the reunions!

(After I wrote this, I added the photo above of Tracy and my cousin Lisa, who chatted with gusto for hours with us at a well-run microbrewery outside, with our FAVORITE taco restaurant that had fled the Fan, now appearing as a taco truck for our dinner. Win win win. I loved seeing you, Lisa!)

Pocahontas State Park

Our base for all this visiting is south of Richmond, at yet another wooded, lovely large state park built in the 1930s by the Civilian Conservation Corps.

Around 200 men lived in the woods here, building the recreation area for room and board and very little pay, but it was some pay which was better than the alternative during the Depression.

We’ve been here only a day, but there are a kazillion trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding: so many that the trails map is hard to read. Yesterday we made it to an aquatic center (like a water park) that’s getting a facelift before the summer season starts here.

(Click below for a short video of a long snake. I can’t get a preview to show, and I don’t want to surprise any snake-fearful folks.)

Tracy almost stepped on a snake, and Banjo was so exited to be in the woods (like we don’t go hiking practically everyday) that she pulled the leash obnoxiously. It was a good hike!

And a good rest afterwards.

Tiny House Finished!

I finished much sooner than I expected (obsessed much?).

Once I added the “dust cover” (clear plastic walls on the three open sides), I couldn’t get my phone inside the house for any more close-ups. In fact, I think the dust cover is kind of messy (how are you supposed to add glue to the edges of something clear without the glue showing and dripping/sliding/gobbing up in obvious places?).

As soon as I see my friend Lucy next week, I’ll hand this baby over to her (she’s welcome to drop it in a dumpster for all I care: it was the process I enjoyed), and I’ll grab the next one I ordered that was delivered to her house. Stay tuned about that one: it’s bigger!

5 thoughts to “Homecoming (of a sort)”

  1. I don’t post often but enjoy your blog. We got the link from a Mutual friends, Dave and Renee. We are currently camping in a class A in Haymarket VA. Very close to Manasses. The place name is Greenville Farm Family Campground. It is a working farm. On AllStays it gets mixed reviews. I kind of like it but I’m in the forest on a 30 amp site. The 50 amp sites would be nice for the full hookup but I would miss the trees and elbow room. Watch for ticks.

    Love the blog. Have a great visit.
    John and Regina

    1. Hi John, yes I remember you from Dave and Renee’s for sure. So funny that you’re so close. We’re booked up visiting my son the next three weeks or we would check this place out. I like trees and elbow room, as well. :). Pulled a tick off Banjo yesterday!