Thursday, July 07, 2016

Day 19 of 30 Days of Mayhem: Washing DC to Walkertown, NC

Travel day! Yippee!  The kids so look forward to these days.  I wish I was telling the truth.  Travel days are dreaded days.  The only good thing about them is they are somewhat rest days, well once all the packing and loading is done.  But given that there are six of us the packing and loading is no small chore.

We all slept in as we had a full, if somewhat disappointing previous day.  No, no one is still bitter or holding a grudge.  While we were getting ready, eating breakfast and packing up Cathi and Griffin were nice and drove over to visit with us and keep us company.

We so enjoyed spending time with our Chicago Maham family.  We love spending time with them.  It worked out great that Griffin finished up at the Summit Boy Scout Camp right before we hit DC and gave us an excuse to all meet up and hang out for a few days.  I wanted to get to the Chicago area as part of 30 Days of Mayhem but there were too many stops and not enough days and Chicago was too far west.  Hmmm.  We will have to figure out a time to get up there soon.  February break might not be long enough to drive up, visit and get back without missing a few days of school.  We'll have to give that some thought.  Though the Chicago Mahams may not want the Maniacs to descend on them and if not, I can understand.  We are kind of a whole lot of crazy.

Oh where was I?  Packing up, tired, travel day, disappointed still from Firework Fiasco of 2016 - ok that might be a little dramatic, I'm starting to sound like one or two of my daughters.  Anyway.  We get in the car and Michael and I quietly have a conversation about possibly altering the plan and going straight to my parents' house and skipping Monticello and UVA.  I had seen both before, Michael had not.  After discussion, we decided to see what the kids thought.  Two really wanted to go, two did not.  They were not really any help.  Actually that is not true.

Guess which two wanted to go and why?  Eliza Claire was a definite "Yes!" and so was Charlotte.  Eliza Claire always wants to do anything and everything and never miss out on any opportunity.  Her answer is always "yes."  The only thing I can think of off the top of my head she would say "no" to is zip lining.  She thinks it sounds too dangerous.  But typically she is up for any outing. Charlotte wanted to go because she is currently reading a Thomas Jefferson biography.  Why? Because she has already read Alexander Hamilton, John Adams, and George Washington ones. So of course, she is reading Jefferson's.  Actually, I just asked which ones she had read so far and she has now finished Jefferson's and is on to Madison's!  This is my child that does not like history!  And in the last few months has read all these biographies! All because of the Hamilton musical.

The final decision was to proceed as planned.  We didn't want to regret being so close and not going once we had had some rest.  First we had to make a stop at Walmart to purchase new air mattresses.  Remember we had one spring a leak on our first night in Arkansas (Ar- Kansas  as Charlotte says)?  Well, the other one sprung a leak our last night in DC.  I was fed up with the kids ruining air mattresses so I bought the absolute cheapest ones I could find and a separate air pump.

It seemed to take for ever to get to Monticello.  It was around 3:00 when we finally got there.  Ruby decided she did NOT want to do the tour/visit.  She was determined and there was going to be no changing her mind.  I agreed to stay with her as I had been there 20+ years before.  That way everyone who wanted to see it and had not done so previously would be able to do so.

Michael went to purchase tickets and learned that the next tour was at 4:40.  He came back sans tickets as he did not think anyone wanted to wait that long.  He, Rehm, Charlotte and Eliza Claire decided to walk up to the house to see the outside but just skip the tour.  Ruby and I decided to check out the gift shop.

While hanging out in the gift shop, I decided I could go ahead and buy a Christmas ornament from there so we would not have to take time to do it after the rest of the family returned.  That has been our go to souvenir on this trip.  Actually that tradition started long before this trip.  It started on our honeymoon.  Most places we go that we decided we would like to have a souvenir from, we get an ornament.  It is nice because every year at Christmas we get the reminder of all the fun places we've been.

About an hour later Michael and the kids came back.  They were hot and sweaty.  I asked how it was.  They had not seen anything yet!  They took a wrong turn and had been on a nice, hot hike through the woods.  They left again.  Ruby and I went back in the gift shop and found a cool place to sit and wait.  About 10 minutes later everyone was back again.

You can't even get up the hill to where you can see the house from the outside with out a ticket!  So now the four of them had walked a bunch, gotten sweaty and tired and not seen anything.  We had driven out of our way and we had a great souvenir of a house, they never saw.  Yes, it is hilarious.  And we will get to talk about it all every time we put that ornament on the Christmas tree every year.  Eliza Claire will get to lament about two back to back days of disappointment and disillusionment.  Won't it be awesome?

We did go drive around UVA.  It was beautiful.  Everyone was duly impressed. I don't think Rehm said he could/would consider going to school there, but he was impressed with the sports facilities.  Though the law buildings underwhelmed him as they all looked like they were built in the 70s.

At dinner time Michael informed the kids we were stopping to get dinner.

Charlotte:  What do you mean 'stopping?' You mean like we are stopping at a grocery store and Mom is going in to get stuff?

Michael:  No, we are stopping at a restaurant and buying food that has already been cooked!

Charlotte:  Seriously?  Are you sure?  Is this a joke?  This better not be a joke!

We stopped at Bo 'Jangles, a Rehm favorite.  He had already informed me when we left Charlottesville that we were in Bo 'Jangles territory.

We got to Walkertown around 9:00 pm.  Yippee!  Nowhere to be for a few days.  Just time to visit and relax.


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