Sunday, July 6, 2008
Road Trip
We missed (Still) President Bush addressing the new citizens of this country on July 4th at Monticello but were able to tour the house and grounds after lunch. Usually, you get a tour guide to escort you from room to room but because it was a holiday, they changed the format and allowed you to walk freely around the house as you wished. In each room was a guide who talked about the significance and features of each room.

In the classroom, the guide was speaking of Thomas Jefferson's daughter and her children and how the room was used to school them. She spoke in the present tense and Sophie, who was listening with rapt attention asked "Are they still alive?" The guide gave a little chuckle and said "No, dear. They are most certainly not alive." I really wanted to tell her that if she was going to speak of the dead in the present tense to a girl who soaks up information like a sponge, do not act haughty when she asks if they are still living. She is proof that people are paying attention to you!

Photography is not permitted inside the house and so we only have exterior pictures to share. Here's the "nickel" side of the house:
Here's a picture of the garden and fields beyond:
The garden is maintained as a "library" of seeds originally cultivated and grown by Thomas Jefferson. The remainder of fruits and vegetables grown in the garden is donated to local food shelters and soup kitchens.

Once Sophie departed with her grandparents, we visited the family gravesite of Thomas Jefferson, then the University of Virginia and finally historic downtown Charlottesville.

Here's Harry on a sofa mosaic in the mall of historic downtown:

And here's Harry loving the big comfy bed at the hotel, after letting him swim until 9:30pm and letting him burn off the rest of his energy running the entire length of the hotel hallway:
The next morning I let him jump all over the beds as much as he wanted. I was hoping it would help tire him out for the long drive ahead of us on the the Skyline Drive.

We drove the northern half of it, all 105 miles. Here's the view from one of the first overlooks we stopped at:Here's another. Notice those clouds in the distance?

Further along drove right through those clouds. Here's how foggy it gets.
The fog starts very suddenly. One minute it is sunny and you are wearing sunglasses and turning up the air conditioning in the car. The next you are fumbling to turn on your highbeams like the cars in the picture below.

Then it's sunny all over again.

Then suddenly very, very foggy:

We're back now and Sophie is having a great time. She met some of her cousins and had fun at the family reunion/picnic. I can tell she misses her brother because every time she's called (4 times as of writing this post), she has asked to speak to her little brother about a minute into the phone call. Harry is loving his temporary only-child status and told his Uncle Will-who met up with us in Monticello-"I don't have a sister anymore!"


Anonymous Mom said...

Hey Guys,
Beautiful pics, especially those of my Harry Boy, he looks wonderful!! I looked up Shenadoah National Park online, its really beautiful, another place i would like to go on vacation, plus i could take the puppy!!

Love ya,

Blogger Andie said...

Love the pics! I miss those drives on Skyline drive...there are some great views.

Blogger CatMar said...

The picss are beautiful! Glad to hear that everyone is having a good vacation!

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