We drove to Charlottesville for a long weekend-a birthday present from Denise to Sandy.  In Charlottesville we would stay with Sandy’s sister and then on to Roanoke where Denise’s son is in graduate school.  We had looked forward to this trip for six months.

Our first stop was a monastery where the nuns make gouda cheese.  We were late but Denise sweet talked a nun into selling us a wheel.  We lingered a bit, enjoyed the scenery and played with the dogs.   We left the monastery and found a little restaurant on the side of the road-a refurbished one pump gas station.  The sandwiches were amazing and it was a beautiful spot.  We sat outside in the sun and relished every bite. 

Our next stop was a cidery where they ferment the apples in clay amphorae called kvevri, buried in the ground.  It is an ancient way of making wine and cider.  Of course, we bought a bottle or two.   

That afternoon we scoured junk stores for treasures-more scouring than buying but it was fun.  It was a nice night so we found a restaurant that had outdoor seating and enjoyed another good meal.  Back at Carrie’s house, we found ourselves trapped in the car as we watched a skunk walk along the fence, make a sharp left and try to get in to the crawl space of her house.  He got stuck at one point and all you could see where his little legs moving a mile a minute looking for traction to get himself through the space in the foundation.  Unfortunately on the third try he made it.  We laughed until our stomachs hurt.  Happily, we coexisted and there were no mishaps.

The next morning we went to the Charlottesville Farmers Market.  It was everything we hoped it would be and we filled the car with fresh produce.  

Next stop was an apple orchard recommended by a gentleman we met at the cidery.  We drove up a mountain on curvy roads thinking we’d pick apples in a bucolic setting .  It was like a scene from a Chevy Chase movie.  There must have been 1000 cars.  It was our quickest stop.  We bought apples and ran.  The apples are amazing though.  Then it was off to Roanoke.  We had picked the perfect weekend.  The mountains were ablaze in color.   We walked the campus of Hollins University,  met the ladies at the garden center where Rory works and had a very good dinner at a local restaurant.  The next morning we drove to meet some of Rory’s friends.  Denise had made a big batch of Rory’s favorite:  chicken enchiladas.  It is always special to share the lives your children lead far from home.  Then it was back home for us.  It was a perfect weekend.


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  1. love yoru perfect weekend and glad it was not spoiled by Pepe LePew (sp?)

  2. It looks and sounds like a great day.

  3. Oh my these are stunning. I am sure you have seen the pictures of our neighborhood and know why we have not been around to comment. I have a couple of questions for you? Are you on FB? And I just learned how important it is to label photos, do you know about that? Email me on

  4. likeitiz says:

    Thanks for taking us there with you. Would live to visit these places one day.

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