Sunday, September 20, 2009

Day 5: Stuanton Virginia and dino queen

Time to hit the road for our 3rd day in Virginia, (which is apparently the last state in the south)

Along the way Virginia just got prettier. Since Lynchburg is not directly off the interstate you have to travel some smaller roads to get there and back to N-81.

After we passed this bridge over the river we had to turn around and check it out. Its a trail head to the Appalachian Trail. There were teenagers jumping off the railing into the river and retired folks huffing (glue) along the day hike. Once we crossed the bridge the forest starts to swallow the trail with shade. We didn't go very far, but still it was getting noticeably cooler and darker, more and more inviting. It became very clear that we were just going to keep going...

With the last ounce of clarity left in our mind we turned back, vowing to return for a full month hike on the trail next summer. This would serve a two fold purpose. Not only would we be hiking the Appalachian Trail, we'd also be training for the Rockies. After 4 weeks through Virginia we'd be totally ready for Colorado. (We plan to spend the later 2 months of summer working at the Ecological lab I once lived in when I was a scientist).

(under the bridge)

Back on the road, we passed the famous natural bridge. We didn't actually see the bridge itself, but we did see all the crap that has been built up around it to lure tourists in. This guy was on the side of the road in Glasgow.

These are Chad's favorite thing to photograph, (maybe just as much as stencils). I think we turned around like 3 times... well... 2 times. We didn't turn around for Foamhenge. Despite his pleas. He'd lost his damn mind when we passed it. I was "blah blah blahing" about something when we saw the sign...


he still regrets that we did not stop.

sorry... so do i. Next time. i promise

Arriving in Staunton we were greeted by more elephants:

It had a wonderful feel. warm afternoon sunlight. wooden tables and chairs. Large couches with big pillows. There were 2 girls conversing over a small pot of tea on the lips shaped lounge.
One was american, one japanese, they were practicing english. One was explaining to the other the difference between 'fat' and 'chubby'. it was really cute to over hear.

Marybeth took care of us all night. She is the owner and the only employee (the only one working that night anyways) and she worked tirelessly without lag or break, except of course to talk at length of tea flavors and origins with careful recommendations and warm welcoming smiles.

We got to drink tea all night, try every one. The menu was very well put together, with succinct but very descriptive blurbs for each of 30 teas (the big silver jars above).

It was so perfect after the drive and the walk. Sunlight streamed through the window and gradually filled the room with shades of afternoon.

Fruity Russian Caravan

Base teas Assam and Keemun with an addition of Chinese Lychee tea to give it fruitiness, and small amounts of Lapsang offer a hint of smokiness make this a great afternoon tea.

Organic Yerba Mate

A nutritious stimulate from South America, shade grown in Paraguay to maximize flavor. Embrace your inner revolutionary!

Rooibos Savannah

A shout out to my favorite Southern city! Filled with almonds and cocoa nibs for a delightful and relaxing treat.

As the evening deepened, we set up on the porch facing the downtown strip. We got to try more tea. I think these pictures are suitable for describing the color and timber of the flavors:

Vanilla Honeybush

This one is infused with vanilla beans. Like manna from heaven.

Soul Soother

Chamomile, Lavender, Lemon Balm, Passionflower, Peppermint. Lower your pulse rate, any time of day.

Then we drove to philly... the car over heated... we arrive at 5 am.

we were no longer in the south

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