|Poppets On Tour: Birthday Edition!
||[Apr. 2nd, 2009|12:25 am]
|||||The Dark Knight on DVD||]|
My birthday was on Friday (and THANK YOU all for the birthday wishes!!!!!), and my good friend vandaluna drove up with her daughter to pay me a nice extended visit. They arrived late Thursday night and we kicked off the weekend with carryout Ledo's pizza, yum!
Friday was for some local running around, at places like Ikea, G Street Fabrics (oh yeah uh my willpower failed me and i did get a nice wool plaid reduced and on sale for $8/yd bad!) and had crabs and shrimp at a local crab house in Frederick for dinner, quite tasty :-)
Saturday was the first big adventure, we drove out to Fallingwater, one of the most famous Frank Lloyd Wright creations. Driving there straight from Frederick was only about 2.5 hours, which was surprisingly quick, considering it usually takes 3+ hours to drive to Deep Creek which is due south of Fallingwater. But it gave us some time to scout the gift shop early, heh. Fallingwater is a fantastic building, and if you've never seen it, it's definitely worth the trip. The regular tour is about $20, and places along the trails where you can take photos of the house from different vantage points.
Visitors aren't allowed to take photos inside the house, so we had to wait til after the tour to take some photos of the exterior. So Poppet had to wait til we were outside to get a peek:
Really, the big adventure came when we left Fallingwater. vandaluna had never been to Deep Creek (a popular lakeside resort in western MD) so i said why not go since it was so close by. So we put it into the GPS of her car and started off.
Those GPS units are funny. i don't know why it chose to send us off the larger road, to a smaller more twisty one, and even more, i don't understand why it kept us on that small twisty road when we crossed Route 40/National Hwy. My spider-sense started tingling then but i pushed it aside and went with the GPS, cause i wasn't familiar with this area, and i remember last time i was in the car going from Fallingwater to Deep Creek, the GPS sent us on some weird roads too. Uh, but nothing looked familiar.
Then, cause evidently this twisty little road wasn't obscure enough, the GPS sent us off that road onto something that looked like a driveway. An unpaved driveway, kinda like at the farm where i ride, but with larger holes and rocks in it. This driveway, according to the GPS (and Google Earth i found out when we got home) was County Highway 26. Really. There were times when i couldn't even go 5 miles an hour, cause of the holes and rocks, i mean good sized rocks, in the road. A huge hole ahead on the left made me instinctively lean to the right, far enough that vandaluna said,"Careful you'll scratch the car," while i'm thinking, HUGEFREAKINGHOLE here! Big field on the right, possibly one on the left, and all the while the light is fading cause it's late in the afternoon and the sun never really came out.
Well, it did come to an end, into a quasi-residential area, and we made it out, and got to the real highway (I-68), whereupon we saw a sign welcoming us to Garrett County MD. Whaaaaat? Due west from the furtherest-westerest county in MD is..... West Virginia, home of County Highway 26. It all made sense now. (and yes i know people who live in WVA and there are many areas in the state that are beautiful, BUT CO-HWY26 is NOT one of them, see above photo, and write your state highway administration pronto!)
Getting to Deep Creek was straightforward enough, but once we got to the lake, the fog had set in and vandaluna pretty much had to take my word for it that there was really a lake out there beyond the mist. Heh. So we turned around for home. i wasn't able to drive all the way home, i got drowsy somewhere in MD and she took over. We made it home and heated up our leftover crabs and shrimp (i never picked crabs as a kid so i'm very slow at it thus i didn't eat all my crabs the night before, LOL).
Sunday we had a bit of a lie-in, and went antiquing. i was looking for old keys, for steampunk costuming and whatnot. But it was pretty low-key and we couldn't spend all day at it cause places shut down at about 5pm on Sundays. But we had a long day ahead for Monday so we didn't want to be up late anyways.
Monday was a little on the cool side, but Sunday's thunderstorm cleared away most of the clouds, so it was perfect weather for checking out the cherry blossoms in DC. And miracle of miracles, they are supposed to peak between April 1st and 4th, so to be there on the 30th was pretty well timed. Also, we decided not to drive into town, given that there is even less parking than there used to be, yuck!. But we tried out the new station near where my folks live, and really, it's very convenient (well, if i still lived there, hehe).
We took the Metrorail to the Smithsonian station, which put us on the Mall, between the Washington Monument and the Capitol building. Now i am *not* Yoga Girl like vandaluna is, so i'm out of shape and not used to walking, but i had my cane with me, and that helped a lot. But i walked a LOT this weekend, heh. Anyways, i had Poppet with me, and for the cherry blossoms, i also brought Poppet and Foppet "Loves You" since they're PINK!
Here is Poppet inspecting the Washington Monument. This is a camera phone photo so it's a bit blurry, i've been experimenting with the different settings on my regular camera to find a good compromise between the diminutive Poppet and the larger backgrounds....
There were a few cherry trees around the Washington Monument, and a handy wall that Poppet and Foppet Loves You could pose on in front of them. Uh, doesn't it always happen that you take a picture and look at it later and see something sticking out of your cousin's head? Sheesh. Poor Foppet...
We walked around one side of the Washington Monument on our way to the Tidal Basin, and i snagged this photo:
Looks so peaceful doesn't it? You can't tell that i had to wait for a bunch of tour buses to clear the street first and hope i could snap my photo before more traffic appeared :-O
One of the trees near that section had a nice fork in the limbs, and Poppet Loves You fit in very nicely as she contemplated the cherry blossoms:
i think it's my favorite photo. Doesn't do the real thing justice though, with the breeze blowing the blossoms around (um and Poppet, too, she jumped out of the tree at one point, heh).
Foppet wanted to join in the fun, so i found another tree more suitable for Poppet's four-footed companion. And it was fun taking photos from below, as it were.
Here is a lovely old tree, arching over the railing on one side. vandaluna is on the far right side, taking a photo of me taking a photo. Funny looking!
This tree had buds on the trunk:
We didn't walk around the entire Tidal Basin. Uh, did i mention i'm out of shape and can't keep up with Yoga Girl? Heh. So we walked back the way we came, and this time i spied What looked like Charlie Brown's famous "Kite-eating" tree:
Note there is one kite in the very top and one in the bottom left of the tree. No they are not my kites :-)
We took a brief detour through the Museum of American History (very brief cause we were meeting my folks for dinner), but it was very nice. i need to go back. Crossing the mall on our way to the Metro station, Yoga Girl was inspired to do a pose in front of the Capitol building:
Metro is the way to go, especially when you're tired from walking all weekend. Let them do the driving, as they say. We met my folks for dinner at a nearby IHOP (yay Fruit Crepes!), and since there was a teeny bit of light left, we toured parts of the neighborhood where vandaluna and child used to live when they lived in MD.
She and her daughter left in the pre-dawn darkness Tuesday morning, kinda like a hurricane that tears through a town. And i say that with love :-)