We traveled down to Nags Head, North Carolina and then back up to New England. We really, really enjoyed all the different fall views as we drove through New England and the mid-Atlantic. We live in a beautiful country!
We left later than we wanted. We’re driving a new car (one week old!). It was raining, getting dark, and we’re still trying to figure out how to push the right buttons in the car. It was funny. It was pathetic. But we survived!
The original purpose of the trip was a fall “Fish & Chips” outing with friends, held twice each year, spring and fall. Moffett joins friends for some fishing and golfing at the beach. While he played, good friend, Betsy, and I managed to get in a couple of days shopping. In the past we’ve gone to the outlets in Williamsburg, VA. This year, we hit Short Pump, just outside of Richmond and had a great time. Betsy’s into Grandma shopping and it’s fun to look at all the cute (and expensive) stuff for kids these days. Me – Well, I needed some new clothes and having Betsy along made it easy.
What I really wanted was another pair of jeans, just like a pair I bought last spring in Overland Park, KS. I haven’t been able to find them anywhere, here. Sales clerks didn’t even know what I was talking about – they’re Levis, how hard can that be? When I was in San Francisco with Chris, I asked at the Levis store and – story of my life – they’ve been discontinued. While at Macy’s in Short Pump, I found some! So I bought two pairs!
Met up with Moffett and we were off to Springfield, VA. I’ve wanted to go to the Holocaust Museum since it opened and this seemed like a good time. Stayed in Springfield, the hotel had a shuttle to the Metro station and we took the train to within a block or so of the museum. We had NO clue what we were doing at the station but a really nice employee spotted us (who us? tourists?) and helped us purchase our tickets. Getting off at the Smithsonian station, a DC policeman gave us directions to the museum. We spent most of Thursday at the museum. They even have a delightful cafe where we had lunch. There is a security check at the museum and in the cafe. The museum was crowded but not overly mobbed. Lots of school kids along with everyone else. It’s a fascinating, sad, angering, scary, awesome place to visit and I wish we’d had another day to walk through it, and read and listen to more.
The shoes. I will never forget the shoes.
I Saw a Mountain
We are the shoes, we are the last witnesses.
We are shoes from grandchildren and grandfathers,
From Prague, Paris and Amsterdam,
And because we are only made of fabric and leather
And not of blood and flesh, each one of us avoided the hellfire.
Source: Translated by Beatrice Stadtler and Mindele Wajsman in From Holocaust to New Life, edited by Michael Berenbaum (New York: The American Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors, 1985), p. 121.
We had hoped to spend some time in Richmond but – thought it was best to spend more time in Leesburg. We really wanted a couple of days to just “meander” toward the end of our time away. But, first we were headed to Leesburg, VA. Moffett’s almost 89 year old aunt lives there and we wanted to spend more time with her, in addition to some cousin visiting in Front Royal. We normally look for Hampton Inns to stay at but the one in Leesburg was full. We ended up at a Homewood Suites. Perfect! Moffett was able to spend time with his Aunt Louisa. Her TV had died so we purchased a new one and got it all set up. The two of them enjoyed watching football on Sunday while I did some work at the hotel suite. Also got to see his cousin Dick and wife Lorraine on Saturday. Ate too much but – we’re on vacation…
On Monday we were off to follow a new route home – yeah, right. But we did! Went up the east coast, stayed on Rt. 1 as much as possible and it was great. Ended up in Newport, RI. Stayed at a hotel with a fabulous view. We had hoped to do more touristing but – the weather wasn’t cooperating so – we headed to Attleboro, MA to see my Uncle Joe who recently moved to a nursing home. We went to his 90th birthday this year. He’s amazing, has all his “cookies” and very entertaining. It was a great, if short, visit. And then we came home…
Meanwhile, Chris (oldest son) is working in Oakland, CA this week where the protesters, and today, an earthquake, are making his life interesting… He and his brother, the younger one, Kyle, will be at the CHIEF’s game on Monday night. Go Chiefs!