Last evening I pedaled out from Robbi’s house during a brief lull in the rain, and the landscape was lush and amazingly beautiful. I had to take a photo, even just from her parking area, to capture the feel.
When I then cycled through downtown before arriving at my new hosts’ place just northwest of town, the rain was misting, giving the area a saturated look.
Today, though, the sun came back out again, and despite a very mild chill in the air that kept me inside until late morning, it turned out to be a gorgeous day.
I explored all around town, including the local natural-foods store (since 1975) where I looked for, and found, the Twin Oaks tofu. I had hoped they would have a deli section where I could sample sandwiches or salads made with that tofu, but unfortunately there was only a juice bar. I’m glad I did get to taste it at Living Energy Farm.
I also visited several local parks, with both forested and open spaces. The sunlight made everything beautiful.
When I reached downtown, I enjoyed walking the iconic Charlottesville brick-laid pedestrian mall. I stopped for lunch at the all vegan Botanical restaurant, and even visited local bike shop Blue Wheel Bicycles, where my bike got a once-over, the chain got cleaned up a bit, and I walked away with some new chain lube.
Finally, I headed over to the University of Virginia. I had visited this campus in the late ‘80s, when I was looking at colleges to attend. I had only a faint memory of that tour, but I think I did recognize the quad when I saw it today. Of course Jefferson’s signature domed architecture makes an important appearance on the campus, and it was beautiful to sit beneath a tree and enjoy the architecture and atmosphere.
Then I headed back to my hosts’ place, where we had a lovely dinner. After dinner, JoAnn gave me a tour of the yard, which was in beautiful bloom at this time of year. They have lived in this 1928 house for 40 years, so they had put lots of effort into the front and back landscaping, including many native plants.
I topped off the evening and waning light with a refreshing outdoor shower. What a neat experience!
Tomorrow I’ll be up earlier than usual to catch the train to Washington, DC. I’m excited to see friends, and do some more sightseeing and vegan dining!
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