Saturday, April 7, 2012

From Gettysburg to Williamsburg..........Again and Again!

Before I forget again, the name of that fabulous painting in yesterday's blog is the was on the tip of my tongue when I started typing.  I had it in my head several times today!  Well, in case I don't add it before I end this entry, I can at least add a photo of the building that houses it.  I failed to mention that there is a very fine museum attached to this cyclo-thing, too.  We spent about an hour yesterday in the museum, and learned a lot about Gettysburg.  I will add the picture of the cyclo-building/ museum. It is actually the new zillion dollar Visitor Center of Gettysburg, which has moved out away from the downtown area. I bet you can guess which part holds the circular painting.

We awoke at our motel which was The Quality Inn at General Lee's Headquarters.  We took the tour of the small museum in the actual headquarters, saw the former barn that housed Lee's beloved horse, Traveller, during those three days of battle, and met the loveliest lady named Kathryn who runs the gift shop.  She told me that about 1997  a Civil War soldier's remains were discovered by men excavating for the railroad near our motel, and that a full military funeral was given for this soldier. Kathryn actually met the relatives of the soldier (I did not ask how they recognized him.) and they stayed at our motel for the funeral days.   I must look this up and find out more.

The museum held interesting artifacts. My favorite was a photo of a survivor of the battle who then showed off his leg, and had it photographed, to show his wounds. There was also a Confederate belt buckle which had a bullet hole through it. The belt buckled had saved a young soldier's life.

I had purchased a CD audio tour of the Gettysburg Battlefield.  It has two disks, and takes two hours, according to the box and other tourists.  It took US nearly FOUR hours to follow this tour...........we are tour-challenged, apparently.  We had to backtrack, get out of the car at all "major events," and we each had our own idea of what qualified as "major." And of course we had to take five or six photos of everything.  Randy had to climb two towers to look over everything, even though he had climbed those same towers the last time.  I was taking 300 photos to make a slide show production for my students.  We might have been slow, but we were thorough.  I did convince Randy to skip one stop on the that point I was staring at my watch, knowing we had a four-hour drive ahead of us.

But, before we left town, we went to the Farnsworth House and had an icy cold beer at the Sweney's Tavern, which is part of the house. It was quaint and fun with period-dressed servers. When the film Gettysburg was being filmed, the actors and crew of the film spent a lot of time in this tavern. There were movie items in glass cases on one wall, and a framed poster for the film near the bar. The autographs and 'thanks for good times' notes surrounded the photo, and I had to take a close-up shot of Sam Elliot's notation! It was worth the stop.....................
Then, Thelma led us out of Gettysburg onto Rt. 15S, and we drove directly to Williamsburg, where we have a room about a fourth of a mile from Colonial Williamsburg. This is our fourth visit to Williamsburg, VA. Last year you might remember that we strolled the streets one morning for an hour, and then went on. This year we are going to do the same thing, but it's a good place to find motels and good food. We have stopped at Pierce's Barbecue in Lightfoot, VA, a mile out of Williamsburg for years. It has become "tradition." Today we broke that tradition, and decided to have a more elaborate dinner, since out lunch had been hurriedly eaten at a Tour Stop beneath a Civil War soldier statue.
We put our "stuff" into the motel room, combed our hair, and drove the two blocks to Christiana Campbell's Tavern.  We ate seafood and pasta, enjoyed the music of a Scottish singer and guitarist, took a few barbs from the Christiana Campbell impersonator who asked if Randy had planted his crops yet, and if not why was he vacationing!  We are now happily situated for the night.

P.S.   The name of the round painting place is CYCLORAMA.   It came back to me.................Cheers!