Thursday, July 29, 2010

Vacation: Wrap-Up

Now that I've unpacked, done laundry, changed back from travel purse to everyday purse, and written thank-you notes, my vacation is officially over. Well, writing this final vacation blog post and putting a photo album on Webshots and Facebook, and then it will be over. The photos will take me several more days, since I go back to work today.

A few miscellaneous notes on this vacation ~

  • a sparkling, flaming hurray! for Marriott properties
  • a sputtering, lukewarm okay for Thrifty car rental
  • many colorful, pyrotechnic oohs and aahs for the beauty and history of Virginia

Still haven't finis
hed reading the novel I took on vacation. Glad I traded reading time for visiting time though. Francoise and I did read Why Not, Lafayette?, the short book she bought me so that we could learn why Lafayette kept popping up in presidents' homes. Portraits, plaster busts, and anecdotes of Lafayette seemed to be everywhere, and now we know why.

Like Thomas Jefferson bringing France home with him in the form of ideas, architecture, horticulture, cuisine, I want to bring Virginia home with me. I'm sure going to try to replicate the Inn at Meander Plantation's sweet white corn soup. I'll make sandwiches by spreading basil pesto on on
e piece of bread and olive tapenade on the other, an idea borrowed from the Smithsonian's cafe. I'll try making my own mayonnaise; I don't have Cock and Bowl's recipe, but I have Julia Child's! Joan's pasta sauce and salad dressing are must-tries. Francoise's tomates farcies from her last dinner in our home will be delightful to repeat, especially when our garden tomatoes pop. I now have a stunning mug, made by Joan, to enjoy my tea in. And Google will be smokin' by the time I look up all the questions our presidential tours sparked. (Plus, I've added a few books to my wish list, family and friends!) Next spring, I'll be excited to plant flower and vegetable seeds I bought at Monticello and Montpelier.

Oh, and I still need to discard miscellaneous ticket stubs and notes, like the list of things I wanted to do with Francoise while she was in the Chicago area. We made it to the lively Grayslake farmers market and downtown Libertyville, and we took several pleasant walks and picked peas and beans ~ nothing postcard-worthy. We never made it to the Museum of Science and Industry or Chicago Theatre or outdoor concerts or Cantigny. Hope she'll visit Chicago again so that we can see and do more here. We toyed with the idea of going to a county fair but didn't make it to any of those either. Francoise's longest, heartiest laugh of the whole vacation came on the way to the airport yesterday when I consoled her about missing a county fair by assuring that next time she comes, we will milk a goat. Okay, so I guess that isn't on everyone else's dream list. ;-)


Christine said...

Sounds like you guys had such a fun time, despite the heat! Can't wait to see the pictures. The stories make me miss the good ol US of A.

tandemingtroll said...

I am so glad that you had a great time. I missed seeing you when I was in Chicago last week. It was too short of a visit. I keep consoling myself of all the time I will get to spend with family and friends in heaven someday.