Sunday, May 1, 2011

公佈 5 號 (you follow the pattern by now)

Music has a major part in my life. Often a single song can effect my entire day. This song by Dave Mason set me in the mood for this post so perhaps you will listen as you read. Sorry for the bimbo in the beginning that ruins the entire lead up Dave is going for. The song rocks though and is something I try hard to do every single day of my life.

We shipped out of Ocracoke to begin the journey North again. The week was coming to an end and honestly I needed to do something besides RELAX.

The ferries were unusually empty unlike the previous times we used them. I think bike week was over and traffic had thinned out. Maybe the Outerbanks was trying to make our leaving easier.

The terns even guided us off the island.

Ava wanted me to know I need to touch up the polish on Anna. She is such a teen now. The cold water showers at the camp ground were labeled "unacceptable" and thus required me to buy an extra 100 foot hose to actually reach the spigot. A hundred foot hose at an island hardware store... bend me over, here it comes. We had to fill the tank often. My girls all use way too much water.

The aliens in Frisco said bye to us also.

Is that triple legal? These folks from Texas think so. You are looking at 75 plus feet of rig going down the road.

Our next camp site was New Port News Park. This was the first place we ever camped at with Anna. Halle fell out of the trailer and busted her head on the asphalt here. The WDCU was having it's installation rally and we had a great time despite the head crackin. That was over four years ago and my God have priorities changed in my life. As then, once again, I highly recommend this place. Very nice wooded sites and clean, clean, clean. Not as much privacy here, and when busy, it would be rather crowded. This is still far more space than afforded in any KOA. New Port News is a great launching off point to see the Historic Triangle. That is what they call Yorktown, Jamestown and Williamsburg. When in Rome, do as the tourists do.

We first hit Yorktown. This is where one of the most decisive battles of the Revolutionary War was fought. We opted to hit the National Park instead of paying to enter the Yorktown Victory Center. The Victory Center is a commercial venture that has a location at Jamestown also. I suspect they also control Williamsburg. The kids ran up and down the earthworks while we tried to figure how the movie version of the battle worked into where we were.

The collection of cannons was very nice. I was struck though by how little information there was on the battle field itself. I guess there is no money for signs here to at least give a little info on what happened where. Yorktown was very important to the entire Revolutionary War. A little more importance to the site is needed in my opinion. Maybe if the Park Service turned it into another Disney Land it might get a few signs and some guys in stuffed soldiers uniforms shaking hands with Mickey.

We next visited Jamestown. The real Jamestown, not the recreated one. Here is a bronze model of what the settlement was like in the day.

We were fortunate to arrive just as Sara the Chicken Lady began her tour. She was a perfect enactor that never once stepped out of character. Her colorful insights into Jamestown life really brought it to life for us. She was an indentured servant brought over to care for her Masters chickens. The short and skinny; we got it real good.

Very recently archeologists found the actual Fort that historian thought had been lost to the river. The walls are exactly where the original ones were. It is amazing to walk the same streets that such early Americans did.

It was a very tough life here at Jamestown and most of the settlers died behind these walls.

Captain Smith was a resident that went on to chart much of the Eastern parts of North America. As a teen I read his journals. John Smith had big balls and a jumbo sized horse shoe was imbedded up his back side. He skated death many times and lived a life of high adventure. He was helped by Pocahantis.

Not sure why she guided him. I guess love is blind. Maybe she liked a guy in uniform. How history could had been changed had her people not helped the English. We would have been speaking Spanish 300 years ago instead of today.
Moving on...
To happy hour... We not only ate very well, we managed to have happy hour each and every afternoon. Hey, now, we are civilized Neanderthals! We, we, we. Who is we?

Amanda at the beginning of happy hour. Always with that warm inviting smile.

Me during happy hour. Yes, short hair. I cut it all off. Short, clean cut, even mistaken as "the Man" Yep, Someone took me as an undercover cop. If your reading Rob, it is shorter than yours.

Now Don knows how to have a real happy hour. I want to use this venue to announce my astounding love for Don. He is truly a great friend, and I am so honored to know him. In case he does not realize I feel this way, now he does. Don always lives up to Dave Mason's song.

Beth, my wonderful wife. She ponders the lack of reservations and total lack of a plan. Though totally out of her comfort zone, she was such a trooper.

Troopers? That is Ron Vance. Ron lives 15 minutes from me. We have talked via email a few times. Of all places, I run into him here. Nice 70's rig there, I suspect it is a Cali unit though. Just joking, I love Cali trailers.

We also went to Williamsburg. I will apologize right now. I came to distain Williamsburg in 6 short hours.

You will notice the badges we are all wearing. Without a badge $38/ day badge you see nothing except the street. Somewhere in the past 13 years since we came here, Williamsburg has become a Disney type attraction. You wait in long lines to be funneled into a gift shop followed by a 30 second ride. Sorry, you Disney fans, but that is the experience at both places for me. Spend a bunch of money to wait in a que to spend more money for a brief experience. When we were here before, one could walk around freely. There was not a costume shop on every corner trying to sell to the kids. There was not a family entrance fee equal to a days pay either. I guess I am either getting cheap or places are feeling more exploitive to me. Williamsburg has truly become one of those places for me.I hope the money they pried out of me was worth it, because I will probably never return even though this period in our history fascinates me the most.

During this time, a man built his entire house using an axe. An axe was the one and only tool a settler would need to provide everything for his family.

Hand split singles look like nothing a machine can produce. He and his children might spend a year splitting singles and three foot long boards to build a house. Everything was done by ones self. A pound of nails was worth a years wage for a frontier settler.

Houses were small and everyone lived in the house. Often livestock did also.

If he had some money, he might afford an adz to turn logs into cabin sides.

If he was really put together, he might afford a city house like this one.

This guy was very put together. Each addition is another generation. Which house do think was the first generation? The smallest one.

Every board was made by hand. No power tools, lumber yards, or saw mills back them. Just men and lots of time.

Even the paint was made using elbow power. Pure iron oxide and linseed oil. Crude but very effective.

But the law was made by the men of means. This building(the original burnt down three times) was where they wrote such laws to govern us all. It is also from this building that the choice to not follow the rule of the crown occurred. A beautiful building it is and the subtle colors of the woodwork really caught my eye.

I am sorry if in any way I detracted from your Williamsburg experience. I tried my best to get it off my chest as quick as possible and move on. Go, see it for yourself, just transfer some savings into checking before you go. Practice a great deal of patience also.

Everyone of us had a great time none the less. There is something at Williamsburg well worth the cost. At the edge of the historic district is the Rockefeller Folk Arts Museum. As previously, it was high on the list of must sees for us.

I love all the weather vanes on display.

It is a rather extensive collection.

Things like this are just not made any more and those that are will last a fraction of the time these have.

Nor will they be collected someday.

Advertising will never be the same either.

The carvers are all computer driven now. Very few craftsman can do this work today.

Why bother to learn how, the Chinese will do it cheaper until the skills are all gone .

You looking at me? I don't think your looking at me. Stop looking at me.

The carousel animals are all made of fiberglass now.

And very few artist can release the soul trapped in a block of wood.

We are all seeking our block of gold the easiest way possible these days.

Even Saint Nicholas is a part of this change. Man, what a dour note I have gotten off on. Sorry.

If you love folk art like I do, the collection here is awesome. It is not for everyone, but for me, it is special.

This is my favorite object. It is a record player.

When cranked up, not only does it play music, but it's tongue moved back and forth to give the feeling it is singing. It also winks it's eye every now and then. People just do not build things like this any more. We were so glad to have visit the collection again.

We made a correct turn going back to the campground and happened upon this place. It is a commercial venture called Presidents Park. It was closed and had little appearance of opening soon.

We almost jumped the fence. The fence had a huge hole in it and there was not one sign warning of trespassing. Ava was so worried about getting caught that we didn't. Ava is the one in the group that follows the rules. She is a good kid.

There just might be another post coming. I promise to have a more positive attitude next time.


Someday'59 said...

I adore the photos of the Folk Arts Museum.

Staying on the right side of the fence would have been a hard rule to follow!

What a great trip!

Lance said...

Great post Frank. Love the pics. Looks like y'all had a great trip.