On Wednesday the 15th, I had booked us a Grayline tour to Monticello.  These are extremely popular but for some reason our bus was only half full so we all had a seat to ourselves which was quite a luxury.  It’s a long way down there but the drive is pretty plus they played a documentary on the video system.  In order to work the timing of things properly, they dropped us off for a half hour or so at the University of Virginia to wander around and check out Edgar Allen Poe’s dorm room.  It amuses me to think of modern day students staying in these rooms (which they still do); rooms with working fireplaces and no bathrooms. 

From there they took us to Michie Tavern for lunch.  It was a bit touristy but better than fast food.  The food was old-style southern like eating at grandma’s and I tanked up on fried chicken and black eyed peas.  I then had to spend a few moments of quiet contemplation in the nearest men’s room but I should not have eaten so much perhaps.  I think it was the biscuits; I have a weakness for and extreme love of biscuits.

We finally wound our way up the mountain to Monticello.  Like many people before me, I was completely taken by the house.  Thomas Jefferson is now my new hero.  After one look at his private rooms, I immediately want to build my own bedroom exactly like it and outfit it with telescopes, microscopes, oil paintings, and books with a gigantic closet upstairs from it.  And also the cool furniture like the revolving book stand with space for five books to remain opened.  He seems a kindred spirit in several ways and the visit made me wish that I could experiment with cool stuff in my own house.  I guess I could but I’m afraid any of my cleverness would be offset by inferior craftsmanship and cause the value of the home to go down and make it hard to sell; something that Jefferson never had to give any thought to.

It was all very inspiring.  I wish I could have known him – I’m sure we’d have things to discuss.  I had time to think of all this on the way home in the bus.  I also thought (and not for the first time) how glad I was that someone else was doing the driving.

We got off at Union Station and walked across the street to the Smithsonian Postal Museum which is a gigantic building with not only a fairly new museum but also a real post office and a Capitol City Brewing restaurant.  This was our destination and we tanked up on more food; a bit more than was warranted perhaps since we had to seek out the Rolaids later on.