Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Chilling (or is it Sweating) in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia

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There are two places we love to stop at every other year when we return to the east coast. The first is a stop in North Carolina to visit our daughter Katie. Just north of Katie’s home is the second stop which is at our friend's farm in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.

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We spent a month at the farm last year to house sit for them and this year we are just enjoying our stay for a few weeks. Our visit this year is later in the summer than at past visits and as such it is a lot hotter and drier than we remember. Nevertheless it is still a very beautiful place to sit back and relax.

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Each morning Sharon and I have breakfast and lounge around a bit before heading outside for our morning walk. We walk down the hillside into the Shenandoah Valley until we cross the Shenandoah River. From there we can check on the two rental properties our friend has on his farm and address any issues that may need our attention. The mountains on the east side of the farm remain vibrant and green Sharon often refers to them as looking like fresh broccoli.

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We have been treated to several interesting sightings during our walks. We observed several deer along with some young newborn fawns by their sides. We also saw a bald eagle soaring about the valley on a couple of our walks. The coolest critter we saw was a ground hog swimming across the Shenandoah River.

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Another great sighting occurred one morning as we were crossing the small bridge over the Shenandoah River. As we looked to our left there in the middle of the water was a doe standing “knee” deep in the river. What made this interesting was that she was gorging herself on the freshwater grasses growing in the river. We stayed and watched her eat for about 10-15 minutes. She wasn’t the least bit worried about us as we were apparently perceived to be of no danger.

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Each day at the farm ends with another fabulous view of the valley below and the changing natural lighting creating different palettes of green. Happy hour then a great home cooked dinner on the back deck while looking our over the luscious Shenandoah Valley is a great way to spend our time.  We never tire of the beautiful expanse of mountain and valley scenery.

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NOTE: We will stay here in the Shenandoah Valley until the end of the month and then move on northward.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Sometimes you have to go with the flow…

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Our two night stay in Martinsville, VA was over it was time to move on but i sure am going to miss this scenic spot we had on the Smith River. It was nice being able to go right behind our RV and try my luck at a little trout fishing. I didn’t catch anything but sure had fun trying!

Our next planned stop was Harrisonburg, VA. Notice I said planned and “was”… When we pulled into the Rockingham Fairgrounds just south of Harrisonburg we were greeted with all theimage gates closed. No one answered the office phone and there was no way to leave a message nor was there any emergency contact information. We had contacted the park on a previous workday but due to miscommunication between Sharon and I we didn’t send in our preregistration papers to ensure someone would be there to let us in. Combine that with the fact the last time we stayed here we simply parked in a site and paid later…Oh well....

Anyhow since we weren’t going to be able to stay in Harrisonburg we called our friend from Toms Brook Virginia to see if it was okay to show up three days early at their farm in the Shenandoah Valley. They are not at the farm but said, Sure, come on up” and so we continued north another 60 or so miles to the farm.

imageWe have house sat for them here before and will do so again until the end of the month. We love staying at their farm outside of Toms Brook Virginia and look forward to this extended stay. We will do a few things around the farm to repay our most kind benefactors for their generosity in letting stay at their farm.

Our first day at the farm we unloaded the food from our fridge so we would have something to eat during our stay. We also did the owners a favor and took all the trash from their two rental units to the dump. Otherwise we spent the last few days ogling out the picture windows at the views of the Shenandoah River, the Shenandoah Valley and rolling mountains on the other side of the river. Fantastic!

Yes, our life is rough on the Road of Retirement…

NOTE: We will stay here in the Shenandoah Valley until the end of the month and then move on northwards.