A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Charlottesville Wrap Up (Part 2)

Here's the Wrap Up of our last two days in Charlottesville!
And in case you missed it, here's Part 1!

Race Day! Before we left, we fueled up at the free breakfast at our hotel. I love free breakfasts!

Then we drove an hour into the Blue Ridge Mountains to Skylark Lodge so I could run the Ultra Race of Champions 25k. It was absolutely stunning. You can read a race recap and see more pictures here. The short story is the race was actually 17 miles and my legs died on me around mile 10. It was difficult, hot, beautiful, and fun!

After the race, there was some drama. I had just cleaned myself up so we could go to lunch (I was starving at this point) when we realized SOMEONE HAD PARKED ME IN!!!

Why oh why oh whyyyyyy would someone park me in!? We had no clue who's car it was. What if they were running the 100k!? WE COULD BE STUCK HERE FOR HOURS! I will be honest, I let some F-Bombs fly.

Since no one was parked beside the car that parked me in, Paul thought maybe I could get out of the spot by pulling forward and to the right, and then backing out diagonally. But it was so tight. I tried a couple times and I just couldn't do it. I was too afraid I would hit a car. Paul doesn't have his license so even though he wanted to try, he wasn't going to risk it.

Luckily, there was a dude who walked by and noticed what was going on. He wanted to give it a try and I was happy to let him. He just looked like he was a good driver. He had tattoos all over his arms and a wad of chew in his mouth. With Paul's help directing and after several attempts, the guy squeezed my car out of the spot. I thanked him profusely and shook his hand. Thank goodness. But seriously, WHY DO PEOPLE PARK OTHER PEOPLE IN!?

Oh well, food was in our future! We drove to Blue Ridge Brewery. The place was HUGE inside and out. Even though it was gorgeous, it was a bit too hot for us to be outside at this point and we opted to sit inside. Our table was up a long flight of stairs. I was very sore at this point but I hobbled up! We both had huge sandwiches. Mine was a cheeseburger with fries.

Then we went back to our hotel to shower and clean up. But we weren't there for long. Our next stop was downtown Charlottesville where we walked around the historic district as well as the downtown outdoor mall.

While we were there, we found sort of a street party outside a music school. We sat and listened to this awesome band. The lead singer was playing the ukulele!

Charlottesville Courthouse

There were banners all over the mall promoting love. It was a stark reminder of the tragic events of August, when a Unite the Right Rally (aka, a white supremacist hate group) gathered in Charlottesville and clashed with counter protesters. As you may remember, many people were injured and one woman, Heather Heyer, died when a domestic terrorist rammed his car into a group of people. Fourth Street, the scene of the terrorist act, has since been renamed Heather Heyer Way, in honor of the woman who lost her life.

After chilling at the mall for awhile, we went back to our hotel and ordered takeout. Pizza and quesadillas!
On Sunday, we woke up early and took a walk to Starbucks. It felt good to stretch my legs. Then we walked to UVA's campus and marveled at the beauty! First, we checked out the rotunda.

Then we walked around the back of the rotunda where there was The Lawn, a huge open area. On the sides was student housing. I had to Google it, and apparently it is very prestigious to be able to have an apartment on The Lawn. Each apartment had a rocking chair. The apartment doors were decorated to express the occupant.


Just some more cool pics from the Lawn/Rotunda area...

After a quick hotel breakfast, we headed to Monticello.

The tour of Monticello was fascinating. I honestly didn't know much about Thomas Jefferson before the house tour. Now I know enough to know I want to learn more about him. Our tour guide was very knowledgeable and was able to answer all the questions our group had. (We were lucky to get in a small group, which I think you would agree is always a plus!) It was amazing to me that most of the furniture and artifacts in the house were actually Thomas Jefferson's. Our tour guide told us that if he walked into the house today, it would look almost exactly like it did when he lived there.

For only $25 per person, you get a 45 minute house tour of the first floor. There are also slave tours and garden tours on the hour that are included in admission. Our tour guide urged us to take the slave tour. At first I didn't want to because I thought it would upset me, but then I changed my mind and felt that it was vital to have a well rounded view of Thomas Jefferson. However, Paul did not want to take the tour and I could not veto him. So instead we walked around the grounds at our leisure and explored the basement, which you were allowed to do on your own.

After quite a bit of time at Monticello, we drove a few miles up the road to Jefferson Winery. We did the classic wine tasting which included 4 whites and 4 reds. I didn't drink all of my wine because my stomach was a little iffy, plus I had to drive us home that day. I actually didn't really want to taste but I knew Paul wouldn't have as much fun if he was the only one tasting, so I put on my big girl pants and tasted some wine!

I wasn't a huge fan of the wines but it may have been partially due to not really wanting any alcohol due to the stomach bug I had. (It takes awhile for my appetite/stomach to bounce back fully and alcohol is always the last thing I want.) There was a white we both liked so we bought a bottle.

Then we enjoyed peanut butter sandwiches on the outside patio. Paul had a glass of red, and we just fueled up for the drive home. Classy!

After that, it was the long drive home to Pennsylvania! Fun fact, to get to PA from VA, you also have to drive through West Virginia and Maryland! Four states within a 3.5 hour car ride!

We listened to podcasts most of the way home. We were so excited to see the kitties! They were very needy when we got home and continued to be needy for the next couple days. I'm not complaining, I missed them too!

Any horror stories about being parked in?
Have you ever visited UVA's campus?
What about Monticello?


  1. Sounds like a lovely weekend. When I worked for the university I had to plan a field trip for some students to Monticello, and also had to do research on finding descendents of Thomas Jefferson. I remember we did find this one lady and had sent her a DNA kit.

    1. What university did you work for? I love trip planning, it would be fun to plan field trips like that!

  2. What a great ending to your vacation! I can't believe someone parked you in. Totally rude. Rick would have been able to get the car out. He is really good at driving (and like backing huge RVs into our driveway, etc)....the only thing is he follows too closely and I have expressed how I feel about it -- I end up just looking out the side window because it drives me nuts! But he does have good skill at maneuvering vehicles. LOL. You guys were able to see and do a lot. Really wonderful.

    1. RICK IS AN ASS RIDER???? Uh oh.

    2. LOL...well, he is if someone is going slow in the left lane on the interstate. Not just like when we are driving through town or is someone is going the speed limit on the interstate (cuz then we are too and not following). But, yes, if you are going slow and you are in the left, then Rick will crawl right up your ass. And it scares me because even when going slow it's still fast!

  3. This looks like such a fun trip! I got parked in at a restaurant once and had to do some crazy stuff to get my car out. But I was so mad!! Who does that?!

    Are you guys still looking to go to Utah next year? You’re welcome to SLC any time!

  4. Apparently I have been at Monticello, but I don't remember much of it. I do remember more of Mount Vernon, and those tours.

  5. Congratulations on your race!! You look so strong on your finisher photo!

    That burger looks delicious!! was that a hot pepper on top?

    You guys look so cute on that picture at the vineyard!!

    1. Oh thank you so much! Yes that was a pepper, I did not eat it.