Montpelier Wine Festival 05/03/2014 and Corbin Cabin Hike 05/04/2014

Finals for the spring semester took place last week.  This however, by no means, meant I skipped out on having fun over the weekend. It just meant I took a little longer to write about my endeavors.  I…can’t remember what I did on Friday, the  2nd of May. So, let’s conclude, I did something related to tennis, drinking, hiking, or fishing. On second thought, fishing evaded me that weekend, because, and only because, my girlfriend said I do it too much and our relationship suffers due to said activity. I’m not really arguing; I really like fishing. We’ll leave it at that.

Saturday my girlfriend and I attended the Montpelier Wine Festival at the Estate of James Madison.  The weather remained nice, a little on the hot side, but after the long, cold, snowy winter I doubt anyone complained.  I only wish I wore and outfit a little more comfortable.  Yet, the wine tasted nice, as did the fat cigar between my lips.  After a few hours of tasting, which took place in the large field in the front of President Madison’s property, we decided to take a closer look at the living quarters and their surroundings.  With my wine buzz still intact and my shoes in my hand, we walked around.  I found myself thinking, “This is nice. Nothing specials, but nice”.  Now, don’t get me wrong, I like history and historical sites. I really want to visit Monticello, the home of the great, Thomas Jefferson, but currently I’m in fishing mode. After being told several times to shut up about fishing and enjoy the event, I found myself desiring the rod in hand, the water at foot, and the fish around the bend. Then I found it; I found the view. From the front steps of Montpelier I beheld the breathtaking and utterly refreshing view of the Blue Ridge Mountains to the west. I asked the few individuals who accompanied my girlfriend and me if they could imagine waking up to this every morning? I could; the day immediately went from one which lacked fishing to one not wasted. I located happiness or at least tranquility for a few moments. That’s a special feeling and one that I seldom get from anything other than nature.

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‘Twas a nice view

Sunday began late due to sleeping in, which I enjoyed. I probably studied for a bit before we (my girlfriend and I) headed out the door to hike somewhere in the Shenandoah National Park. Looking back on it I wonder if my view from Montpelier captured the park at all. I convinced my brother to join us on the hike and in turn, he convinced the dogs to tag along.  Jubal, my parents’ 150 lb. Great Dane and Widget, my brother’s Harrier hopped in the back of the Subaru and we headed for the Old Rag Parking Area.  We hiked the Nicholson Hollow Trail.  I enjoyed having the dogs with us, but the trail followed the river.  It killed me not to fish. Again, don’t get me wrong, I like hiking and I like my girlfriend, but I have fly fishing fever!

Jubal had a rough time getting the hang of crossing the streams.  Large builders placed across it just seemed like objects of hindrance to him rather than a way to stay dry.  I feared he would cut his legs while slipping and sliding through the streams.  Thankfully he learned by observation (classical conditioning?) and crossed with ease on the way back.  He also likes to walk himself by holding the leash in his mouth.  Because he possesses great strength, we found it easier to just throw his leash around his neck. He stays close and technically he stays on a leash. So we break no rule, which is nice.

I hiked this same trail last spring with my brother and it always takes longer than we anticipate.  When we reached the cabin we ate lunch on a rock which sat in the stream and relaxed for a few minutes.  After getting back from the hike, I studied some more.

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Jubal, checking out the surroundings while we ate

Overall, the weekend received a B+ in my book.  It could have been worse; it could have been raining. The view from Montpelier excited me.

-Bram

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