Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Monticello Trail Wine and Jazz Festival 2005

Looks too fancy to be full of drunk people, huh?

As promised, a recap of Saturday's idyllic day out in Charlottesville (album here). Pam and I hit the road fairly early and took a back roads path that she used in her undergrad days at UVa. We stopped at a farmer's market to buy fall fare like Injun corn and wee pumpkins, and had to turn down repeated offers for a hayride. In the Bible it says thou shalt share thy tractor. We also passed the famed Orange County airport, home to most local skydiving endeavors, and were going by just as a brace of jumpers were landing. God bless the high shutter speed that compensates for taking pictures from inside a moving veee-hicle.

We rolled up to the festival (held at the Boar's Head Inn) around 12:30, grabbed a chalice, and got to work. The finery of wine festivals (wee tastes, swirling the wine, appreciating the bouquet) are lost on me. I forgot, going in, that this was supposed to be about sampling rather than just drinking alotta wine outside instead of in. My bad. But I put on my best manners and did the dance. I'd say we tried about 30 different wines and I was most tickled to find a couple good fruit wines--I've been trying to lock down a good strawberry wine since Deanna Carter introduced me to the concept--so I purchased one of those, a pear, a green apple, and then an excellent dry white.

Lunch consisted of fresh focaccia and dill cheese and the people watching afforded by the vantage point depicted above. We also ogled the crafts and jewelry (one bracelet was a cool $1300) and then roamed the nearby golf course to work off our buzz before heading into town. I insisted on the full cheesy UVA tourist experience and so we parked near The Corner and wandered campus near the Rotunda and Rugby Road. I saw Poe's old dorm room, but I also saw vomit from Friday night, so I think that's all ends of the spectrum covered, don't you? Notice the hideous Wahoo threads for sale, I assume to be sported at the football games, along with an upturned collar. Because 1983 NEVER DIES.

We had dinner at an awesome patioed restaurant called the Buddhist Biker Bar and Grill. I had the Stealth Burger--the onion, bacon, and cheese are *inside* the patty--and a killer rosemary/potato soup that had enough garlic in it for Bram Stoker to be appeased. We finished up with locally-made frozen yogurt and then hit the road sated, but weary.

Good thing that Virginia State Trooper pulled us over or else we might have fallen asleep from lack of excitement. He felt that PEbs passed a couple cars injudiciously (I couldn't disagree more) but he made quite the show of it, making her get out of the car and sit in the cruiser, asking some harassing questions along the way. I would put it up to quotas, but it was the beginning of the month so really, the whole thing seems to be a combo of a bored cop and quiet country road. He let us go with a warning, but suffice it to say any energy we had was eaten in that 15 minute adrenaline spike.

Still, even with that bit of annoyance, what a great day. Perfect weather and activities for a Saturday in autumn. I wish commuting weren't such a serious ass pain or else I'd be getting myself a Culpeper zip code wid a quickness.


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