This farm could well be one of my favourite places in the world. This little girl could well be one of my favourite little girls. I was first at this place in 2011, kindly allowed to stay there with the slipware entourage during the Fredericksburg stint. It is beautiful.
Although this is only my second visit there it feels so familiar. It’s pretty magical waking in the morning to a cacophony of unfamiliar birds and insects. The farm was strewn with cases of the seventeen year cicadas which had all been hatching out, their wings were like jewels in the sunshine.
I was invited to join Emily and her friends as they celebrated one of their number’s birthday. Don’t worry said Mr Finnegan, they’ll all be home by nine, it’ll not be a late night. Ha! I started by riding Dan’s very flat tyred beach bike with a group of beautiful women through the streets if Fredericksburg. I felt like I was on a film set, especially later in the evening as we cycled back in the dark laughing hysterically.
Needless to say that by nine o’clock we were nowhere near home and in fact the night had barely begun. I watched but did not partake in the hideous looking episode of the Flaming Volcano before we went to play pool and eventually ended up in the basement of someone’s house listening to a band. So come half past two as Emily and I sat in the driveway back at the house I had to laugh at Dan’s early reassurances.
Here is the one part of the family that live on the farm, nice collection of pots on the stove behind them there.
On my last night we ate a meal with them and then settled down to watch a film on the porch surrounded by bull frogs and cheeping chirping insects.
So the journey had taken Dan and I from the cold leaflessness of Minnesota that had barely entered spring through flat lands and tended fields into the mountains of West Virginia and finally into the green humidity of a full on Virginian spring. It’s an odd feeling knowing that I was in the same country as so many of my friends but having not a hope of seeing them all due to the sheer scale of the place. The other strange thing is that in my head I hear myself speak clear and completely proper and correct English, judging by the many blank looks that I received though it became obvious to me that this is actually not quite the case.