Monday, February 28, 2005

Hi devoted CRM readers. In case you did not notice, I been away for awhile. I actually tried to post a piece about 10 days ago, but Blogger continues to displays bouts of discrimination against Mac users, and no matter what I did, it would not publish my meanderings from the month of February.

I went away for a week of R&R with a priest friend of mine from the Diocese of Allentown. My parents bought a time-share last year and had a bonus week to use up by March, and they graciously gave it to their loving son. I cashed it in for a week in Williamsburg, VA. I tried to go someplace warmer, but they were all booked. The main goal was just to get away from the ringing phones. A time-share is basically an apartment you rent for a week or so; this one was a nice two bedroom one. Actually they apparently had a lot of activities at this place, but we opted to to rest, did a lot of reading, and explored some of our nation's history.

First let me say, that based on the "off-season" ticket price to get a badge for Colonial Williamsburg, history is not cheap. Wow! it was nearly $30/person for a 1-day pass. We opted to just walk around the "town". What was truly a bargain was the combo ticket for the Jamestown Visitors' Center and Yorktown Victory Center. I highly recommend spending time at both locations. It was $17 for the combo, and you did not have to do both on the same day. In fact, we were not sure if we wanted to do both and they told us to get the pass for just the one (Jamestown) for $11.75, hold on to our receipt, and if we went to Yorktown just show it and ask for the upgrade. Both sites had very nicely organized galleries for looking at artifacts from the respective sites, nice information, a decently done short film -- all before you got to the main attraction. At Jamestown first you go through a reconstructed Powhatan Native American village. There "interpreters" (historical actors) did a fine job explaining some of the basics of Powhatan life, you could even ground corn if you wanted (it was too early to work the fields). Then we went to the replicas of the three ships which brought the settlers in 1607. You could pretty much go all over the ships, and an the interpreters were exceedingly knowledgeable and friendly. Finally we went to the reconstruction of the actually fort; again you could go all over, handle different objects, watch tradesmen work. The actually site of the fort was thought to have sunk into the James River, but has been recently discovered and is about a mile from the reconstructed one. We spent nearly 4 hours there. Yorktown was the same basic format; this time it was a troop camp and a colonial farm.

Today I spent the day finding my desk under a pile of mail, and addressing issues that had been awaiting my return. As we are expecting a snowstorm, and the cook was off, I cooked dinner for the four of us -- hopefully there will still be four of us in the morning. The one thing that nearly brought a tear to my eye from my vacation (besides a visit to the "new" St. Bede's parish in Williamsburg which epitomizes all that is HORRIBLE in modern "worship space" design, but that is another blog piece, to correspond with a marvelously designed new church which my friend is stationed at) was that as we were driving back a stone was kicked up and cracked the windshield of my NEW car (only 4 weeks old today). It is good to be back.

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