Beth and I thought we should blog a his side / her side point of view about our recent vacation. So when you finish this, skip over to Beths page to see her take on it.
The following are actual events from our weekend trip to Williamsburg, VA.
Day One: The trip there
After Beth got off work, we dropped the kids off at my parents house and were on the road headed to Williamsburg by 4:00pm. Now much like George Constanza, I love to make great time. Map quest said the trip should take 4 ½ hours, so that is my time to beat.
We arrived at our hotel at 8:30pm. Thats 4 ½ hours for those of you who are time challenged. But that included stopping to eat at Cracker Barrel, so our actually the driving time was around 3 hours and 45 min. I had made great time!!!! It was really nice to ride, talk, and eat with Beth without having to concentrate so much of our time on the kids. We stayed at a place in colonial Williamsburg called the Governors Inn. I figured if it was nice enough for the governor then it would be nice enough for us. The room was clean and simple, which is all we ask for in a hotel/motel. Were not into staying at a fancy place. Just give us a clean room and running water and were happy. The highlight of staying at the Governors Inn came at 12:30am when our room started shaking and it sounded like a tornado was coming right for us. I jumped out of bed to see what was going on and as I opened my curtain I saw a long, loud passenger train less then 100 yards from us. It came by again at 2:30, 4:30, and 6:30. Why was this a highlight and not a lowlight? Because each time I laid in bed listening to the train go by, all I could think of was My Cousin Vinny. Theres a scene where he is woken up at 3am by a train. The next day he asks the guy at the front desk if this always happens then guy says no, its rare. The next night it comes by at 2:30am. When Vinny asked the guy again why the train came when he said it was rare, the man answers, Its rare at 3am, it usually comes at 2:30am. Funny stuff. But again, if this place was nice enough for the governor, its nice enough for us.
Day Two: Busch Gardens
After breakfast we head out to spend the day at Busch Gardens. Instead of boring you and me with every minute-by-minute detail, Ill just hit on the highs and lows of the day:
- Getting stuck on the Lochness Monster ride first thing. The park opened in sections and the first part to open was Scotland, which had the famous Lochness Monster roller coaster. We rode it once and still had time to ride it again before the next group of countries opened. We were 2/3 though the ride when it just stopped on this hill. Beth and I were eye level to the top of the surrounding trees. They came over the speakers and said they were having technical difficulties and wed be going again shortly. 20 min later were still sitting on the hill. Beth was worried but I calmed her fears by assuring her this kind of things happens all the time. Then a girl came out through the woods. I thought she might be one of the others but she really worked there. She told those of us that were near the back of the coaster that a guy was coming to help get us out and wed have to walk down the coaster to get out and that everything would be fine. She then asked if we could pass it along to the people at the front so they would know. Since no one started passing it along, I yelled out, She said were all going to die!!! She didnt find that funny. Either did the kid up front that started crying. They eventually got us down and as a way of saying they were sorry, they gave us a free pass to the ride of our choice to use to jump to the front of the line all day long. I thought that was cool but Beth wanted more. Just like a woman.
- The chariot ride. By far one of the 3 best roller coasters I have ever ridden. Its listed as one of the top 10 metal roller coasters in the world. It has my vote.
- Irish dance show. Beth and I must be getting older because not only did we want to ride the rides, we also wanted to take in the shows. There was this amazing Lord of the dance type show we went to. We had seen the real LOTD a few years ago and these people were just as good.
- The park itself. Unlike Carowinds which is an amusement park built on a huge parking lot, Busch Gardens was built around thousands of trees and streams. It has been voted the most beautiful amusement park in the world for the past 10 years and it shows.
- As good as the Irish dance show was, The secrets of OSullivans castle was equally as bad. It was the cheesiest play I have ever seen. We deserved a free pass ticket after having to sit through that crap for 30 min.
- DarKastle. It was built up as thee big new ride for the summer and it was a major let down. It was one wee you had to wear 4-D glasses as your car went through a haunted castle. Very weak.
Day Three: Colonial Williamsburg
- Just walking around Williamsburg. The day was not rushed and since we had been there before, Beth and I could take our time and not feel like we were missing anything. The weather was perfect and it wasnt to crowded.
- We hit a few places that we had not seen before and went on a couple of tours that we had not had time to take on previous visits.
- Lying in bed with two strange men. We took a tour of this tavern that housed travelers upstairs back in the day. There were about 15 people in our group including two of the most obnoxious men I have ever been around. They were obnoxious in the way that they both thought they were no-it-alls. They kept asking questions that you knew they knew the answers to and they kept asking them in some kind of 18th century accent. Finally one of the guys asked some question about strangers having to share beds. The lady giving the talk/tour told him to go lay down in a bed. Then she pointed at me and told me to go lay beside him. I tried to wave her off but she persisted. So I went and got in bed with this moron. Then out of all the other people she could have choose, she picked the other obnoxious guy to come lay with us and she made me lay in the middle of both of them. Beth just laughed her butt off and took lots of pics, all of which I have destroyed.
- I didnt get to be judge. We have a tradition where we go to sit in on a mock court hearing. They pick people from the audience to participate and since Im a white, male, Christian, landowner, I always get to be a judge. I was so looking forward to this again but when we got to the court room that told us they werent doing any more mock trials that day.
Day Four: Yorktown, Jamestown, and the ride home
- Jamestown was very cool. I love seeing the way people had to live back in the day and this place had tons of homes, forts, and even three ships that we could tour.
- James river. We rode on the colonial parkway to get to both Yorktown and Jamestown. The parkway followed the James river which was gorgeous.
- The ride home was nice. We took another route and not only did we still make great time, but we passed about 20 plantations.
- Dairy Queen. On the way home I was really feeling some Dairy Queen so I was hoping wed find one when we had to stop for gas. And has fate would have it, the exit we stopped to get gas at had a Dairy Queen.
None that I can think of. The ride home was smooth and relaxing. We got back in plenty of time to hang out with the kids some before they had to go to bed.
Food: I thought I would make this a separate category because we did have some exceptional dinning while on our trip.
- The Whaling Company. Its a great fish place we always eat at every time we go. We went after our day at Busch Gardens and boy did it hit the spot.
- Oktoberfeast. It was a German restaurant in Busch Gardens that was a hidden find. We saw a bunch of people running into this huge building about 11:30am so we though, cool, another ride. When we got in we saw that this was really a restaurant and show hall that had just opened. We decided while we were there wed go ahead and eat. The food was very good was priced very affordable. Then as were eating, some german folks come out and put on a show.
- Death By Chocolate. There is a very fancy restaurant in Williamsburg called The Trellis where a world-renowned cook works. Hes been feature on TV shows, magazines and has won lots of awards. His signature dish is a seven-layer cake called Death by Chocolate. After dinner on Saturday night, Beth and I went back into colonial Williamsburg to try a piece. (Side not, it is supposedly impossible to find a parking spot in colonial Williamsburg but yours truly found one.) They had an area outside for folks like us who just want dessert or coffee. So after all the build up about how good this dessert was, we couldnt wait to taste it. When our waiter brought it to us we could believe the size of it. After our first bite we knew this might be the best dessert we have ever tasted. When we had finished, there was no doubt that this is the dessert that all other dessert will now be judged against in my mind.
All in all, our trip was wonderful!! It was just what we needed. Kudos to Bud, Dave, and everyone else that filled in at church while I was gone.