East Coast 2021:
Day 10 - Petersburg, VA


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East Coast 2021: [Day 1 - Erie, PA] [Day 2 - Syracuse, NY] [Day 3 - Littleton, NH] [Day 4 - Ft. Kent, ME] [Day 5 - Bucksport, ME] [Day 6 - Hampton, NH] [Day 7 - Branford, CT] [Day 8 - Bensalem, PA] [Day 9 - Jessup, MD] [Day 10 - Petersburg, VA] [Day 11 - Columbia, SC] [Day 12 - Baxley, GA] [Day 13 - Titusville, FL] [Day 14 - Homestead, FL] [Day 15 - Homestead, FL] [Day 16 - Homestead, FL] [Day 17 - Tavernier, FL] [Day 18 - Marathon, FL] [Day 19 - Gainesville, FL] [Day 20 - Natchez, MS] [Day 21 - Nashville, TN] [Day 22 - Heading Home]

Sunday, September 19, 2021: Debbie got this great picture of dawn breaking around 6:40 AM. We were all packed up and on the road forty minutes later.
We got gas and tried to get Taco Bell for breakfast, but it was apparently closed despite all the signs saying they opened at 7:00 AM. It turned out to be good for us that it was closed, because when we went next door to McDonald's they had the very elusive and much sought after Steak Egg and Cheese Bagel on their menu.
Behold! The most awesome combination of meat, cheese, bread, onions, and magic sauce ever to be combined into one breakfast sandwich! This disappeared from most locations at the start of the pandemic. Dare we hope that it is making a comeback?
Hardly able to contain our excitement, we headed south on Route 1.
We passed several old-style Arby's restaurants as we came south. Some were just old signs but new buildings, but in at least one case, both the sign and the building were the old design.
The University of Maryland was very sleepy at 8 AM on a Sunday.
This sign sums up our the entire trip: "US Route 1. Thank you for your patience. Drive Carefully."
We used Arrow Bicycle in Hyattsville, MD, as a waypoint to force Google Maps to take us down Route 1. It's harder than you think to get navigation apps to use a specific road.
Welcome to Washington, D.C.
These townhouses, or maybe apartments, along Route 1 were incredibly beautiful.
While we were in DC, we noticed that the Route 1 signs had "DC - US" in the top part of the shield.
This neon sculpture outside the Shaw Library is named "Vivace" and was created by artist Craig Kraft.
The flag of South Korea flew over Old Korean Legation Museum on Logan Circle at 13th Street NW.
The historic Franklin School building is now the home of Planet Word, a language arts museum that recently opened in October 2020.
We continued on 13th Street NW into the city, looking down the other streets. This is the New York Avenue Presbyterian Church.
We turned down Pennsylvania Avenue and saw the National Theatre.
We turned again at 14th Street NW, passing the Commerce Department building.
We crossed over the west end of the mall and found parking along Jefferson Drive SW. There were plenty of parking spots right on the mall this early on a Sunday.
We were here to see the Hirschhorn Museum Sculpture Garden, specifically a copy of the Sphere within Sphere sculpture that should have been right here. Unfortunately, it appeared to have been removed.
There were plenty of other statues to see, including one of twelve casts of the Burghers of Calais which we saw in Calais in 2015.
Just so you know, the Hirshhorn Museum is open.
The original version of this statue, Kiepenkerl, was a sandstone scuplture created in 1896 in Germany, but it was destroyed during World War II. An artist recreated the original in cast metal in 1953, and in 1987, American sculptor Jeff Koons created this copy in polished cast stainless steel.
This sculpture, Are Years What? by Mark di Suvero, 1967, is located just outside of the sculpture garden.
We decided to walk along the mall since there weren't many people out. Tom downloaded an app to pay for parking while Debbie headed to the mall.
The last time we were here, the mall was crawling with people.
This time, there wasn't a single person in sight.
Okay. One person.
Tom completed paying for parking, made sure the van was all locked up, and played a quick round of "Where's my wife?" It turned out to be a really easy round, much easier than it would normally be at this location.
We tried unsuccessfully to recreate previous photos of Debbie standing here, most recently in 2018.
Tom took the opportunity to take a 360° panorama. When would we be the only two people on the mall ever again?
We continued across the mall to the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden. This striking shiny metal tree is Graft, 2008 - 2009, by Roxy Paine. We saw it here in 2018.
The carousel was not yet open and we took a few minutes to enjoy the designs of the various seats.
We both knew immediately that this was the best seat available. One that little children would weep over if they didn't get to ride it.
We passed the National Air and Space Museum, ...
... the National Museum of the American Indian, ...
... and stopped for a minute to admire the capitol building. The security fencing had been restored in anticipation of the previous day's far-right rally.
Back in our van, we saw that the giant blue rooster on the roof of the National Gallery of Art's Art Research Library was keeping a close eye on everything.
We took a look at the construction going on at the former Newseum building where we had attended a party in 2018. The Newseum closed in December 2019, and John Hopkins University purchased the building.
The National Archives had banners featuring exhibits for Women's Suffrage.
At the base of the Washington Monument, we saw an art installation honoring those who lost their lives to COVID-19. The exhibit, titled In America: Remember, was installed only two days earlier.
When we drove by, the number of deaths was at 672,689, which includes several people we knew. The artist plans to update the flags, and the numbers, until the exhibit closes on October 3.
It was a truly moving exhibit, and we were only driving by.
The exhibit covers 20 acres.
We drove past the Lincoln Memorial, ...
... which still showed signs of road closures from the previous day, ...
... and across the Arlington Memorial Bridge. That's Arlington National Cemetery in the distance.
We could see the Pentagon in the distance as we drove south.
We were trying to get to the Jefferson Memorial, but police barricades kept directing us away from it.
We passed the International Spy Museum, ...
... and saw boats in the marina, but we couldn't get any closer to it.
We could see Jefferson standing in the monument as we drove by, ...
... and headed out of DC.
Back on Route 1, we crossed over into Virginia. We had been here earlier this year.
We noticed the Boeing building as we drove through Crystal City and wondered if the building contained more than just lobbyists.
The Americana Hotel looked out of place among the highrise hotels, but it was probably THE place to stay in the 1960s and 1970s. We were sad to hear that it has closed the previous year.
We avoided the temptation go get on I-95 and continued south on Route 1.
Virginia welcomed us right with a stand-alone Krispy Kreme building right on the route.
The "Hot Now" light is on! It's on! Get in there!
We purchased six "Original Glazed" donuts, still noticeably warm. Oh my, those are heavenly.
We arrived at our next stop for the day: the Woodlawn Cultural Landscape Historic District. It contains several historic properties, including Woodlawn, which we weren't here to see.
We were here to see the Pope-Leighey House, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. It is one of three homes in Virginia designed by Wright.
It was one of the first Usonian homes, and was completed in 1941 for the Pope family. It was later sold to the Leighey family, hence the name "Pope-Leighey House."
While waiting for our tour to start, our tour guide encouraged us to walk around the grounds. Debbie saw this American beautyberry shrub nearby, which is one of her favorite plants.
The house is in fantastic shape considering it has been relocated twice. Originally built in Falls Church, Virginia, it was in the proposed route of I-66 in 1964 and was marked for demolition. The owner at the time, Marjorie Leighey, donated the house to the National Trust for Historic Preservation, which dismantled, moved, and reconstructed the house on the Woodlawn Plantation. In 1995, the National Trust determined that the site of the relocated home was unstable, and once again dismantled, moved, and reconstructed the the house on its current location.
The detail in the windows and the roof overhang were gorgeous.
There was a small patio in the back of the house.
The corner of this wing had windows all down the side with ornate cutouts in them.
A screened-in patio opened off the right side of the house.
Shortly before the tour was due to start, the other four tour participants walked up and asked us about restrooms, and we told them the only restrooms are in Woodlawn, so off they sauntered. Knowing that they would be at least 10 minutes late for the tour, we asked our guide if he would give us a short tour before they got back, which he kindly agreed to do. Inside, the tour guide explained the original purpose of the various rooms, including this office for the original owner, Loren Pope, who was a journalist.
This was the master bedroom.
The house featured indoor plumbing, which was rare for this area when it was built in 1941.
The tour guide explained that the windows running along the hallway could be opened to create a breeze, but that they were no longer used since the home was now air conditioned.
This was the Popes' son's room, ...
... which was small but beautiful.
In the main hallway, these small closets were the only storage in the home. Wright just did not believe in adding storage to the houses he designed, which was surprising considering all of the cars and artwork that he himself collected.
Here's the kitchen, again with only four cupboards for storage. The guide explained that the home was built in an area where the owners would have convenient access to the market, so they didn't need a lot of storage in the kitchen.
This is the main room. The screened-in patio seen from the outside is on the other side of these windows.
The patio was through these doors, which were missing. We don't remember the guide explaining what happened to them.
Wright didn't believe in storage, but he believed very strongly in bookshelves.
The corner cutouts and windows provided lots of natural light.
The guide explained that the floor had steam pipes routed under the floor of the main room for heating, so the fireplace was only used rarely. Having toured other Wright homes and hearing how badly the fireplaces worked, it's probably good that they hadn't needed this one.
Here's a view from the main room looking back toward the door to the house.
The guide explained that the patio was added later to give the original owners a little more room.
The built-in furniture was typical Wright design: lightweight, modular, and made from plywood.
Our tour guide was efficient and gave us an excellent tour in ten minutes, so we were on our way when the other people finally showed up. It was our ideal FLW tour - just see the rooms, hit the important points, and skip all of the FLW backstory - and with no other people around! Perfect.
We passed the gates of Fort Belvoir, an Army base that employs twice as many people as the Pentagon. Wow.
Of course we stayed in the right lane.
We passed Five Guys corporate headquarters, and wondered what food was in their breakroom.
We passed over the Occoquan River, ...
... headed into Woodbridge, Virginia, ...
... to get lunch at Fuddruckers. We both ordered one-third pound burgers, ...
... and piled them high with delicious toppings at the burger bar, including massive quantities of fresh pico de gallo. Delicious!
We were seeing a lot of history while driving this route, which was really cool.
Semper Fi! We passed the National Museum of the Marine Corps at the Marine Corps Heritage Center in Triangle, Virginia. There are lots of interesting things on Route 1.
The road was a four lane highway through rolling hills and was lined with trees. It was a welcome change from the congested city streets of the northeast.
We started seeing "Historic Route 1" signs occasionally.
We were near Marine Corps Base Quantico, who had adopted this section of highway.
We weren't expecting to see these stand-alone ice kiosks this far north. We had previously seen them throughout the Florida Keys, but apparently they were in use throughout the south.
We crossed the Rappahannock River and admired the beautiful riverbed.
The University of Mary Washington built a skybridge to provide their students with easier access to the campus buildings on both sides of Route 1.
We were on part of the Virginia Civil War Trails, a network of roads connecting more than 700 Civil War battle sites in five states.
This historical marker told us that General Ulysses S. Grant used the pews of the Massaponax Baptist Church during their march through this area.
Here's the church itself.
This was the second or third student driver sign we had seen on a semi since the first one we had seen in Buffalo at the start of the trip.
Seriously. Lots of history on this route.
Virginia Commonwealth University, known to March Madness fans simply as VCU, is located on Route 1 in Richmond, Virginia.
This sculpture at the James Center features three figures raising a sail. It was striking and beautifully lifelike.
Behold the Virginia State Capitol. It is the eighth building built to serve as the capitol of Virginia, with the previous buildings mostly being lost to fires. Yikes.
Back on Route 1, we crossed over the James River.
Richmond was also proudly honoring its veterans.
Further south, we stopped at Petersburg National Battlefield.
There were various cannon along the walkways in front of the visitor center, ...
... but we were just here to see the Stephen Tyng Mather plaque.
Okay. Maybe we looked a few of the cannons, too.
We checked into our hotel, the Holiday Inn and Suites in Petersburg, around 4 PM and rested for a while before heading out again a few hours later to get dinner.
Tom fetched Shrimp Po Boys from Joe's Steak and Seafood, and they hit the spot.

Miles today: 189. Total miles from Fort Kent, ME: 1474.

Day 11 >


East Coast 2021: [Day 1 - Erie, PA] [Day 2 - Syracuse, NY] [Day 3 - Littleton, NH] [Day 4 - Ft. Kent, ME] [Day 5 - Bucksport, ME] [Day 6 - Hampton, NH] [Day 7 - Branford, CT] [Day 8 - Bensalem, PA] [Day 9 - Jessup, MD] [Day 10 - Petersburg, VA] [Day 11 - Columbia, SC] [Day 12 - Baxley, GA] [Day 13 - Titusville, FL] [Day 14 - Homestead, FL] [Day 15 - Homestead, FL] [Day 16 - Homestead, FL] [Day 17 - Tavernier, FL] [Day 18 - Marathon, FL] [Day 19 - Gainesville, FL] [Day 20 - Natchez, MS] [Day 21 - Nashville, TN] [Day 22 - Heading Home]

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