Day 77 - Fairfax, VA to Fredericksburg, VA, Oct. 4th, 2015
Good to be on the road again after three days of being pampered by my wonderful friends in Fairfax. First stop on my tour to the historic towns of Virginia: Fredericksburg ....
The route there was not particularly nice because there was no alternative but to take the "less travelled" highway as opposed to the Interstate - see image below.
Knowing about the battles in and around that city is one thing but seeing those places and landmarks plus watching a 20-minute documentary in the visitor's center is another. The town keeps its national heritage alive and even marks Confederate trenches and cannon sites in their originial places.
My first impression of my warmshowers hosts for tonight was a garage full of bicycles including two tandems! Bruce is active with the boyscouts and he regularly takes groups of boys on cycling tours. In summer 2014 a group of 10 boys between 15 and 18 plus 4 adults, rode from San Francisco, Stinson Beach, to Virginia Beach, VA in 64 days, accompanied by two vehicles. Among other things Bruce was so overwhelmed by the hospitality the whole group encountered with warmshowers hosts that he decided to give some of that back to the cycling community. So he and his wife hosted 68!! cyclists in 18 months. Wow, that's impressive. Fredericksburg is situated at a crossroad of cycling routes ...
The concept underlying this tour is interesting: the boys (all scouts) have to show a lot of dedication in the phase of preparation, they have to find their own funding through work (washing cars etc), they have to develop enough stamina on a bike to do not only 100 miles, but 200 miles in 24 hours, and they sign all those rules including the rule that they cannot back out at the last moment. Bruce sees all this as a wonderful way to develop the young people's personality - and I agree. The sense of achievement after the trip must be very rewarding indeed.
Finally, Bruce gave me the information about a recently opened cycling path from Richmond to Williamsburg, the Virginia Capital Trail, which I will take ....
This is the "less busy" highway from DC to Fredericksburg - the alternative is an Interstate ...
This bird was relentless, two cars went by and it didn't even twitch!
The city of Fredericksburg has an almost European feel to it - almost all houses are of stone bricks ...
History is everywhere ...
Ok, so George Washington was here.
In a large antiques shop you see Civil War memorabilia everywhere.
I'm not sure I would pay 700$ for that dinosaur ...
Grow your own - what a difference to the real life I see everywhere!
Kids back then must have had awful abilities (magic, voodoo, telepathy??) to take selfies without touching the camera!
At this place the Confederates tried in vain to stop the Union soldiers crossing the the river - but won the battle nevertheless - at a high price.
But of course Fredericksburg has a much older history, too.
I just had to go into the "German" pub and try " eine Mass". The bar tender wore a Dirndl and when I asked her she admitted that no, she did not like wearing it, but it was her uniform ...
I was wondering about this house - A Podiatrist, a driving school and the sign "Union Branch of true Vine (UBTV)" and it was so baffling that I googled it. My result? See here: http://aviewoffredericksburg.blogspot.com/2010/06/meaning.html#comment-form