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A couple of days playing tourist again!

Williamsburg...
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A couple of days playing tourist again!

I am an unabashed supporter of Colonial Williamsburg, and I love the holiday season here. Before we moved to Williamsburg, we used to visit in December, usually in the week following Grand Illumination. This year, DH and I decided again to take a couple of days off to be tourists at Colonial Williamsburg in the week after Grand Illumination.

We started by just walking around for a while. We made a short visit to the basket maker and the resident cat in an outbuilding behind the Wythe House. Following that, we toured the Geddy House, home of a silversmith and his adjoining shop. All interpreters were just as I expected, enthusiastic and knowledgeable.

Following that, we attended a program at the Hennage in the Museums of CW, titled Mother, Sister, Wife, about the three most important women in George Washington's life. The setting was December 1783; they were anticipating his arrival after his farewell to his troops. The play itself was well done if a bit predictable, and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to learn more about the three women and the time period.

Then off to Christiana Campbell's for tea. Again, it was well done, as I have come to expect, but not as sumptuous as some teas I've had. The scones were more like the scones in America than in England, and there was no strawberry jam or clotted cream, so that was a bit disappointing. In addition to tea and tiny blueberry scones, there was also a small sweet potato muffin, delicious as always. The second tray was two small bread triangles, one with ham salad, the other with another type salad - don't remember for sure which kind - and a rectangular toasted bread with a generous dollop of cheddar spread. Lastly were desserts - a small chocolate cake, a ginger snap, a small chocolate cookie, and a holiday sugar cookie. The entertainment was fun; in all, I enjoyed it but probably wouldn't make a point of going again.

We also toured the Peyton Randolph house. The interpreter within the house was again very good. We stopped in the kitchen and watched the beginning of the preparation of puff pastry, and then visited the gunsmiths in a building in the Randolph complex.The tradesmen at work in the 18th century manner are always a pleasure to watch and learn from.

As we were going to our car, we passed by the Wetherburn tavern, where a tour was just beginning. We joined the tour; the guide was again enthusiastic and knowledgeable, as well as being a volunteer.

Today we began with breakfast at the Blue Talon Bistro; I can't recommend this enough! Then we walked up to the Palace for the appearance by Patrick Henry. He is one of the best interpreters on staff, and his talk today did not disappoint. Following his talk and a ramble through the maze, we took a tour of the Palace, something we hadn't done for a long time. The setting was January 1775, and preparations were underway for a ball to be held that evening in honor of Queen Charlotte's birthday as well as the christening of the Lord and Lady Dunmore's new baby, who will be named Virginia. Once again, we had an excellent interpreter guide.

We had hoped to tour the George Wythe house, but it wasn't open when we went by. Overall, I enjoyed our two days, and I am so happy that I live here and can easily do this again!

Chesapeake, VA
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1. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

Excellent report. We enjoyed our visit during the Grand Illumination. We had "dinner" of sorts at the Cheese Shop -- glad we went around 3:30 because the fire marshalls closed the doors shortly behind us due to being over capacity. I was impressed with the quality of food especially under these circumstances that really put the pressure on the staff to crank out those sandwiches and get those people outta there!

RQT
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2. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

I loved reading your report.

Williamsburg, VA
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3. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

Thank you, Zoey. It is so easy to not stop and smell the roses here in the historic triangle.

Dallas, Tx
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4. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

Zoey, it's so great that you did this! It sounds like you had a lot of fun. How were the decorations? I have never seen CW this time of year. Maybe next time...I know they use a lot of natural decorations...

The tea at Christiana Campbell's sounds like a nice one-timer. I am a little shocked about the lack of clotted cream, however. Even though it doesn't sound like a very GRAND tea, I think I would like to try it once...

We also had a tour of Wetherburn's Tavern. I really, really enjoyed it! No wonder women didn't travel very often in those days! It was very nearly impossible considering the accommodations.

Thanks for taking the time to share your experience!

Iowa
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5. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

Next time Zoey, add a holiday visit to the Museums of Colonial Williamsburg. Not to be missed: - the two large dollhouses, the 16 foot tree decorated with over 1000 hand made ornaments, and the Carolina Room filled with toys. It is a great place for a light lunch or coffee break as well.

Williamsburg...
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6. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

The decorations are so beautiful, and inventive! They are either all natural or incorporate items that would have been available in the 18th century, such as clay pipes and wig curlers.

I did look at the dollhouses when we were at the museums for Mother, Sister, Wife. We also viewed the wonderfully decorated folk art tree. I am planning a stop for the Carolina Room this week; I haven't seen it at Christmas time since it was moved from the former Folk Art Museum.

Central Illinois
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7. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

Thank you Zoey!! I love it when you play tourist!!!!

Salem, VA
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8. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

Thank you, Zoey! You just reminded me of the fabulous dinner I had at Blue Talon a couple of weeks ago. It was the best meal I've had in a very long time. Oh, my mouth is watering...

Melba
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9. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

You are such a wonderful "tourist" Zoey, after reading your segment, I closed my eyes, and tried to imagine all the places, scenes, food, smells and sights that tickled my interest. I have never been to CW in the winter time, due to cattle, horses and various animals that need to be tended to, but maybe someday I will be able to actually see, all that you just described. What wonderful visions, that you have awakened in me. Thank you so very much for sharing it with all of us.

10. Re: A couple of days playing tourist again!

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