As has been my modus operandi for the past months, I have been on the road. I returned to base last Sunday night and have been debriefing, decompressing, and decomposing (not writing) ever since. As usual, I went to Virginia with multiple items on the agenda.
Thursday, I submitted my step-father's estate inventory at the county seat. Even though his will and estate are relatively straightforward, administering any estate requires care. So far, so good.
Next was a trip to my mother's safe deposit box to retrieve some stock certificates. Now these assets of hers are safely being held by her brokerage. After that it was on to Richmond and my sister's - with mother riding shotgun.
I had planned to use last Friday as an opportunity for a day trip to the Northern Neck and another courthouse. I felt like I needed to learn more about some land my mother has an interest in and to determine what building restrictions apply to her waterfront property. To my surprise mother said she wanted to go with me. We had talked about taking a road trip to her family home grounds for several months, but she had resisted every date I suggested. Since my step-father died last spring she has gone through spells when she just wanted to do little more than curl up on her favorite couch in the sun room. Not good. So when she said she wanted to go with me and spend a few days in Richmond with my sister, I was very pleased.
So after spending Thursday night at my sister's we headed up highway 360. The weather was great. After the usual wonderful lunch at Lowery's we hit the courthouse about 1:30. Mother had been very chatty, point out places of interest and the falling price of unleaded regular. I think my favorite moment was when she said, "There was a girl I used to know who lived over there. She married some boy - I forget his name - but he died." Moments like that and I fear I know why my daughter calls me Captain Tangent.
Mother stayed in the car - sleeping mostly - while I provided friday afternoon entertainment at several county offices. I was a bit surprised, but in a little over an hour I had all the information I needed. We then drove to what is left of her family farm - it is a subdivision now - then scouted the other track of land she owns with her brother. We trespassed down a farm road looking for her old family graveyard. Never found it. Mother then decided she wanted to visit a few local communities. This little side trip added a couple of hours to our drive but she enjoyed seeing places again and remarking on what had changed and being pleased at what had not. It was after dark by the time we returned to Richmond, dinner, and a good night's sleep.
Saturday was the event that had prompted my trip north in the first place, the reunion of three classes at the high school where I worked in the mid 70's. Before checking into the hotel mother, my sister, and I visited the new home of my nephew and his bride. They have been renovating a row house in an increasingly trendy section of Richmond. They have done a great job, have clever plans for more work, and it was wonderful to visit with them.
The reunion was great. I saw loads of folks I had not seen in ~25 years. Everyone seemed to have a great time with the socializing starting at three in the afternoon and lasting well past when I went to bed around one. Unfortunately I was was the only faculty member there. I would have liked to have seen some of my old colleagues.
As expected most of us had more weight and less hair. I remember those classes fondly as a very special group of young people. It seems as adults they have retained that character. Several people I expected and wanted to see were not there, but I had several wonderful extended conversations with folks I had not thought of in years. Two of my favorite students who I had not lost touch with were there as expected. Just the time spent with them that evening - and breakfast the next morning - made the trip for me. The rest was a happy bonus.
About noon I returned to my sister's house and mother and I headed south. After getting her situated back home I treked south and home. Even learning that my fantasy football team had again lost - rant coming soon - could not take the luster off a great trip.
Now I plan to take advantage of a spell of dry warm weather to do some outside work around the house - roofing work mostly - and catch up on my blogging and correspondence.
Save the Bay.