Sunday, March 26, 2017

Three Beautiful Things 03/25/17: The American Revolution, Perfect Matinee at the Bar, Outside at Traditions

1. The Deke and I sprang into action this morning, piled into the Sube, and set out on a 3+ hour drive to Yorktown, VA for a weekend vacation. We hit stop and go traffic on I-95 after the E-Z Pass Express Lanes ended, slowing us down a bit, but we were patient and arrived in Yorktown a little after two. We went straight to the American Revolution Museum and watched an odd film about liberty and then dove into the permanent exhibits and spent some time at the outdoor encampment and saw, but didn't visit, the museum's replication of a colonial farm a ways off. We knew we could never take in this whole museum. We enjoyed what we had the energy to look at and read about. I left the museum thinking more about the economic dilemma its colonizing project put England in. England profited from the tobacco and sugar and other products it extracted from the U. S. colonies, but financing, occupying, securing, and administering the colonies was costly and difficult to manage. If I ever return to this museum and if I do any follow up reading, I'll be the most interested in looking into the economic demands and administrative difficulties of colonizing another land and of being a force of occupation.

2.  The Deke and I then drove a short ways to the Water Street Grille overlooking the York River. We snagged a couple seats at the bar in the round and enjoyed the marine breeze blowing through the joint and settled into some superb beers. Never in my life have I tried a beer from Clown Shoes Brewing up in Ipswich, MA, and I ordered a snifter of Space Cake 2IPA and it was perfect. The Deke went for Lagunita's splendid and sweet Imperial Brown Ale, Brown Shugga'. As our happiness grew, we decided to bump it up to just shy of ecstasy. We ordered calamari drizzled with an awesome sweet and sour chili sauce and balsamic glaze. With visions of redcoats and minutemen dancing in our heads, the Deke broke off and headed to a bench overlooking the river and I stuck around the bar long enough to drink 4 oz. of Blue Mountain Brewing's Sour Geist, a peachy wild ale, perfectly fruity and sour, just what I love in a dessert beer. I then joined the Deke at the bench she'd found. The temperature was in the 70s. The breeze was refreshing. We gazed out over the York River, relaxed, carefree (for the moment), enjoying the union of beer, calamari, water, slight wind, and one another's company.

3.  Our studio suite at the Staybridge was about twenty minutes or so away from Water Street and, once we got checked in, I told the Deke that we were fairly close to a brewery in Newport News. We bolted out the door and buzzed to Traditions Brewery. Had it not been so gorgeous outside, we wouldn't have stayed because the spacious concrete tasting room was hosting a loud live electric band who was playing "Sailing" by Christopher Cross as we headed to the bar. The Deke got right out of there and found us a place to sit outside and I ordered a red ale and an Irish stout and joined the Deke and we enjoyed the evening/night air and the low ABV beer so much that we just kept talking and watching people and didn't really want to leave. But we did. We bought a bag of popcorn to microwave in our suite at the Staybridge. I marveled at the Oregon/Kansas score, stunned that the Ducks beat the Jayhawks so handily, and I enjoyed and appreciated Terry Turner's texts to me, filling me in on what the Ducks did so well in order to defeat the Jayhawks. Wow! The Zags and the Ducks are in the Final Four.  I never ever even dreamed this would ever happen.

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