So we had heard that although Colonial Williamsburg is a must-see, you need not necessarily purchase a ticket to do so.
Feeling as though we had been hemorrhaging money lately on flooded full-hookup campgrounds, war museums, trolley tours, house tours, crab dinners, and the like, we decided to test the theory! (Edit: Not to mention the expensive 4-digit RV repair we would do just a few days later.)
Considering that we started the morning slowly, we actually accomplished quite a bit today! Come with us as we travel back in time to Colonial Williamsburg. And then back further to Jamestown, our first permanent English settlement!
The grounds of the Williamsburg Visitor Center were beautiful. The Volunteer at the help desk seemed to mimic the advice about not buying tickets. I must say, though, that I was skeptical when I saw the map which accompanied his instructions that we would not be able to go to any of the buildings in red.
From there, we savored the 10-minute walk to the actual colonial village.
And then here we were at the windmill…
…and Governor’s Palace, which were both “red” on the map! No entrar!
(Just a little side note. At our visit to Monticello the next week, we learned that the original Governor’s Mansion burned to the ground in 1781, but they were able to rebuild it in the 1930s off of Thomas Jefferson’s drawings. Apparently, he had resided here as Governor in 1779-80.)
As we strolled along the Palace Green, lined with “red” buildings, we observed and commented on the the brick and stone walkways, architecture, and plant life.
Turning onto the Duke of Gloucester Street, we saw the infamous stocks and other novelties.
Turning around at the Capitol,
we had our eyes peeled for the storefronts and eateries along the way. The website which tipped us off about not buying tickets also alerted us to the promise of a tasty treat! Thanks to Obadiah’s eagle-eyes, we located the hidden treasures…
…ginger cakes, still warm from the oven! Twelve thumbs up!
Is it odd for this antithesis of a packrat to want to keep the wrapper of my colonial ginger cake, which exhibits oil stains and the faint aroma of the delicacy it once held? I haven’t decided yet.
Anyway, we enjoyed the rest of our walk back to the car as we planned our next stop…Jamestown.
After enjoying a tailgate lunch of hard-boiled eggs, vegetables, and fruit, we hopped on over to Jamestown. We were surprised (and confused) to find TWO Jamestowns! Jamestown Settlement and Historic Jamestowne. What? Somebody needs to do some talking here! And fast!
What we deduced is that Jamestown Settlement is a commercial Jamestown, with re-enactors and replicas, while Historic Jamestowne is a National Park, with the original buildings and artifacts.
Ummm…should we spend $100…
Historic Jamestowne, here we come!
We are SO GLAD that we did. After watching a short movie overview and strolling through the museum,
we joined up with “John Rolfe,” an in-costume, in-character Park Ranger who captivated us for MUCH longer than the promised 30 minutes! Oh yeah! This is what gets the Bird Family going!
I’m not going to repeat his whole shpeel, although it was very interesting. (Honestly, it’s not like I could, anyway!)
But he was instrumental in getting our imaginations to play out events that actually occurred here with real people. On THIS water. On THIS shore. Fascinating. Cold. Windy. But fascinating!
I felt so bad, but I fell asleep on the way home! Sorry, Cliff!
We still had time for a little visit to the beach after some ham & lentil stew. But I’ll leave that for another post!