Today was spent mostly in the car again. We drove to Roanoke for lunch. This town was REALLY neat, especially the downtown. There were lots of restaurants and shops. The neatest thing, though, was the visitor's center. There was a section devoted to Mr. Loewry, who designed the Roanoke train station. He has been lost in history, but shouldn't be (we don't think so, anyway). He used his art skills to design some well-known artifacts of Americana. He modernized the design of the refrigerator, the Coke, Shell, and Exxon logos, modern trains, planes, Greyhounds, and the Studabaker. He also worked for NASA.
When we left Roanoke we took the Blue Ridge for an hour or two, headed to Natural Bridge. After looking more closely at the information on the "natural wonder," we decided it was too touristy (Which is a shame... this nautral wonder should have been left... well, natural.). We decided to take local highways to Charlottesville and see Monticello. We drove through tons of neat little towns full of huge farms, plantation houses, and old motels and diners. We saw lots of neat things along the way (see pictures). We got to Charlottesville too late to visit Jefferson's house, so we will do that tomorrow, then get back on the path to D.C.!
We thought this really colorful train car was neat, but couldn't get the camera out quickly enough... Still shows the color, kind of... I guess...
Roanoke coal train.
On the Blue Ridge. If you don't have a gorilla pod, we HIGHLY recommend getting one... It is a tripod with "spidery" legs that stand firm or wrap around something to take pictures of you AND the background... No more head-only-kinda-background-arm-showing pictures!
View from Blueridge.
A sight along the local highway... This man has control of the crazy tourist business... This one is advertising Dinosaur Kingdom... "realistic" dinosaurs fighting... Civil War soldiers! He has also designed Foamhenge, which is a "realistic" recreation of Stonhenge (A guidebook said the most realistic in the world!). He also has a haunted house... CRAZY!!!
Chris happend to catch a sign pointing us in the direction of this marker... Glad he did, that's pretty neat!
In downton Charlottesville.
1/2 of the "chalked wall."
Our supper restaurant... Himalayan Fusion. Indian, Nepalese, and Tibetan food... It was yummy!
The top is Chris's: Tikka Masala (chicken in a creamy curry sauce over rice).
The bottom is Kathryn's: Saag Paneer (spiced spinach and cottage cheese squares over rice)