July 23: Montpelier

Woke up and took a walk around Berta & Wally’s property, mostly admiring the effects of the stream washout. A whole bridge came down (see photo below), the old racetrack is covered in silt, and their stream no longer has a streambed. The good news (unrelated to the flood) is that the tire collection is now covered in beautiful moss and trees, so you can hardly see it anymore.

Breakfast was wonderful: Matzoh Brei and homemade orange/lemon/pineapple marmalade. Then J, Pres and I drove into Montpelier for the farmer’s market and poking around in a few shops. Stopped in for iced tea and a delicious fruit tart at the NECI patisserie. Vermont is a whole different world, crunchy and cozy — as J summarized, “I haven’t seen this many Birkenstocks in one place in years.”

Drove up to the Wrightsville Dam Beach Park for a relaxing afternoon of swimming and sitting on the beach (well, the grass, really). The water was perfect, the view across the reservoir was idyllic, and the beach wasn’t too crowded. It’s amazing how empty Vermont feels after spending time in Maryland and Massachusetts.

Back to Wally & Berta’s for dinner, then out to Bragg’s Farm for maple creemees (soft serve). Such a good ice cream experience, complete with a view out over the mountains and miniature ponies in the field next door. Spent the rest of the night chatting, largely about books we’ve read and plan to read.

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