Even though I’ve lived in Southern Virginia for the past 21.9 years (I’m refusing to admit that soon, I’ll be 22), I always forget that Southern Virginia has this tendency to be super hot and humid and reminiscent of summer until one day, the temperature drops approximately 30 degrees and it stays that way. There’s no “Hey, fall, what’s up?” – it simply likes to plop down here in Williamsburg when we’re not ready for it. And that is exactly what happened this weekend. My a capella group (Passing Notes) decided that for our annual fall retreat, we would go camping.
Myself, Gabrielle, & Estelle ready for 1986.
The night before, we danced with the best of them and had an 80’s themed bash with the boys of Rugby, and I received one of the biggest compliments I have ever received. While walking down Richmond Road, we ran into women who were back in Williamsburg for some sort of event, and one of them stopped me and said, “Oh my goodness – I looked EXACTLY like you in 1986!” Mission accomplished—my 80’s costume was successful, according to a woman on the street, which I accept fully as a sign of success. After partying like it was 1986, I headed to bed to prepare for the rest of the hectic weekend that I had ahead of me!
The next night, we went camping approximately 20 minutes outside of Williamsburg. When I checked the weather on Friday morning, the forecast was cloudy, but with 0% chance of rain. Let me reiterate that – 0% chance of rain. As we met up at 5:30 to leave, there were littttttle rain drops that began to fall, but nothing serious. We got to the camp ground and laid out our tents. We then found out that I was the only person who knew how to set up a tent. Albeit embarrassed that the campground’s manager helped set up the other tent while I was busy working on the first one, we got everything settled, and that was good because we literally sat in the 6-person tent and talked and rehearsed through a monsoon-like downpour. Everyone (but me, who was sleeping peacefully because I was warm and snuggly because I was prepared) made the decision to leave the next morning at 5:30 because they were freezing. I was rather proud of myself (as were my sister and her fiance—both outdoorsy people) for being the camping goddess of the weekend.
After doing a Fall Focus Day student panel, I headed to Richmond, Virginia to help my sister and her fiance move into their new home, Victory Farms, Inc. – check out their website here – it’s beautiful and wonderful and organic. Although it was freezing and we didn’t find the thermostat until Sunday when I was leaving (which meant I slept under three blankets on top of a down sleeping bag), it was so beautiful and exciting to see my sister in this new stage of her life! My family has three October birthdays and with those birthdays this year come the ages 29 (my sister), 24 (my brother), and 22 (me!). This whole growing up thing is a little scary, but the craziness of this weekend made me appreciate even more the friends and family that are surrounding me as I make this crazy journey of growing up.
I’m so excited for what fall has to bring – which this morning has included sleeping in a little, having a big cup of french-press coffee, being productive, and making use of my leopard print Snuggie (yes, I have one – don’t judge me). Fall in Williamsburg is always full of so many wonderful things—warm mugs of cider, gingerbread cookies from Raleigh Tavern Bakery that take me back to my childhood, the smell of fall with its burning leaves and wood, scarves, clogs, and all of those other wonderful things that make me excited about the month of October. So, although fall made its arrival very suddenly and without any warning, I can’t help but say I’m excited for what it has to bring.