December 28, 2021

Williamsburg

So we got a wild hair and decided to go to Williamsburg for two reasons; our 40th anniversary; and to get more familiar with the area. We booked a room at the Williamsburg Whitehouse, loaded up the car and hit the road. Instead of the dreaded I-95, we decided to take the local route and drive Highway 1 down to Williamsburg. It’s a bit out of the way and definitely a longer drive, but it’s decidedly less stressful than I-95 to I-64.

We arrived in the afternoon, checked into the hotel, and then headed to Food for Thought for dinner. The restaurant business is Williamsburg is struggling a bit with the lack of workers, and FfT was one of the few places open that we could get into to. Everything else was booked up solid. The food was good, but the restaurant was very busy in very noisy.

The next day we had scheduled with a local realtor to look at some houses for sale in the area. Unfortunately, most of the houses we had indicated we wanted to tour already had contract pending, so the realtor had lined up another group of properties to show us. It was a full day, and we were exhausted by days end, so we grabbed dinner at Guiseppe’s Italian Restaurant, and turned in for the day.

The next morning we decided to just be tourists and drive around the area. We headed North to the West Point Area, headed toward the southern end of the peninsula, and down toward the Robert O. Norris Jr. bridge over the Rappahannock River. Approaching the bridge in the now inclement weather, we were struck by the height of the bridge. Once on the bridge, the other item to note was the very low guard rails on either side of the narrow 2-lane roadway. Normally, I’m not uncomfortable on less than optimum roads, but I’ll admit this one spooked me. After lunch, we very carefully found our way back across the river, and made a unanimous decision that we definitely did not want to be crossing the bridge any more than absolutely necessary.

We took the southern route back to town through Gloucester and wound up at KEΦI Greek Kitchen for dinner.

On Sunday, our Anniversary, we decided to head down to Virginia Beach to have dinner at Waterman’s Surfside Grill. We had eaten there a year or so earlier and found the food to be, in the words of a co-worker, delightful. The first thing we noticed as we threaded through the area, was the vast difference in traffic, bath pedestrian and automotive. The first time we were here was literally at the height of the pandemic quarantine, so the crowds were virtually non-existent.

That was not the case this day. Holy, moly. The cars were literally bumper to bumper the entire beach road, and the throngs of people walking about were enormous. Driving around a bit, we couldn’t get anywhere near Watermans. We gave them a quick call to see how crowded they were and were told the wait was over an hour. Okie dokie, on to plan B.

We had the addresses of a couple of houses for sale in the area, so we drove around a bit and wound up at Angelo’s Italian Restaurant. We were the only people there. The food was good and the proprietor was very gracious. Driving around a bit to look at a few more houses, we headed back, deciding that Virginia Beach, and nearby Norfolk and Chesapeake were definitely not on our list of potential places to retire. Just too hustle bustle. We are definitely looking for a slower lifestyle in our “golden years”.

We headed back to the Whitehouse, had a nice nap and looked to see what was available for dinner. Even worse than our first night in Williamsburg, there was little to availability. Everyone open was booked, so we took a chance and went to Sal’s By Victor. It was very busy, but they found us a table in the bar area, but not at the bar. Make sense? There was a very large take out business and most of the food delivery was literally at our elbow. We ordered dinner and watched the crowd. The man behind us was a fairly “discerning” (look it up) diner and was very specific to the waitress in how his dinner was to be presented. They all seemed to know him, so I’m guessing he was a regular, but his main mantra was “don’t serve me anything I’m not going to eat, as I won’t pay for it”…

To be kind, the food was entirely pedestrian. Nothing whatsoever of note. They bill themselves as offering the most authentic Italian food in Williamsburg. Interesting that they don’t claim to be the best Italian food. LOL.

Monday was our last full day in the area, so we decided to head West to see what was out there. We decided to take the Jamestown-Scotland Ferry for a treat and were able to get out and catch the view. As the Fuji X-T2 with the three lens combo had accompanied us, I was able to grab some shots while we crossed the James River:

Ferry across the James
Ferry across the James
Ferry across the James
Ferry across the James
Ferry across the James
Ferry across the James
Ferry across the James
Ferry across the James
Ferry across the James
Ferry across the James

We headed south, finding the area VERY rural dominated mostly by Smithfield Hams. Not too much to see. We ate lunch at Farmer’s Table. It was kind of a typical strip mall kind of place. Nothing to crow about. While we ate, we decided to book a Twilight Cruise on the York River on the Yorktown Schooner Alliance.

We got back to the hotel in the early afternoon, had a luxurious nap and then headed out to Yorktown Harbor to board the Alliance. The Alliance is a modern three masted schooner patterned after sailing ships of yore. We were fairly early, and were the first ones on the vessel. There wasn’t a lot of dedicated seating, but plenty of places to sit if that makes any sense.

As you might expect, being a twilight cruise there were plenty of photo opportunities:

Gazing at the horizon!
Twilight Cruise on the York
Coleman Memorial Bridge at Sunset
Sail Tackle on the Alliance
Towering Sails!
Towering Sails
Sunset over the York
Sunset Over the York
Sunset Over the York
Headed Toward the Dock
Captain of the Alliance

Disembarking from the Alliance, we found our way back to the hotel, had a good nights rest and headed home after breakfast.

All in all, a very nice and relaxing 40th Anniversary celebration for Melanie and I. We did learn a few things in our short visit. Williamsburg is still definitely high on our list of options for a final landing spot. The problem at hand is there is simply not that much property in Williamsburg, so finding what we want might be a challenge. Before we left the hotel, we got the name of a local realtor. If we are going to find something in the area, we need someone with their finger on the pulse of the real estate goings on in the area.

Next time, we have a Car Show to talk about.

Stay tuned!

written by Chris - Posted in Fuji, News