Entry for June 10, 2008: Virginia visit

On Thursday, May 29, Janice and I drove down to Virginia to visit my family in Virginia. We had good weather and relatively little traffic on our way to my parents' house in the bucolic Blue Ridge Mountains. They're also in the midst of kitchen renovations, which were coming along well.

On Friday morning, we had a good lunch at the Thornton River Grille in Sperryville, Va. (We had originally planned to go somewhere farther away, but my parents needed to be at home to supervise the work on their kitchen floors and counters.) Janice and I then drove into the suburban sprawl of Northern Virginia to my brother's home.

It was great to see Peter, his wife Kelly, and their daughters Ava and Lili. Janice and I enjoy spending time with all our nieces and nephews, but it's especially fun to see how little princess Ava and carnivorous Lili are developing. They're close in age but different in personality. We had originally planned to come down for Lili's baptism, but an uncle's illness postponed that event.

Corbin A.Y. graciously hosted all of us for a cookout at his and Andria K.Y.'s new home not far away. We caught up, admired chez Younger's décor, and got to play a bit with his Wii Fit. I don't currently have the time for a console system, but if I did, I think Janice and I would enjoy the sports simulations and fantasy games. We also played pinball, harkening back to Corb's and my undergraduate days.

After Peter & Kelly left to put the girls to bed, Steve M.R. & Aleece Z.R. arrived with 3-month-old daughter Lauren (their son Connor was with family in Ohio). I'm glad that we were able to meet Lauren, even if my visit wasn't long enough to see other friends in the area.

On Saturday, my parents joined us at Peter & Kelly's place. Unfortunately, thunderstorms prevented us from going to the Dragon Boat Festival in Washington D.C., but we still had a pleasant time together, thanks to Ava's talkativeness and Lili's dance moves. Peter managed to grill lunch before the heavens opened, and we later had a pasta dinner.

On Sunday, Peter, Kelly, Ava, Lili, Janice, and I managed to drive to the Watergate Hotel to see the Dragon Boat regatta. Peter even ran into some co-workers, some of whom were participating in the race on the Potomac River. Unlike similar fairs along the Charles River between Boston and Cambridge, there weren't any Asian food vendors (which may have been present on Saturday), so we found a decent, if pricey, lunch at Nick's Riverside in Washington Harbor.

We later had dinner at Chipotle, a favorite burrito chain. Janice and I reluctantly said our farewells early the next morning. Our long drive back to New England went smoothly. We stopped in New York on the way to have lunch with high school chum Damon F.P. and his wife Nicole P. Again, I would have liked to see more friends, but they'll have to wait for other trips, perhaps to celebrate our cohort's 40th birthdays.

Next time: Kung-Fu Panda!