Time for a little R&R and what better way to get some than to retreat to a house in the hills of Luray. A group of us took off Friday after work to escape the business of the city for a little winter (or not so winter) retreat. The house we rented was huge with several beds to accomodate the 21 poeple coming out for the weekend.
Finding the place was the first part of the adventure. The house was located off a dirt road that twisted and turned in the hills where no gps could go and signs were hard to read. At one point, Ruth and I found an abandoned jeep with no one in sight. It looked like a scene from a scary movie ( I had just seen the movie Gone earlier this week with that exact jeep and woods just like this where girls were kidnapped and thrown into a hole to be murdered later so my imagination was a little wild). Eventually we found the house though and all was well.
First things first, get in the hot tub before anyone else has a chance to. It's a little chili out which makes for the best time to sit in a hot tub and let all your stress and troubles melt away in the relaxing jets. Oh how sweet it is. This would be repeated again the following night.
We stayed up late chatting, watching movies playing games and putting puzzles together.
The next morning after a wonderful breakfast of pancakes, eggs, and bacon, Ruth and I took off to go explore the local village of Luray.
While driving toward town, I saw a Civil War historic sign which of course meant we had to stop. Turns out, it was a historic mill called Willows Grove Mill.
We then went into the town to walk the greenway, which is a path that follows a stream through the town. It was a gorgeous day for a lovely stroll. They had painted murals along the side of the buildings that reflected the history, and scenery of the landscape around the town. There were swings to sit on, bridges to cross, cow pastures to smell, ducks to watch, it was such a beautiful, peaceful place.
We found an old one room school house and a slave block that is an original block where slaves would be placed upon, looked over, negotiated and ultimately sold from. There are few of these left and they are a historical treasure to remind us of where we have come in our country today. I love how you can go to any small town out here and find historical artifacts that tell about our nations history.
When we were done exploring the town we went back up to the house in the woods, where I was able to curl up on a chair outside and enjoy the sounds and fresh mountain air while reading my book. How glorious it was. I felt such rejuvenation coming back to me. I retreat into the woods reading a good book is the ideal vacation idea.
The rest of the weekend was really nice. I enjoyed my time with my friends there and being able to relax. Weekend retreats are excellent ideas and should be done more often.