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October 5, 2013 / coalstovesinkguest

Early Autumn Comes to the Guesthouse

I recently had the pleasure of spending the better part of the week in the Guesthouse, marking my forth such visit to the excellent establishment. This visit, just spanning the gap from the brutal Virginia summer to the region’s exquisite autumn was particularly enjoyable as it included not only the good food, drink, and especially company found on any visit to the Guesthouse, but also a magnificent thunderstorm, an afternoon kayak trip down the river complete with eight bald eagle sightings and schools of enormous bass, and a final morning spent gathering beautiful produce and pulling mountains of weeds from my hosts’ fabulous garden.

Rather than pontificating over the trip, I’d rather share a few photos that best sum up the pleasures of my visit starting with one of the obligatory evenings spent at the local bar. The evening documented in this photo involved a tour through a range of delicious bourbons, several from the antique collection:

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One of the things I miss the most from my youth spent in the South—aside from warm nights, sweet tea, and properly ripened tomatoes—is a good thunderstorm. Although weather had been dry for ten days before my visit, I was lucky enough to enjoy a powerful, if brief, downpour that harkened back to my childhood in Georgia and Virginia. This shot was taken shortly after the storm cleared:

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The bounty of the grounds surrounding the Guesthouse isn’t limited to the produce from the garden that concludes this post. My hosts germinated the morning glory in the photo below from a single seed and now enjoy a mass of deep green-leaved vines and vivid purple flowers covering a full side of the porch stairway:

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Along with the excellent human company, the Guesthouse always provides a plethora of enjoyable animal interaction as well. Here, the fiercest among the guardians practice their intimidation techniques:

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And, let us not forget the larger four-legged inhabitants of the land. After harvesting and weeding for sometime, my host and I gave the horse a special treat of some slightly-dried corn ears. Who knew the dog would think he’d like some corn, too?

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I’m not sure what the peacock wanted, but he certainly was serious in his intent:

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And finally, I grew up on a good sized parcel of land in middle Georgia with parents’ who maintained a large, if not always terribly successful garden, each summer. As a young child who dreamed of cities and adventure I never fully appreciated the opportunity and benefit this represented to me. Now, as a longtime and happy resident of the (in my opinion) world’s most amazing cities, San Francisco, I struggle to grow a few pitiful tomatoes in hydroponic planters on my patio each summer. What a joy to finish my visit to the Guesthouse with a morning spent in the garden collection this bounty:

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Until next time, may the Guesthouse’s other visitors have as much fun and wonderful times as I did.

-sfjacob

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