Pets, Places, & Things, Road Trip

Get Out and Take a Drive

By Bob Tagert

Get Out and Take a Drive

In these uncertain times when we don’t know what the rules are next week, we thought it a good idea and take a drive just to get out of the house. Make no mistake about it…I strongly support the idea of social distancing and that is the point of the article. If we can be sequestered in our homes, apartments or condos, why can’t we take a drive with those we are routinely in contact with or by ourselves.

Do you social distance when you go to the grocery store? If you are like me, you try to, but standing in line at six feet will make you lose your place in line. With all of these rules in mind, I propose to get out to open spaces where you are not around others but for a brief moment and can enjoy this beautiful spring weather and refresh your soul.

As Of Tuesday, March 24th at 12.59 am Governor Northam made it mandatory for all non- essential businesses to be closed. This also applies to our Virginia wineries. You may not even sit at one of their outside tables on the property. However, with participating wineries, you can pre-order on the website, by calling or texting, and then picking up at the winery – some of the wineries are offering free shipping as well. You can even order while driving up the driveway but you can’t get out of your vehicle, an employee will bring your order out and you pay on the spot, cash, check or credit card.

My original premise for this article was to drive out on a beautiful day, buy a bottle and grab a seat but not too close to anyone else. That part, grabbing a seat, is no longer doable, but grabbing a bottle or two of wine for later use if you can find a roadside table or better yet, buy a case and take it home for consumption while you binge on Netflix. These wineries went through hell two years ago with all of the rain. They made a strong comeback last year and had a fabulous crop year. Some of those wines are available now. Take a drive on a beautiful day and help out an industry that is important to the Virginia economy.

If wineries aren’t of interest to you – as an aside, some of the wineries have beautiful sculptures at their entrances that you can stop an admire so make sure you are going slow – there are all sorts of beautiful plants and animals that dot the landscape of the Blue Ridge in the spring time. Lani made a new wooly friend who she affectionately named “Dolly” when we stopped to take photos of a flock of sheep. Dolly came right up to the fence and stuck her head through so she could be petted and in Lani’s normal fashion, she kissed her on the head…don’t ask. You remember when she kissed the llama a couple of years ago?

While you are taking your drive on the beautiful Virginia backroads you can check out the state parks which, as of this writing are still open, but once you park your car stick to social distancing while picnicking and hiking.

On our drive last week we also re-discovered the Marriot Ranch Trail Rides in Linden, Virginia. Located at 4439 Fiery Run off of Hume Road, the Marriot Ranch offers a variety of horse-related activities, none more popular than the ninety-minute trail rides across parts of their beautiful 4,200 acre working cattle ranch. When we were there they were offering individual rides and limited person trail rides but I am sure that has changed. Just keep them in mind for a future outing. And yes…..Lani met “Cletus” the Clydesdale and you know the rest of the story.

I quess that the whole point of this article is to do what is right but at the same time you can still exercise personal freedom if you are smart about it. Don’t go stir crazy, pack a picnic basket with all of the essentials and take a drive to the open spaces, see the beauty of spring…trees are budding, flowers are blooming, the air is clear! Take care friends and take care of each other…

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