Happy Mothers' Day! Although, I'm sure we won't get to post this until it's over. We ate a delicious breakfast prepared by James and Connie, the owners of Millsap-Baker Estate, with the other guests, a hiker named Nanners, his Mom, and Grandmother. So many Moms. The breakfast was delish, and it was Mary's first time having biscuits and gravy. They also had a huge spread of jams to put on the biscuits.
After breakfast we got into a long conversation about the history of the estate, James's alcoholic master woodcarver uncle, all the horrible things the local healthcare system has screwed up (which essentially ended in the untimely death of James's mother and father), and somehow at the end, the two of us stayed behind to talk video games with James and Connie and their two giant 50" screens and system linked xbox 360s. We miss video games. Afterwards, we messed around getting our stuff packed. We were planning on zeroing, but because this B&B was rather expensive so we thought to try our luck in town.
On the way back into town, we passed a Food City and got our resupply done. We have some wonderful courses planned for the upcoming week (couscous, pasta with sundried tomatoes, Mac n cheese with bacon). We also had to get some pharmacy items. Tyler got really excited and ran across the parking lot to show Emily that he remembered that she needed nail polish remover for her chigger bites. Only it was nail polish she needed. Whoops. He tried. (Also thanks Piper Robbins for the chigger tip.)
On the way through town, we came across the Draginfly Inn. Monty and Jose, who had just arrived that morning, were hanging out on the porch and we heard the breakfast was great. We were sold. The owners were out for a walk so we hung around, checked out the outfitters of which there are many in Damascus. When we came back, Ralph, the owner, was enjoying a shandy on the porch on the beautiful spring day. He had two rooms, a suite, and a small room available in the Dragonfly Inn. They were beautifully decorated, each had private baths, and, as a super bonus, they had three adorable dogs, Bailey, Elton, and a recent addition, Little Black Dog. Ralph said he would get the rooms ready and we headed out to get lunch at the Old Mill Inn.
We treated the parents to some afternoon beers and burgers at the inn, Mary said it was perhaps the best burger she had ever eaten. Then we headed back to the Inn to do laundry and relax. The rest of the day essentially revolves around sitting on the rocking chairs on the porch sipping on this incredible infused ice water that Ralph had made with mint and cantaloupe.
Tyler, Mary and Bruce did make a trip to Crazy Larry's hostel, since the laundromat had been closed five years, and Crazy Larry will do laundry for you. We talked a bit with Larry and the others hanging around in his porch with beers and their funny cigarette. Tyler also met Fancy, who has the unfortunate fame of being the guy that got his expensive down sleeping bag ruined by one of Bob Peoples many cats (complete pee exsplosion).
Back to the real part of the day though, the porch. The porch was wonderful. Mary and Bruce met Jose and Monty and played a game of cribbage. Though Jose had just learned, they beat the Old Fogies at their own game! Pipes, named for the set of light bag pipes he carries with him, gave Tyler his first ever bagpipe lesson. Tyler had a ways to go. Luckily, Pipes was patient and played some amazing jams as the night went on. Emily documented the day, worked and all of us skyped her family on the west coast. We did nothing but enjoy the heat of the sun until around eight when we realized we should grab more food before the town closed down. Trail towns seem to typically close by nine. We got food at Bobo Macfarlanes, and headed back to the Dragonfly Inn.
Before closing, we should make a special mention of the evening's all star, Ralph. He was helpful, friendly, funny, quick to laugh, and just plain awesome. By the end, I think all of us wanted to move in. His beautiful B&B and he himself really made this day truly perfect. Ralph for mayor!