Saturday, November 13, 2010

On the Road Again~This Time...Vermont

Good-bye Barlett Inn, we enjoyed
your treats but not your tricks!

After our most beautiful drive on the scenic loop we were so grateful we had chosen to move that drive up a day on the advice of the Innkeeper. The weather forecast was promising a big rain storm to follow and they were definitely spot on. We awakened to a dark gray sky and lots of water everywhere.

The trees across the street from the Inn were definitely gorgeous on that dismal morning but we had a chance to see just how much the sunlight plays a part in the beauty of the region. The light and warmth of the sun did in fact play a HUGE role in one of the most beautiful days I have ever experienced, just the day before. We were so excited to head for Vermont and see what adventures it held for our family.

As we traveled through the remainder of the White Mountains we came upon this huge white building. At the time we had no idea what it was but it seems oddly out of place out in the middle of nowhere. The little security building along the road in the foreground can give you a perspective on how immense this place is. We later found out it is a fancy hotel and resort. Made us feel happy about moving on to a place with some amenities as we headed into Quechee, Vermont in hopes of a bathroom with a plug. So if you go to New Hampshire, just know you have a full range of choices for your accommodations! This is the Washington Hotel.

It was a little past lunch time when we arrived at the Visitor's Center in Vermont. It was stormy and cold and very wet but they had this little covered picnic table so we quickly ate there and headed down the road to Quechee. We were so impressed with their Visitors' Center, we just don't have anything like them on the West Coast. New England relies heavily upon and really thrives on their tourism and they put a lot of time and effort into making it a good experience for the traveler. It did not go unnoticed or unappreciated by this family.

On a sunny day this is what Vermont looks like. This photo is from Google Images and one I really appreciate as this was our only rainy, rainy cold day. But the next day we had lots of sun and saw places just like this.

When we arrived in Quechee we noticed this fun looking place right away. As soon as we got settled in our hotel room, we came back here which was only a quarter mile away. This little shopping village had lots of fun stores with art, antiques, designer clothing and jewelry. The Cabot General Store was the center of it all.

They have so many food products and in particular, cheese and dipping sauces and syrups. It was a lot of fun to try some of their samples on oyster crackers. We love Cabot cheddar cheeses but had no idea how many varieties they make and ship. We brought some back for Robert! Laura and I bought several things in the surrounding jewelry stores and I bought a beautiful picture of a Vermont farm house that I have now gotten framed and hanging in our bedroom where the colors (my favorite) are perfecto. I was even able to get Jim's mom some cool earrings for her birthday coming up right after we got home.

The boys had fun with a huge train display they had in the basement of the General Store. We went back the morning we left so they could enjoy it again. We stayed two nights here and that was so nice and relaxing. Jim and I enjoyed a wonderful seafood dinner out. We could walk to the restaurant, The Shepard's Pie, from our hotel. We watched movies, ate that fancy popcorn from Maine and had a great time. Jim and the boys finally had a chance to watch "Holes" together. Laura and I went down to the lobby with the laptop and watched "Leap Year."

The boys and Grampa went swimming and we enjoy a nice breakfast each morning here. We had a great hotel room at the Quality Inn that was clean and spacious and very convenient. ( Yes, they did have a plug in their bathroom!)

They even had a gorge that they say is like a mini Grande Canyon. The mini part is right and the comparison may be a bit of a stretch but it was beautiful and also within walking distance of our hotel. Of course, during our stay the men went to check that all out. Spencer did come back with wet jeans and muddy shoes...don't ask don't tell.

That place looked mighty scary to me with its narrow paths and steep cliffs. I was glad we didn't actually see them hiking around, especially when Spence slipped. Sometimes it is best when Moms and Grammas just look the other way and pray. Thank heavens for a Grampa that watched them closely and would never put them in harm's way. Before long his shoes were all cleaned up and he had a dry pair of pants for the rest of the day.

This photo is taken from the bridge over
Quechee Gorge.
It is a gorgeous place and a
lot deeper and steeper that it looks here.


Marie said...

Bonnie, you had such a lovely holiday. Thanks so much for sharing it all with us, the pictures, the words. It's all so beautiful! xxoo

Dorothy said...

Oh I love this part of the country! I am reminded of one of my favorite books by Wallace Stegner that I bet you would enjoy. It is entitled "Crossing To Safety". Part of it takes place in Vermont. Thanks for the photos. I am loving "travels with Bonnie"!!!

Caroline Craven said...

Believe me, the gorge looks deep enough and steep enough, although seeing it in person is probably so very different than seeing it in photos.

Merrill family said...

Bonnie I am in Love with all you fall pictures I jump from your blog to my other favorite and it puts in a perfect mood now i'm off to sip my hot cocoa! thanks for the smile!