Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Return To Montpelier

The final leg of our journey found us back near Lexington where we stayed at Fox Hill, a comfortable B&B that sits in the valley between the Appalachian and Blue Ridge Mountains. The photo is from our little private deck looking east toward the Blue Ridge. I took an early morning walk and got some pictures I like.

They had two hummingbird feeders on the porch and I finally caught those elusive little creatures.

This kitty seems to take visitors in stride. There are also a couple of dogs and 6 or 7 horses and a donkey.

Since we had seen most of Lexington on our way south, Bill decided the event of the day should be a trip back to Montpelier to check on the restoration progress. When we visited last year, things were pretty much in a state of chaos due to all the work that was going on. We were surprised to find that the completion date for this project is September 17, 2008. It looked to us like that was going to be a stretch, due to the amount of work yet to be done.

This was the front last October.

Here's where they are now. Looks pretty good.

The rear of the house last year.
This year -- getting there.
This year, the inside tour didn't permit photographs. The guide said they had been very generous in their photography policy until someone started selling photos online. So no photos inside anymore. The plastering is in progress, but that has to cure and then they will prime and paint. Of course, that has been ongoing for quite a while. All the walls were taken down to the bare studs. They left one room as an educational example of the work that was done. You can see pieces of the lathe and then layers of paint and wall decoration left over from the different families who lived here. We saw different areas of the house this year; they let the tours through but where they are allowed to go depends on who is working where, and they cordon off areas where workmen are busy but you are still constantly ducking somebody carrying a door or a window through the room you are standing in. And all through the tour you hear the noise of tools and machines and the conversation of the workers. The amount of work that has gone into this project is mind boggling. It still looked to us like there was a tremendous amount of work yet to do, so good luck to them on their target date. We are looking forward to seeing the finished masterpiece.

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