Over the weekend I went to Gettysburg and Philadelphia, PA. I know you all missed me. Here’s a little recap of the Gettysburg portion of the trip.
I took the commuter rail home to my folks’ on Friday evening, and Saturday at about 7:30 we hopped in the car and hit the road. I’d forgotten how long that drive is — we didn’t get to Gettysburg until around 4:30, I think. We did stop twice, but they were very fast stops, I’d say no more than 45 minutes total. My Mom & Dad did all the driving, and Mom got stuck with the leg that was all foggy and a little misty. That was a pretty rough leg, but she made it. Dad took a nice nap for that portion of the drive. By the time we got down there my back was bugging me, but it felt better after we walked around the park a bit.
The hotel my parents stay at when they go is located right next to Gettysburg National Military Park, so we walked over to the cemetery after we checked in and visited my grandparents’ graves. My grandfather, who passed away in ’67, was career Air Force and is buried in the Soldier’s National Cemetery, right near the entrance. My grandmother passed away in ’02, and she is now there with him. The last time I was down there was for the burial in October ’02, and at that point the headstone wasn’t ready. It was a bit jarring to see the headstone (I had seen photos from other trips my Mom has made in the meantime), but not as upsetting as I was braced for it to be. Despite the fact that this park is a major tourist attraction, it was incredibly clean and we weren’t bugged by any visitors who walked over to see what we were looking at while we were near the grave. To be fair, it’s not peak tourist season, but there were still a lot of people around — including several troops of Boy Scouts who looked pretty bored and some West Point cadets who were on a class trip of some sort.
Since I was leaving on Sunday afternoon, I didn’t do a whole lot more. On Saturday night, we (my Mom & Dad, Mom’s Uncle Ray and Aunt Ginny, their (grown) kids Michelle and Kathy, and Michelle’s partner Karin) had dinner out, during which there was a whole fiasco with my Aunt Ginny’s steak. Afterwards, we moved the ruckus to Friendly’s. On Sunday morning, my Dad and Mom walked me around the battle site a bit before we met up with Uncle Ray and Aunt Ginny to have breakfast, after which I took off with them for Philadelphia . . . an easy two hour trip!