Two of my friends from NJ drove down to visit for the weekend. They’ve got a brand-new Prius hybrid, and boy, what a cool car. And what great gas mileage!

I took them around Richmond today, but did not make them suffer through the Civil War Center’s film on how poor, sweet, innocent little Richmond was just minding her own business when suddenly, from the North, the whole army came down and burned Richmond to the ground! Oh, and the mud ran red with blood, or something like that. Tom Paine gives a much better rendition of it than I. He saw it three years ago and still laughs about it.

But I took them down Monument Avenue, where the most pertinent question was, “Why are we looking at that guy’s butt?” Stonewall Jackson is the only one facing north. You’d think they might have, I dunno, had Lee facing north, not the guy who was killed early in the war, but what do I know about the War of Northern Agression? (Tom, I did show them the Jeff Davis monument, and the words that had you livid.)

We did a grand tour of Richmond, starting with Carytown. “Any town you can think of that this reminds you of?” I asked. “Montclair,” they answered. I’m convinced that if you teleported someone from Montclair to Richmond, they’d say, “Ooh, look, a new store!” and keep on shopping. Then I took them downtown to Shockoe Bottom and the historic district. We went over three of the bridges over the James. I think there are seven. But they’re going home tomorrow, so we won’t be going on the other four anytime soon.

Dinner at Extra Billy’s, then off to Dogwood Dell for a free evening of musical theater. This week was Steven Sondheim’s “Follies,” and the production was simply excellent. It was the best production I’ve seen yet at the Dell, and I’ve been going there most years since 1991.

I’m so glad. Now I need to find a production of “Company” and I will have seen all of the plays to the Sondheim CDs that I own.

Off to bed. Getting up for breakfast with Kim and Bob before they go home. A nice visit, but too short!

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5 Responses to Follies

  1. Dan says:

    Why not take them to MacArthur’s memorial, down there in Ole Virginie.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Stonewall Jackson! Now don’t you wish he was here today, because we need him . Yeeha ! :)

  3. cond0010 says:

    Stonewall Jackson was both deeply religious and hard on his men.. hmmm… kinda reminds me of Patton… besides being an awesome general.

    Unfortunately, the press would skewer Jackson for both issues. Being an awesome general (in a democracy these days) seems secondary, which is rather unfortunate.

  4. Eric J says:

    I may need to buy you CDs of Sondheim shows you have no hope of ever seeing…

  5. Sarah G. says:

    The reason Stone wall is facing North is because of the following I got from Wikipedia:

    “For the monuments depicting Civil War participants, the statues facing north represent those who died in battle (and thus never safely returned home); the statues facing south represent those who survived the war.”

    I learned about it elsewhere a few years ago, but I forgot the source. The only differnce was the additional nugget about those that face North: since they died before the end of the Civil War they are still fighting it.

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