If all goes according to plans, our daughter and I are off this morning
on another adventure. We take one every Summer as soon as her school
librarian job ends.
These Mother/Daughter road trips started about 8 years ago when she
invited me to go with her on a trip to the Biltmore Estate in Asheville,
NC. She had been there several times with a friend and had become
enthralled with the place. So off we went on our first adventure. It was
fun and I enjoyed the trip. Her love of the Biltmore continues to grow.
And after spending a Summer as an intern in the Archival Library as
part of her MLIS program, Vanderbilt just runs through her veins. Every
year since, we drive South to her “happy place”.
But this year will be different. She has decided that she wants to
explore the Vanderbilt legacy in Newport, Rhode Island. There are
actually two Summer cottages that belonged to the Vanderbilts in
Newport. The Breakers was the summer home of Cornelius Vanderbilt. It is
a spectacular home and not what I would ever consider a “cottage”. The
other Vanderbilt Mansion is Marble House, home to Mr. And Mrs. William
K. Vanderbilt. I have no idea how they are related, but I am sure our
daughter has the lineage down pat. She is quite up on everything
After a few days in Newport and the surrounding area – maybe a side trip
to Providence, we are going to head to western Massachusetts to see her
adopted Gramma. Gramma Betty is 94 and now lives with her son and
daughter in law. It has been eight years since they have been able to
visit. This is a big surprise for Gramma Betty and I know she will be
thrilled. Her DIL knows we are coming, so we don't have to worry about
her not being home.
The final leg of our journey, after a stop over in Albany, NY to visit
my Godson and family will be the Vanderbilt Mansion National Historic
Site in Hyde Park, New York. This mansion was used primarily in the
Spring and the Fall. In the Summer the family headed to Newport.
This home is a bit different from the Newport ones as it is part of the
National Park Service. The homes in Newport are part of the Preservation
Society of Newport County. The Biltmore Estate in Asheville is owned by
the Biltmore Company and run by family members.
Five days spent with our daughter will be fun. We aren't really Mother
and Daughter on these trips, but rather two friends having a good time.
Of course one friend is considerably older than the other. And the
younger one makes sure the older is fed and rested and having a good
time. And the older one occasionally checks the speedometer.
Seeing all the grandeur of by gone days is interesting. But getting back
to our own nests will be good too. It is fun to see how the elite
lived, but it is better to enjoy how we live in our own little homes and