What with it being the 150th anniversary of the War of Northern Aggression and all, it’s the perfect time for us on the East Coast to get out and see the sights. By which I mean, to join a bus tour of senior citizens schlepping around Antietam on the last Saturday of September.
Coincidentally, this is exactly what I did last Saturday.
The weather was amazing. And after the 100 days of 100 degrees DC just went through (slight exaggeration? I WISH), that’s really saying something. Blue skies, foliage just starting to change…fabulous.
This thing started early, you guys. 0745 early. I realize that most of the seniors had already been up for 3-4 hours at that point, but your humble “young person” blogger was only semi-functional. I stayed awake long enough to ensure that the boxed lunches were loaded onto the tour bus, then I drifted off.
We stopped first at a cemetery in Alexandria that I had no idea even existed. Turns out there’s more to the area than Whole Foods. Crazy, right?
It’s hard to tell, but our tour guide was wearing that traveler clothing that has a ton of pockets yet rolls into a tiny pouch the size of, like, a can of tuna. I knew we were in good hands. Even after he handed out the purposed (did he mean “proposed”? I’ll never know) itinerary:
By about stop #13, several of the more elderly women in the group would refuse to get off the bus.
The battlefield, like others I’ve visited, turns out to be much bigger than you’d expect. Maybe it’s a product of my city upbringing, but I always imagine outdoor history taking place in a space the size of a backyard. MAYBE a park if it’s something big, like the signing of the Magna Carta. Then you spend most of a day driving to and tromping around different parts of one single battlefield and it’s a bit of a mindfreak.
Here, some pictures of the battlefield:
And a couple of our lunches:
By the time we got back at 1900, I was beat. (But not as much as the Confederacy, ZING.)