Where To? Virginia
How long? 6 days
Mode of Transport? Bus
13WoW – Virginia
Virginia took me back a few decades with their idyllic freshly painted timber homes, with perfectly trimmed green front yards and low whitewashed picket fences.
Think little house on the prairie. Think the ideal middle-class suburban life.
There is so much history here, but you are probably wondering what brought me to this quintessential American small town, right?
Well I’m here for a big fat African wedding!
My Big FAT African Wedding
Lasting 3 days, and with an endless supply of food, laughter and dancing, you wouldn’t have known that the happy couple were pushing 60.
My family are crazy! And when they throw a party, they flipping throw a party!
Friday had in store for us an evening of celebration organised by friends of the bride and groom to be, a rehearsal dinner but with an African style. Jollof rice, kelewele and fried chicken were options amongst the delicious buffet laid out for us.
We all raised a glass, to the bride and groom… cheers!
Saturday had us up early and getting ready for the big day! Running around like headless chickens (my mum’s favourite phrase), rollers flying everywhere, hairpins getting lost down the side of chairs… but not before we popped the champagne and had a toast!
The wedding was beautiful. Simple, and heartfelt, you knew exactly why you were there; to witness these two people so in love finally be united as one.
The reception was lit! You knew exactly why you were there; to dance until your frickin’ feet fall off! The aunties and uncles outshone us youngsters on the dance floor, getting down to tunes like Mama by Kiss Daniel. My mum, my Aunties, my uncles, my cousins, all danced until the early hours. My cousin danced so hard that his clothes were drenched; he looked like he had jumped into a swimming pool. Or a pond.
Sunday had us all in white! For a white pool party and barbecue (no, it’s not a race thing, it’s an American thing… basically you all wear white- think White Chicks). The drinks were flowing freely and the attempt to decorate the pool kind of failed because the balloons popped! But it was a blast! I had a moment with my eight year old cousin when she told me she needed the bathroom and I asked “Am I supposed to help you or can you go by yourself?” I learned that eight year olds can go to the bathroom by themselves. Who knew.
So that was my big fat African wedding – don’t be too jealous!
Herndon Town, VA
The perfect little town of Herndon in Fairfax county is a quiet little place with the population under 30,000. It was not surprising that it reminded me of the little village I live in back home in England, as if you turned back time to 1688, the King of England (Charles II – what a babe) had granted a lot of land (including all of Herndon) to a guy called Thomas Culpeper.
Fast forward time to the 1850’s and you will find the first railroad having been developed in the county which also spurred the naming of Herndon. But you can have a history lesson when you visit yourself, or you could pop by this replica of a steam train in the town centre.
Herndon has two walking trails and eleven neighbourhood parks for when you are needing a bit of the outdoors. It has a museum, golf course and theatre as well as a shopping centre which is where I was able to buy my AT&T sim card. It also has a fairly good bus connection which made it easy for me to travel to from Maryland and to get to the megabus for my next destination; Charlotte, North Carolina.
That’s all I got to see on my Herndon trip but I’m sure I’ll be back. Follow me on to North Carolina in my next blog post!