The first day of our road trip was a little hairy, getting used to driving on the wrong side of the road, and taking a few "short" cuts that added hours onto our trip. Also the mountain "resort" we stayed in was rustic in the extreme, and the allegedly acclaimed restaurant served what is absolutely the worst breakfast I've ever had. But there was tap dancing teenagers in the evening, so that was both entertaining, embarrassing and hilarious. Day Two was much better, because a) we ended up in this totally amazing B&B (White Birches in Abingdon); b) we didn't get lost once; and c) we visited Luray Caverns, which is totally like the Goonies. Here's the evidence:
1. You enter the caverns through this fireplace.
Okay, that's not entirely true. You enter through a doorway and a staircase, but it's RIGHT NEXT to the fireplace.
2. It looks a bit like a movie set, (but in actual fact it's 7 million years old).
3. There is an underground wishing well.
4. And an underground organ.
It's not made out of bones like in The Goonies. But it is way cooler. In the 1950s, a guy called Leland W Sprinkle (I know, right?) spent three years tapping different stalagmites and stalactites in the caverns, until he identified 47 different notes, over an area of 3.5 acres. He then devised an ingenious system of rubber mallets and microphones, all wired up to a playable organ. We experienced a performance, and it was amazing.
5. At one point, our tour guide turned off all the lights, and Mj and I held hands and whispered. "I like the dark. I love the dark. But I hate nature. I HATE nature."
6. Black ORV. Bullet holes. BULLET HOLES!