January 12, 2012

Trip to Gettysburg

This happens to me a lot: Sometimes I have so much fun, I have nothing to write about. At first, this may seem counterintuitive but thinking deeper on it, it makes a lot of sense. If you are too busy having fun, you are not thinking about how you are going to write about the fun you just had.

We all know people who are good storytellers, who can make the mundane seem extraordinary. You know that person who can write about something with such imagination and passion that you'd believe that the thing that they just did was the most interesting thing in the world? You might even wish you were with them. Until you remember that you were with them and it was really boring. I'd like to call this the Facebook Effect, as this seems to be the case with a lot of the content on Facebook, but I feel I've been harsh to Facebook as it tends to unfairly represent all social media. Many sites refer to this "everyone is having more fun than me" sensation as the "fear of missing out."

This is the opposite of that. This is when you experience and learn so much that you don't even know where to begin. You have so much to say that words fail you. In time, I'll be able to sieve my experiences and write about them, but right now, I am overloaded with Civil War bliss and can't think of anything to write. Normally when this happens, I just post photos.

I finally got to do some of the historical stuff I have been wanting to do. I visit a lot of historical sites during the summer, but most of the time, it is while reenacting. Reenacting is fun, but sometimes I really just want to see the historic sites and learn about the history. There is something very special about standing on the ground where something momentous took place.

Yesterday and today, Andy and I did the full tour of Gettysburg. It is always raining when we go and we have never been able to visit all of the things we'd like to see. We normally do the "quick and dirty" tour and leave. Yes, it was raining today, but we decided we'd do it anyway. :D Gettysburg is normally a lot of fun, but we very much enjoyed getting to see much more than we normally do.

P.S. Just so this post doesn't unfairly represent our experiences, I leave the following disclaimer:  

It was cold. It was raining. I slipped on a rock near Spangler's Spring; hurting my ankle, knee and pride. Our hotel was renovating. We locked our keys in the car (and lost the spare.) We had numerous camera troubles, in particular places of personal interest, such as the monument dedicated to the regiment that Andy's ancestors were in. We spent a good 40 minutes in the muddy woods looking for a rock formation. Our directions to the hotel were wrong. :D               


  1. Rain or shine, lost or slip-in-the-mud, I'll take Gettysburg everytime!!
    Have you ever taken the town tour? We do every visit - always learning something new.

  2. I so totally relate to what you said about standing in a place where something momentous happened. I get that same feeling when finding papers that were written by or signed by my ancestors--a strange sense of connecting.

    Really appreciated your comments on "The Facebook Effect." Good point. But you needn't feel compelled to add disclaimers to everything you do. Life is a process. If all the good stories had to stop and insert "went to bathroom here" there would BE no good stories!

  3. I love Gettysburg. I get what you called that "Civil War bliss" there too. Nice shot of the RR cut...what a place of some real gruesome fighting that first day. You can feel the history when you stand there.

    I still love watching the sunset from LRT the best.

    Hope your ankle is better.

  4. Gettysburg is one of my favorite places in the whole world! It's only about 2 to 2 and a half hours from where I live! I'm getting in the historical mood too, I haven't visited a historical site since the summer. I hope your spring semester is going well!!!

  5. Ken, I saw the photos that you took of your wife on the cover of Citizen's Companion in Abraham's Lady. They were very nice!

  6. Jacqi, :D We had a lot of problems on this trip but it hasn't been any less fun. I agree, I am a huge fan of great stories.

  7. Loree, I was very happy to get to see that. Would you believe that we had never stopped there before?

  8. Mary, it's about the same from me and yet we only go about once a year and it's normally a day trip. This is the first time we've stayed over and it really was worth it to not have to rush through everything.

    My semester starts next week but my sisters are already in school. :D I hope yours is going good too.

  9. Hi, My Wife used to work for the NPS at Gettysburg and we spent part of our honeymoon there for Remembrance Day in 1984. We've gone back a good number of times including reenactments, and it's always special anytime of the year.
    While my son wasn't impressed my daughter has been when we've gone. We want them to know that their GGG grandfather on their mother's side fought in the 116th Penn.(Irish Brigade) and lost an arm there. Last Aug we stayed in the renovated Hotel where President Lincoln stayed in 1863. Nice.

  10. Sounds like the first time I went in 8th grade. It was cold and slippery. The other two times I went it was sunny and warm. Next time you go give me a shout because I'd love to go. I ♥ Gettysburg!

  11. Scott, My parents kept asking what we did there, not satisfied with "we saw the battlefield." :D

    Jess, I do believe we will be going back soon with a bunch of people.


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