The wedding went off successfully with a rehearsal gathering Friday night, the event on Saturday, and a family restaurant dinner on Sunday. The newlyweds are off on their honeymoon for a week while we house sit for them with Dasia, our 13-yr old granddaughter.
I have to say this area gets less and less appealing each time we return. It bears no resemblance to the pleasant environs I moved to with my young family 36 years ago. Then:
- The Beltway was 2 lanes in each direction
- Rte 50 through Falls Church/Annandale (where we lived) was and easy 1-2 lanes each way with only occasional traffic lights
- Gallows Rd near our house was a pleasant meandering country road, 1-lane each way
- The new Tysons Corner mall was only 4 years old.
- The Beltway is 4-6 lanes on each side, and under permanent nerve-wracking (re)construction and expansion
- Rte 50 through Falls Church/Annandale is now 3-5 lanes each way riddled with stop lights
- Gallows Rd has blasted out sideways to make room for 3-5 lanes in each direction
- The original Tysons Corner mall has been joined by an even bigger mansion-minded monstrosity across the street
The landscape everywhere is riven with ugly open gashes, construction barriers and detours, mammoth earthmoving equipment. The once pleasant woodland has been slashed and mangled, the lush meadows butchered and defiled. Northern Virginia is UGLY. Not helped by the dismal cloud cover, thick polluted air, and dank chill currently hovering over it. The whole place feels toxic, the traffic heavy and unending. Trucks and flashy cars move and weave without patience or civility, the few pedestrian faces look empty and sad.