Monday, July 7, 2014

Beauty and Battleships in Norfolk, Virginia

My 4th of July weekend festivities have inspired me to continue celebrating America by posting about my trip to one of the original 13 colonies -- Virginia.

Happy Birthday, U.S.A. Looking good at 238.
My friend Jen, who once joined me on the cheapest trip of our lives to the Bahamas, moved to Virginia about two years ago, where she took on a gig as a college-professor-slash-full-grown-up-person. I visited her in Norfolk last summer, where we caught up, re-watched Zoolander (because Zoolander), and explored the city's beautiful residential neighborhoods.

I'm from Miami, which is an unusual, infuriating, lively, screwed-up, wonderfully wacky city. I love the palm trees and the humidity and the Cuban pastries and the water views from friends' condos. But, man, sometimes I just long for a house with a veranda and a rocking chair, you know? Enter Norfolk.

Adorably American
Seriously, EVERY house looked like this
I mean, come on, people.
I envy that Jen gets to step outside her apartment building and enjoy a quiet stroll in such a lovely neighborhood. Let's stroll with Jen.

This is me, strolling
Appreciating the beautiful architecture
And the pretty flowers
And this cuteness
Look, a lime green bike!
It doesn't get much more American than Colonial Ave
Thanks, Jen!
There's more to the city than pleasant strolling, though. The largest Navy base in the world is located in Norfolk, so there's also a battleship. Yup. One of the largest ever built by the U.S. Navy -- the USS Wisconsin.

Big freaking battleship
Visitors can tour the entire ship. Large as it is, I felt claustrophobic in the cramped, muggy sleeping quarters. I can't imagine spending months aboard a vessel like this, though I'm sure the men and women of the U.S. Navy have bigger concerns than tiny bunk beds. 

Below, a series of photos of me acting a fool in the battleship. I'm on a boat!

Okay, not technically on the ship yet, but what's with the mermaid?
In deep thought
Danger! Danger!
R2-D2? What are you doing here?
I'm NOT naked behind this metal contraption
Auditioning for a horror film
"Jen, would you take an awkward twisty stairs picture of me? Thanks."
Still not getting the whole mermaid thing, but I'll play along; 
also, mermaids have enormous heads, apparently
And that's a wrap on my all-American adventures in Norfolk, Virginia. More posts to come on Virginia Beach and Portsmouth, Virginia.

For more pictures of my trip to Virginia, visit my photo gallery.

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