The Piedmont Driving Club was fortunate once again to be invited to drive the expansive grounds of the North Wales estate in Warrenton, Virginia. Crisp fall weather added color to the already awesome vistas. We traveled a five mile route around the mansion and carriage house, past a sparkling pond and up to the highest point of the property where we stopped for refreshments. The Coxes brought plenty of hot Irish coffee and we were happy to share some with a neighbor who just happened to be out for a hack.
Carl, who knows this property so well, led 10 turn-outs back down the hill, through roads adjacent to the crops, past the sheep, through some woods and finally over a bridge. It was there that he made a sharp left turn and headed directly to the river, then into the water and up the other side! (too much Irish coffee perhaps???) To Carl’s surprise, the water was a LOT deeper than it had been mid-summer.
Undaunted, several whips splashed through. Others who were more cautious after witnessing this spectacle watched from a safe distance. Our distinguished guest, Sir Christopher Hogwood (a well known British conductor and dear friend of the Wolfs) was the hapless passenger on Caroline Collomb’s carriage. He emerged from this adventure a bit wet but in great cheer — he has even posted the video on his web site! (ah, the things one must endure in the “colonies”….)
Usually we record the names of all whips on the picnic drives somewhere in the narrative. This time I’ll separate the group: THOSE who drove (or should I say, “dove?”) into the river: Carl Cox, Al Baturay, Caroline Collomb, Lisa Anderson, Sam Davis, Barbara Wolf and those for whom discretion prevailed: Anne Watkins, Marci Bade, Deb Bauserman, and Pat McCann.
Everyone (albeit some wet, some not) made it safely back to an exquisite courtyard on the grounds where Marci and Keith Bade had laid out a feast. In that Marci is not only a great cook but also very artistic, the table was glorious to look at as well. In so very many ways, it was a special day for the PDC, complete with food, fellowship and fun.