Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Day 11-12 Road Trip '11: West Virginia



Why West Virginia, you ask? Didn't you know that Lewisburg, WV has been voted the coolest small town in America? Go look it up.

The drive to West Virginia was not fun. Well, no. The drive TO West Virginia was quite pleasant. Sunny with a breeze, straight-line highways, and cheery skies. The drive THROUGH West Virginia was stormy, windy, and full of near-death experiences. I gripped the steering wheel so hard that there were multiple times I'd cramp up and have to stretch. MY HANDS.

I was literally hydroplaning through those highways. I thought I was cookin at 40 mph, but everyone else must have known something I didn't because they were screaming past me with dirty looks. My body was so tense (and probably malnourished. I think I had nothing more than a mountain dew all day) that I had to stop maybe three times. THREE TIMES! To put that in perspective, I stopped twice in 800 miles on an earlier day, and had to stop three times in WEST VIRGINIA.

But seeing my long nearly-lost friend Adrianna made up for it. I say nearly-lost because every time something threatens to put the kabosh on our friendship - like one of us moving across the ocean in a world before computers - we have found a way to stay in touch. Go technology. Go us. we've known each other since the FOURTH GRADE. Beat that.

We hit up the Greenbrier while I was there. The Greenbrier is this luxury resort located in eastern West Virginia that's been around for a couple hundred years. Very Victorian. Or whatever style of architecture is old and grand. It's full of marble and really bright green and pink interior decorating.

The thing about it is, during the Cold War, the Greenbrier underwent some massive renovations. Turns out the government also put a top secret bunker underneath it at the time in case of a nuclear attack on Washington! This was a legit underground bunker for the President, Vice President, and both houses of Congress to rendezvous should an attack occur. There were rooms enough for all of Congress and their families, plus staff. It housed a few thousand people, had food, shelter, electricity and water, and protection. Pretty incredible.



The most incredible thing about it (to me) was that it stayed a secret for THIRTY YEARS. I'm blown away that such a monumental task was kept secret. The people from the town knew that SOMETHING was up, but they didn't know what. There were bunker-workers who worked undercover in the hotel so that they could maintain bunker operations throughout the entire 30 years. There were massive vault doors all over the hotel hidden behind walls. Trucks even drove through this service tunnel. The entrance was a wall that swung open. There was also another entrance that, from the outside, looked like a garage door with a sign that read "high voltage." Ha.

I was only in WV for a night and a day. The bunker was very cool, but the real highlight was seeing Adrianna.

And then it was off to NEW YORK CITY. NEW. YORK. CITY. NEWYORKCITY. I love that city.

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