Since I was fifteen I have been dreaming about performing on The Barter stage. I had dreams of being an actor there, of singing and dancing on main stage. Of acting my heart out on stage two, so when one of my dear friends told me that she was hired to work tech for their production of Mary Poppins, I jumped at the chance to work on a Barter show. My friend’s father is a part-time actor there, and she often works on shows when she’s in town. I had driven up for a visit, and ended up with a two-day job, which was absolutely fine by me.
In my time there I set up lighting in their summer tent, painted a set piece, made stars that lit up the nursery in one of the numbers, and helped adjust some lighting. Over all it made me realize A) how much I miss being involved in theatre full-time, and B) how much I still love The Barter after all these years.
After all the work was done we were able to attend the preview of Mary Poppins, and oh wow was it great. Even at a preview where everything was not completely polished the show was wonderful. It’s bright and beautiful, and fun. The dancing in incredible and the singing is great, and of course the acting is top-notch. If you are anywhere near Abingdon this summer I suggest you buy yourself a ticket and indulge in some childhood Disney Magic.
Later that night we attended the premier of the two person play, Mary’s Wedding, playing on stage two. It is a beautiful play about a WWI solider and the girl he left at home. Portrayed as a dream that Mary is having the night before her wedding, you follow the couple from their first meeting and through their love, as they are separated by family, war, and their own pride. It was a beautiful show that left us all in tears. The two actors who play Mary and Charlie are brilliant, I highly recommend the show.
Now let’s talk food, because we all know that food is a big part of my life. First afternoon there we went to Caprese which is this hole in the wall Greek/Italian joint. I had the garlic knot and the Spanakopita, and both were delicious. It was a bit hot because I don’t think their air conditioning worked, but the man who worked there was incredibly nice and the food was good. The next morning we woke up and went to Zazzy’z for coffee. This place has maybe the best coffee (Although oh my cow their dirty Chai is even more amazing) I’ve ever had and that’s saying a lot because there are some dang good coffee places in JC. If you are ever in Arlington, if you do nothing else get coffee at Zazzy’z. For lunch we went to an oldy but a goody, Pop Ellis’. Pop’s is someplace I’ve been going to since I was fourteen, it is the one place I make sure to stop by when I’m in town. They have a great staff, delicious food, and amazing milkshakes. Definitely a staple in the Arlington community, in my opinion. That night we went to Bonfire for BBQ, and holy guacamole I don’t know if I’ve ever had better pulled pork, and their corn bread was to die for, not to mention they have a BBQ sauce bar so everyone can have what they want. After dinner we went to a place called Anthony’s for desert. I had a cherry cheesecake and it was delicious. I returned here a second time and got some Strawberry Sorbet which was also amazing. There is no shortage of delicious food in Abingdon.
The long and short of it is that Abingdon Virginia is one of those places you could see yourself retiring…or just living there forever. I am very sad to see it in my rear view mirror. But I’ll be back soon.