We spent the morning of our first full day in Williamsburg signing away our life at Kings Creek Plantation. Immediately after, we drove out to downtown Williamsburg and got sandwiches at the Cheese Shop because Jeannie told me to and even though I act all tough, in reality I do what people tell me.
Haha, just kidding. But I went along with it this time because Jeannie said the magic word: cheese.
After that, we ventured down the road into the Colonial portion of the town. All the exhibits have an admittance fee, and the resort offered us free passes to watch people churn butter and hammer iron things, god only knows what goes on in those houses, but we traded them in for BUSCH GARDEN TICKETS because please, don’t try to teach us stuff. They* don’t charge you to walk down the street at least, and to spend money in the many novelty shops, so there’s that.
*(I don’t know who “they” are. The ghosts of Williamsburg, I’m guessing.)
“What are those?!” Chooch cried as we walked down A Colonial Street, pointing to a tree pregnant with what looked like dangling alien weeners.
Henry squinted up at the tree.
“Oh, that’s a Toby tree,” he answered in his Know-It-All tone. “We used to smoke those when we were kids.”
OH HELL NO, HOLD UP.
WAIT A MINUTE.
PULL UP A CHAIR TO THE FIREPLACE, PAPA H IS ABOUT TO SPIN A YARN.
And then in true Henry form, he conveniently had nothing else to say. Just straight up sauntered away from the can of worms he left writhing in the Williamsburg heat.
“DID YOU LIKE, GET HIGH FROM IT?!” I screamed, imagining Henry lounging against a tree trunk, puffing on a “Toby,” glazed eyes seeking out fighter jets in the sky.
“What? No!” Henry answered, verbally swatting the fly.
“THEN WHY DID YOU DO IT?!” Chooch demanded.
“I don’t know. It’s just what we did back then!” He was getting defensive at this point.
I kept pressing for more information until he snapped. “There’s nothing else to say! It’s not like I did it constantly!”
The idea of Henry cutting class to smoke a fucking tree had me doing the pee-squat in the middle of some Williamsburg square while Old Folks in seersuckers and capris strolled past at a geriatric pace, taking pictures with their 35mm cameras.
I can honestly attest that I have never seen any of these trees in Pittsburgh. Presumably because Henry smoked them all.
Way to throw away your future, Henry.
“Look, I’m daddy, smoking a tree!” Chooch battle-cried, his exuberance echoing along the square, awakening our forefathers who probably thought it was time to fight another civil war.
Look at what you taught your son, asshole.
Henry’s mom has been staying at our house all week and Chooch just now tried to rat on his dad as I’m writing this.
“Did you know your son used to smoke trees?” Chooch sneered.
Henry’s mom was unfazed. “Oh, yeah. Toby trees. I used to smoke them, too.”
WHAAAAAT IS HAPPENING!?
Now she’s going on and on about it but I can’t hear her because I’m cracking up so bad.
I JUST GOOGLED IT AND IT’S A THING! Henry didn’t make it up after all!
And then we kept walking, in search of some ginger cake thing that the saleslady at the resort urged us to find. She really had the idea of these cakes super hyped up, probably as a distraction to keep reality from setting in as we signed contract after contact, and I didn’t care how much of my face had melted off in the Virginian heat: I was gonna eat a fucking colonial ginger cake.
We finally found a bakery!
The bakery has a well thing!
WALKING TO THE BAKERY.
And of course the ginger cake turned out to be mediocre and I was really sad.
Then I bought post cards, like this one that had Barb’s name written alllll over it. I can totally picture her loafing with this jackass and his 18th century printing press. God, I can only imagine the pamphlets they’d print together, full of anti-Bill Paxton propaganda and slang from 2005.
Then we came back to Kings Creek where Chooch and I had a huge, public argument on a tennis court because I am incapable of teaching people things, but then we managed to go to the pool without causing a spectacle, surprisingly. Meanwhile, my workfriend Colleen commented on something on Facebook, telling me that her parents live in Williamsburg and have read my blog before, so we should go visit them. I pictured her parents opening the door to find my motley crew on their front steps: Chooch and his multi-colored hair, Henry in his nondescript attire with steam billowing out of his ears and a Toby between his lips (HA), and me on the fringe of lunacy. What a fucking sight.
Later that night, we went on a GHOST TOUR which I will write about at a later date. Like tomorrow. Maybe.
That is one of the strangest things I’ve ever heard. Smoking Toby’s? It must be an extremely regional thing. Kids do the darnedest things!
I’ve never even seen those trees in Pittsburgh! I’m so confused. No one ever offered me a strange tree pod to smoke when I was a kid.
When I googled it, I found an article that said it was almost an exclusive Pittsburgh thing! Maybe that was before your time, and they were all relocated after all the smoking Henry’s generation did.
GLENN USED TO SMOKE THEM TOO. Omg.
Ha! You’d think he’d know better by now than to divulge that kind of Intel :-D
Ginger cake sounds pretty great! I’m sad it was mediocre.
Thank you for the postcard! I was so excited to get it!
I bet if it was fresh, it would have been so much better! It wasn’t the worst thing, just not what I was expecting. :(
“The idea of Henry cutting class to smoke a fucking tree had me doing the pee-squat in the middle of some Williamsburg square while Old Folks in seersuckers and capris strolled past at a geriatric pace, taking pictures with their 35mm cameras.
I can honestly attest that I have never seen any of these trees in Pittsburgh. Presumably because Henry smoked them all.”
It’s 8am and I’m in tears. Oh, doesn’t he KNOW BETTER than to supply such ammunition?
What on earth would inspire people to smoke trees?