I’m actually really happy with my schedule this month, I’ve got a few really cool layovers that I am looking forward to. (Now I just have to make sure I start out rested enough to be able to actually explore on these layovers instead of just crashing when I get to the hotel!)
My first long layover is in Hartford Connecticut. I’ve obviously spent way to much time in the south, because I’ve forgotten about seasons, and how early October can actually be cold. My cute sundress just isn’t going to cut it here. (I dread how my bags are about to get lots heavier…going out in the winter just involves so much more packing!)
Usually whenever I get into a new layover city, one of my first things to do is check out Trover. It’s my new favorite app, a bit of a Instagram, Near Me, and Trip Advisor hybrid. Between it and Trip Advisor I almost always find something interesting, and today is now exception.
I decide to head to Samuel Clemons (aka Mark Twain) and Harriet Beecher Stowe’s houses. They are actually right next door to each other, and I just manage to catch a tour. They actually let me join an overbooked one, after I explain that it’s the only one I can catch because I’m on a layover, and they see it’s just me. (Another point for solo exploring!) I have to chuckle because I am easily the youngest in my group by 25 years. (I find that this happens a lot with me…either that, or I’m surrounded by school groups.)
I’m woefully ignorant about both writers, and their lives. I have read some of Mark Twain’s short essays, but none of his books, and I’ve never even tried to read Uncle Toms Cabin. Even so I though the tours were great! Our guide at the Harriet Beecher Stowe house was passionate and approachable. The guide at the mark twain house was a little more formal, while obviously well-informed, I had the feeling that he was afraid we might run off with priceless artifacts….when we were let into the dining room, I noticed that the silverware was actually tied to the lace tablecloth! I’ve never seen that before! It made me rethink our guides supposed paranoia. Maybe people do try to steal things on regular.
It’s weird to think of these two literary giants living next door to each other. They were both in very different parts of their lives-Harriet was downsizing and retired, and Samuel was just starting out, building a career and a family.
After the tours, I walked over to the state capital, and the city park there.
Unfortunately, I’m still broke, so I head back to the hotel to eat my packed lunch and take a quick nap before I have to be down for my pick up and start my trip.