Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Weekend Getaway

When someone offers a night's stay in West Virginia's most haunted hotel, with dinner and breakfast included, for the low price of $65, would you sign up? You know I did! Charles Winslow of the Wells Inn made just such an offer for Facebook friends only, for last Saturday night. If you've been a reader for a while you know that I love the Wells Inn, and you know that it took me only a few minutes to call and make a reservation.

I knew that Saturday was going to be a busy day of storytelling. Three ghost stories programs at three libraries, to be exact. So a night at the Wells with a good dinner and breakfast and some time to wander the town after dark sounded like just the right way to relax after all that work (well, I suppose it's work but it really doesn't seem like it to me).

Larry and I traveled from one gig to another, setting up the decorations in record time. I did not take photos of the decorations, unfortunately--we were really on a tight schedule and I did not even think of bringing my camera in! I brought things that were simple to set up: plastic pumpkins with several battery-powered tealights in them to make them flicker like real jack-o-lanterns, deep purple satin table coverings that were printed with moons and stars, tall Halloween flags at either end of the table (I had to make my own stands for these), light-up ghosts, more tealights on the table, and then my puppets: the witch, rat, wolf, bat, cat, dog, ghosts, owl...it made a great display and we could put it up and take it down in minutes.

We finished the last show at 4pm and headed home to pack. We were packed, had the animals taken care of and back on the road by 5:30, no mean feat when you consider that the last show was an hour and 15 minutes from home. We arrived at the Wells at 7pm, just in time for dinner. One of these days I will also remember to take photos of the food they serve. The portions are huge and the fare is just delicious.

After dinner we headed out to walk, a necessity after all that good food. Town was quiet, with rain in the offing.



We didn't walk far before we saw a sign in front of the Gaslight Theater that advertised "Horror Stories." Storytelling? Really? I had to find out so we ventured in. As it turned out, the show had just ended. It was a performance by an acting troupe from a nearby city. We got into conversation with the new owner of the theater who told us he had also opened a gallery next door. He has many plans for the two facilities and we had a good conversation about some possibilities for storytelling there in the future.

We continued our walk, passing the unusual octagonal Town Hall building, with the old jail located below:

 The lighting just called for this photo:
and this one:


The stairs going up behind the window fascinated me. Where do they lead? One day I hope I can explore inside this building.

Dark alleys invited thoughts of wandering spirits:

And overhead, a circle of orbs watched:

We returned to the Wells for some indoor exploration--to be more precise, to visit the old Wooden Derrick lounge, which has been closed since 2001. The lounge, located in the basement of the Wells Inn, was once filled with local roustabouts and oilmen in the drilling heyday of the early 1900's. It would probably be filled today too, if the State of West Virginia would see fit to grant the license that the Wells applied for months ago. Instead the lounge is being used as a storage area. Larry and I took a glass of wine down to the lounge so that we could, in theory at least, have a drink in the Wooden Derrick:

The mirror behind us interested me so I had to take a picture of it too:

For some reason it looks smoky in the photos although it was really clear.

In the morning, the world looked different--foggy but bright. Doug was out front of the Wells selling produce so we loaded up with fresh cabbage, tomatoes, cucumbers and zucchini before we left.
Then we headed back down the river, enjoying the fall scenery and watching the barges pass. It was a lovely getaway and just what we needed after a busy, busy week.

10 comments:

A Vintage Green said...

Loved your Wells story/trip and pictures. Always a treat.
- Joy

Rowan said...

Sounds like a fun day but you must have been ready to relax after all that storytelling. Wish I could have come and listened to your Halloween stories:)

Granny Sue said...

We were absolutely ready to relax! The storytelling was fun, three completely different kinds of audiences. I have to be prepared for that. The first group was mainly an adult audience of about 15 people and was publicized as being for audiences 8 years old and up. For them I could do some of the more detailed stories and some of the murder/ghost ballads. The second group was mostly very young children and parents, about 70 people I'd guess. The children were all in costume and so cute! For that group I did the not-so-scary, participation stories and songs. The last group was about 10 people and all were over 8 years old. It was publicized as being for little ones, so I set up the puppets, etc, but actually told the set planned for older audiences.

Mama-Bug said...

I would have loved to walk around there at night! The night photos were awesome especially the window with the stairs got my curiosity up! So glad you had a wonderful getaway!

Granny Sue said...

It was especially intriguing down by the river, Mama-Bug--the soft lapping of the water, the silent ferry, and the twinkle of lights on the other side of the river created quite an atmosphere.

I had hoped to go up to Greenwood cemetery at night but Larry was tired so we didn't go. One day, though, I will go there at night.

Nance said...

oh. (wide eyed) Sue, I'll go down to the Greenwood Cemetery with you, at night. Enjoyed this journey. thanks for posting.

A Vintage Green said...

Hi again today. I haven't 'passed on' anything before because I haven't 'received an award' before but today I did.

I 'received' a Liebster Blog Award today - a 'pass it on' way to share newer blogs through your own blog - kind of like a linky. You can see it on my post and follow up or not.
Take a peek anyway and 'share your links' if you like.

You are only 2 followers away from 200, I hope you don't mind having your blog listed on the award. You don't have to do anything, its just a 'sharing' that someone thought up.
- Joy

Granny Sue said...

Thanks, Joy! I'll check into it. I need to do something to shake up this blog, it's been kind of stagnating lately. This might be just what it needs :)

Marie said...

GREAT place to visit! I LOVED your photographs. This was a really interesting post.

Granny Sue said...

Thanks, Marie!

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