This trip marked over 40 years of traveling with my father. This was his last trip, and fittingly enough to a spot he (and my mother) had enjoyed more than 30 times over the course of many years - THE TIDES INN in Irvington, Virginia. He turned 90 the day before we headed south from Baltimore...
I have to admit, I didn't want to do this trip... I didn't think he was strong enough... and I didn't think I could handle having to help him. But to her credit, his longtime assistant Judy said this was a "must do" for his spirits -- and I have to ultimately agree and thank her for pushing me to do this trip. Somehow all the things he couldn't do like simply putting on his socks - he knew he had to do on his own and did.
I'd been with my Mother and him a number of times at The Tides Inn, so it was like coming back to a comfortable spot to be sure. I'd had the good fortune of traveling with Dad to many places, many countries and on many cruises, but this trip will probably be one of the most special ever.
His 90th Birthday was Saturday, 4 October 2008; traveled to Irvington, Virginia 5 to 8 October 2008
THE TIDES INN has wonderful views out over Carter's Creek to the Rappahannock.
Dad at 90 yrs old plus 2-days... while he seemingly could barely walk at times, he managed to climb right into small power boats twice during our stay. He loved the water... which I totally got from him! This is certainly my last photo of him - and maybe his last photo.
A view over the bow back to The Tides Inn.
Christ Church, built in 1735, near The Tides Inn is perhaps the most perfect public buildings in America.
While my parents had been to Tides Inn probably 30 times or more over the years, I had been maybe a half dozen or so myself. One of the stand out memories was that the Inn kept two yachts which did daily cruises and outings. One the beautiful historic Miss Ann and the other contemporary yacht the High Tide. Sadly in the first decade of this new century, economic reality made this type of operation not viable with the High Tide going first and followed in 2009 by the Miss Ann.
The 1924 built MISS ANN is seen here at her Tides Inn berth... sadly she departed for new duties as a cruise vessel in Washington DC just days before our arrival. She had been at The Tides Inn for 52 years.
Dad and I pictured eight years before. From 1992 to this final trip in 2008, he and I took 16 or so trips, mostly cruises which he loved best. He was a great teacher on the love of travel and the art of meeting new people.
Charles Arthur Miller, Jr. - 4 October 1918 to 15 March 2009