We didn't know what to expect as we headed on our first road trip to tour schools for our daughter in her junior year of High School. We carefully plotted college tours from Connecticut to Burlington Vermont. Everything ran rather smoothly, but the schools all started to seem the same, offering views of funky dorm rooms, and enthusiastic student tour leaders, but when we got to Norton Massachusetts, our daughter refused to dine with us in the student center... We argued for experiencing "the vibe of the student body," but teenager angst and embarrassment overruled any chance of eating on campus. We were banished to a notch above fast food in a nowhere restaurant, that appeared to be some bar lounge for locals.
I was soothed with the knowledge that I would eventually get mine (touring all these Colleges), booked into Forty Putney Road Inn located in the charming town of Brattleboro, Vermont. Over the years I had traveled to Brattleboro on our way to the idyllic Round Robin Horseback riding camp in South Royalton Vermont, you guessed it again for my daughter and her summer activities. This is my favorite town for picking up well-priced antiques in Twice Upon a Time, and grabbing a homemade snicker doodle cookie from Amy's Bakery Arts and Café. Who knew that a former New Yorker would be ensconced as the owner great bakery with home made like food and baked goods in the middle of town?
Forty Putney Road Inn also has an interesting history. Built on land once belonged to the Vermont Asylum for the Insane, today called the Brattleboro Retreat. Dr. Horace G. Ripley and the Trustees began building a superintendent's resident in the fall of 1929. The house remained private until 1992. The present innkeeper was an elected official, equipping her with the hospitality gene!
We were lucky to stay in the Sun & Moon Room. Painted in a strong blue, with hardwood floors, four-poster bed, accented with octangle tiles, cozy robes, provided toothbrush and toothpaste, and lovely ecco friendly toiletries. They even had a basket of free snacks. The master bedroom suite has a fireplace. Windowpanes, but updated with TV (each room fitted with a TV and DVD player) and love seat. The entire inn has access to WiFive, just type in the magic words, maple syrup!
The dining/ main room had a wood fireplace, Keurig coffee -maker 24/7 and a sunroom to kick back and relax. For those who want to venture out they have a hot tub in a separate shed. We had a complimentary breakfast from an enthusiastic cook who made homemade yogurt parfait and special egg dish and savory potatoes and even a personalized blend of Forty Putney Road coffee (this is served 8:00 to 9:30.) Our daughter actually ate with us as we chatted with two fellow travelers. The view overlooks a lovely river, where the innkeeper told me they planned to host a wedding in the gazebo in the summertime. It is perfectly located walking distance of downtown Brattleboro.
Can we give a strong piece of advice to anyone going through the daunting process of touring prospective Colleges with a 17 year old; try to organize a time " to get yours". Book a lovely inn and grab the experience of the last few gasps of traveling with the hope that your teenager might even agree to eat with you!
Stay tuned for our West Coast and New Orleans College tours....
Twice Upon A Time Antiques - 63 Main Street (802) 254-2261
Amy's Bakery Arts Café - 113 Main Street (802) 251-1071 Monday through Thursday