the wonderful world of veena.

22 October 2014

veen on the road: the thomas wolfe memorial.

I had some time to kill between checking out of my hotel in Asheville and reporting to Yesterday Spaces in Leicester [about 30 minutes outside town] for wedding duties, so I decided to swing by and check out the Thomas Wolfe Memorial.

Located near downtown, the boardinghouse that Wolfe's mother ran throughout his childhood is now open for tours. Adjacent to the home is a small museum that holds artifacts from Wolfe's life and houses a theater that shows a film about Wolfe.

Being early on a Thursday in August, there was no one else in the museum when I arrived. I arranged to take a tour and then strolled through the exhibit about Wolfe's life and work. I really didn't know anything about Thomas Wolfe going into my visit, so the whole thing was pretty educational.

It only took about 20-30 minutes to walk through the exhibit, after which I watched a film that brought to life much of what I had just read and seen. It talks about Wolfe's childhood in Asheville, his unhappy family life, and his adolescent exploits in college and later in New York City.

When I emerged from the theater, I was notified that no one else had signed up for a tour, so I got a one-on-one tour through the house. Pretty cool, if I do say so myself. Wolfe's mother bought and ran a boardinghouse when Wolfe was a young boy, and he spent his childhood and adolescence in and out of the home. It is still set up in the much the way it would have been back then, and because I was the only person on the tour, I got a lot of extra tidbits and details that you might not get in a larger group [at least, that's what I like to tell myself].

It was certainly an interesting visit, and I loved learning things I didn't previously know. I am definitely interested in reading some of his work now that I have visited the home in which he grew up. Any suggestions?

If you're interested in visiting:
  • located at 52 North Market Street, Asheville, NC 28801
  • tours are only $5. well worth it, in my opinion
  • October is apparently Thomas Wolfe Month! check out their website for further details
  • if you live in Asheville, a Thomas Wolfe Book Club is beginning in January 2015! check the website if you are interested
And so wraps up my individual posts from my road trip. It's taken us a few months to get to this point, but I think I finally got all of it posted. I've got a few more posts in the works, including my favourite eats from the road as well as the books I read and listened to while I was away; those will hopefully be finished and published next week. It was such a great trip, and I have loved reliving it and remembering tiny details as I've been writing these posts, and I can only hope they have been marginally entertaining for you as well.

And now on to suggestions for posts now that this adventure is finally coming to a close!

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