Because of Patriot's Day (Emily says it's the holiday they made up so no one has to drive through the Boston Marathon to get to work), Emily has Monday off and an extra weekend day for homework. Thus, I got to visit her this weekend!
Amherst is a very pretty town with some good bakeries and U Mass is a nice college. I left home on Saturday, later than I expected because everything takes longer than you expect it to. When I got to Amherst, I was ready for lunch which we had at the most excellent Black Sheep deli. If you ever are within a half hour's drive of it, make the trip. The deserts are nice; there's a 3 or 4 desert vegan selection, but no gluten free option sadly. The sandwiches are good (again no gluten free option). The coffee is fine; there's good soup and often live music. We sat in and had a sandwich and desert then went to Emily's room and chatted for a while.
Eventually we went to my B&B, The Knolls, and checked in. It is a funny place, run by a man and woman who do a very nice job, but seem somewhat rickety. I don't know if you can see from this picture how huge the front yard is, but it looks like a subdivision could be built in the front yard and another two or three in the back yard. You can see the house under the trees in the middle if you go in three or four times. I'd stay there again although it's kind of far from Amherst. Some of us are not so good at planning and it was the closest B&B with an open room I could find.
After checking in and marvelling at the grounds, Emily and I went to Northampton and walked around for a while. I always forget what it's like to be in a city at night--even a small city. People walk around and restaurants, bars and shops are open. It's not at all like Exeter where only the two ice cream shops are open after dark. There are several galleries in Northampton and a few little stores selling interesting, expensive, gifty-type things. There were several high end resale shops.
We had dinner at a Noodle cafe and then returned to the B&B to do a crossword puzzle. It was great to see her.
I am grateful that I am able to spend time with Emily and hopeful I can do a lot more crossword puzzles with her in the future. I hope you can have fun with those you love, too.