October 13 – Zion Crossroads to Scottsville

Day 16. 500 mile Journey to Salem. Zion Crossroads, VA to Scottsville, VA. About 13.5 miles. 42,000 steps. Overcast to sunny. High 81. Mildly hilly. We slept in an extra hour and a half today, as the walk was shorter. Was a real treat after the 22 mile walk yesterday! Kendall did a theatrical reading of the journal today, supported by strong acting from her dad! So fun!! We were delighted Jane and Kendall walked with us again today! We learned that the original girls/women crossed the James TODAY in 1766, just as we did – though not in the same manner. We felt that historical connection all day, quite strongly, actually, referring to it often. The walk went quite quickly today, as we were again surrounded by the beauty of rural Virginia and walked on simply perfect byways. We continue to be amazed, even overwhelmed, by the kindness and generosity of those whom we meet. As often happens, Lisa was kind enough to set us up with a great picnic lunch – today with fried chicken!- in a church parking lot, today Antioch Baptist Church. Only this day, staff was there. So Lisa asked permission for us to be there. The administrative assistant, Amanda, came outside to greet us and provided two gift bags. The minister, David, blessed us with a beautiful prayer. AND, they allowed us to use their lovely facilities!! David even asked to buy us all dinner, which was simply incredible – though we politely refused. Their interest in our journey and genuine kindness will stick with us forever. While walking very shortly thereafter, a VA highway patrolman approached us with his lights flashing! After a brief moment of FEAR, we realized all was fine. Through a smile, he asked where we were going and shared with us that he was from Pennsylvania, near Bethlehem. A fist bump and a few supportive words later, and he was on his way, leaving a great sigh of relief behind. Lots of loudly barking dogs, cows watching our every move, and rolling hills later, and we were in Scottsville. After checking out the town’s history (was here when the original walk came through!) and floods in a great local park, we ended our walk at James River Brewery, ordered Chinese take out, and headed to the James River Inn, our home for the evening. The view was spectacular, our Chinese food great, and the company exquisite! Yvonne rejoined us tonight and treated us to s’mores for dessert! Hooray for both!! My husband, Mac, and our daughter, Kate joined us for dinner. What a TREAT!! And, each of us had a personalized gift in our rooms sent by Kate, our walking buddy for the first 11 or 12 days, via Yvonne. That was simply overwhelming. Really. Everyone of us had tears in our eyes and thank her so much. There are not adequate words. As I write this, the inn is silent. We are the only ones here tonight and everyone else is asleep. Before I join them, I want to again say thanks to everyone. Deep thanks. For your support, of us, but more importantly, for Salem, and all of the girls and women she has, and will impact. We are all one, every Salem alum, bonded with super glue. And together, we can all do anything, just as Salem taught us. Salem PROUD. Night all. Tomorrow comes early.

– Lucy Rose C’76

Passed the 300 mile mark!!!😍

– Elizabeth Wade C’88

Welcome to the James River! Day 16, About 14 miles from Zion Crossroads, VA to Scottsville, VA

Just like yesterday, our country roads were quiet with no restrooms, restaurants, or any store. We had a picnic lunch at Antioch Baptist Church where Pastor David was very generous with their facilities and was interested in all the details of our journey and provided lots of inspiration and encouragement to us. We finished our day at the James River Brewery and James River Inn- breathtaking views that put me in awe of Virginia’s natural history. #mysalemjourney

– Frances Cronlund

Strava Map – Day 16