Roosevelt, Muir, Clio and Me: A Novel of Loss and Discovery by David Matthew Wilcox
Excerpt from Chapter One “Going East”:
Winston Dash was driving to D.C. It was his first time east since his
wife had died, leaving him in charge of their two teen-age daughters.
Memories flooded through his head as the highways turned into freeways,
the freeways into toll ways. He thought of their last East Coast family
vacation, to Philadelphia, Gettysburg, to the Shenandoah River Valley,
Williamsburg, and Washington D.C. It was the bicentennial year, and everywhere
there seemed to be a party. For a young historian and his family, this
was the trip of a lifetime. He smiled. Then he laughed out loud as he remembered
how the summer heat of Philadelphia had won for him a trip to a second
Civil War battlefield in one vacation. Elizabeth had not liked the crowds
of Philadelphia, especially with two little ones in tow.
She said, “The city is dirty and cramped and hot, and if you don’t take us
back to the motel right now, I will puke right here.”
The idea of Elizabeth puking was always an unwelcome one, especially
at that moment given their location. For at that moment, they were all sitting
in one of the oldest churches in the oldest part of Philadelphia; specifically in
a pew marked, “George Washington worshipped here” or something to that
effect. Still, Winston resisted.