March 1, 2014


Today, Land of Excess goes on and on.  We bring you an aerial view of a residential building (red arrow) on Strawfield Lane in the Gulick Group development “Riverbend” in Great Falls, VA.  It is available to you for only $2,199,000 with garaging for 4, 6 full and 1 partial bath, and 6 bedrooms. Our starting point for today’s post must be our long festering resentment that that this so-called Strawfield Lane was not in fact plowed into a strawfield.  It was plowed, in 2001, into a neglected but still-producing hayfield which was the first large open property visible in Great Falls as approached from the east.  We always felt that the existence of this field served to announce to travelers coming from Washington that they had finally reached rural-ty.  Anyway, we suppose that it might seem a minor quibble, hayfield vs. strawfield, but it irks us in its historical inaccuracy.  And plus we really despise this custom of naming or in this case misnaming developments or their features after the things that were destroyed to make way for those developments.  And anyway, they might as well have named this lane “Drainfield Court” after an existing feature: the county requires that developers install “stormwater ponds” that act as catchbasins (see blue arrow) to help manage the runoff created from all the new pavement and roof area in a development.  But sadly even though this catchbasin sometimes fills up, it isn’t always able to do the job properly and runoff pours over the driveway of our old family friends who live in the antique house built in 1831 that still remains nearby (see yellow arrow).  We happen to have lots of ideas about improving the function and the aesthetics of this catchbasin but will spare our readers today.  To continue, and wiping the foam from our mouths, we move on to the house indicated by the green arrow, which was the home of the lovely couple who made the unfortunate decision to sell the property that was eventually developed.   And lastly we can’t resist noting the old location, via the purple arrow, of some wild blackberry bushes from which we picked the berries for pies as children.