The Philomont General Store sells many emergency wine.

The Philomont General Store sells many emergency provisions…like wine.

Where to be or not to be –which hamlet is for you?

In Middleburg we not only have a Shakespeare festival, we have our very own hamlets. The hamlets that comprise the ring of surrounding neighborhoods and villages where many “Middleburgers” live. There may be a Rosencrantz or Guildenstern lurking about but around here they are probably race horses.

As a realtor I explain to clients moving here from out of the area that the village of Middleburg itself is the hub of the wheel of country life we enjoy in our bucolic environs. Many who are vital participants in Middleburg life actually live outside the Town limits.Lots of us live in hamlets like Aldie, Unison, Upperville, Delaplane, Philomont, Airmont, Bluemont, and even the southern parts of Round Hill and Purcellville. Of course “we will always have Paris”, except that ours is located up near the Ashby Gap.

Key to these smaller communities are the little country stores. At the General Store in Philomont one finds a variety of emergency provisions such as bread, milk, wine, cheese, white wine, sandwiches, red wine —-did I mention that they sell wine? I had a real emergency this afternoon when I realized that we had no milk for breakfast tomorrow. I pulled out my wallet to pay for my milk in the Airmont Store. I realized that I had exactly $1.00 in cash. No credit cards here, so I sheepishly put the milk back and went home to begin an exhaustive search for extra dough. Sudden salvation. I spied that husband tin of loose change that lives on his dresser. All husbands have them. They receive the coins when he empties his pants pockets at night. So, I scooped up the tin, ran back to the store and counted out $5.18 in nickels, dimes,pennies and quarters. The shopkeeper just smiled at me patiently the entire time. Patience exists in greater supply here than in the big city.