by Dwayne Phillips
Sometimes you are right at something, but you cannot see it. Then you tell people that the thing isn’t there. Then you learn later that you were standing on it. Then, well I don’t know what happens then.
Such is Natural Bridge in Rockbridge County Virginia (the county is of course named after the rock bridge). Here come the links.
Wikipedia’s page on the Natural Bridge has several excellent photos taken from below. One of the “photos” is from a painting in the 1800s. The text of the article states that Route 11 runs on top of the bridge. I walked on Route 11 right there. I didn’t see anything except a big wooden fence that blocks the view of everything. I edited the Wikipedia page so that it no longer claimed that Route 11 passes on the bridge. Someone changed it back the next day. They were right; I was wrong.
Well, I went back to look at aerial photos of the place. This site gives the best aerial photo I could find (Virginia Home Town Locator). Wait a minute! The creek that shows up in all the photos of the bridge does seem to go right under Route 11.
Then I zoomed in on this photo from Natural Bridge taken in 2005. It was taken at a time of year when most of the leaves are gone from the trees. (Click on the photo on this page, then click again to continue to zoom in.) At the top of the photo, on the right end of the bridge are road signs. To the left end of the bridge is a big wooden fence. Those things aren’t visible in the other photos that were taken when the trees were covered with leaves.
But there it is. The big wooden fence that I saw on Route 11 while walking. I was standing on Natural Bridge the whole time. I couldn’t see it because I was looking for it to be off in the distance. As the saying goes,
it was right under my nose
I cannot believe it. Well, you learn something new everyday. Sometimes that something new comes 18 months after you did it.