Home » Columns »Just Like Nothing (Else) on Earth » Currently Reading:

Just Like Nothing Else on Earth – Hillsboro, VA

February 2, 2012 by Tim Jon filed under Columns, Just Like Nothing (Else) on Earth No Comments
nothing else main in hillsboro grey

Didn’t somebody say, “Every word’s worth about 10,000 pictures”? Well, they should have, if they didn’t, and it would really apply to one of my favorite spots in the heart of the heart of this County. I don’t have to think about the little Town of Hillsboro very long before I’m inundated by images, images, images: the narrow “Main Street” lined by historic homes, a curiously picturesque cemetery on the edge of the community, the landmark Old Stone School, and the reassuring shoulders of the nearby hills themselves.

It’s a good place to take time to reflect and to assess where one’s sentiments lie. If you can’t afford a two-week vacation in the Caribbean, and if you feel the ol’ Northern Virginia stress levels are reaching straight-jacket proportions, you could do far worse than spending a quiet Sunday morning in the hush of little, old Hillsboro.

It may be because I’ve compiled such a trove of good memories in this small space, but here, I always feel at least a bit of the “Balm of Gilead” for the soul (chicken soup, for you non-historians), even if I’m just rushing through on my way to further deliveries on a postal route. Kinda like a quick visit to Granny’s house. Or a shot of your favorite elixir­, whichever’s handier.

See, I’ve visited, or passed through, Hillsboro literally hundreds of times since I moved to Loudoun in 1997: I covered events here as News Director for Wage Radio (like the time Secretary of State Madeline Albright [who has a place up on Harpers Ferry Road] paid a visit to the Elementary School, and talked to the kids about how to get along with world leaders- or anyone else, for that matter). I directed plays at the Old Stone School (I probably staged the most commercially unsuccessful show in Loudoun County community theatre history – Sam Shepard’s True West, in 2001– but I was very proud of its artistic merits) and watched many others here. I toured private art galleries in some of the stately homes along Charles Town Pike, and attended many to-do’s at friends’ houses in and around this memorable community.

And, speaking of Route Nine, I know – I know – many of the residents of Hillsboro will wonder at my choice of their home town as a spot for solitude; anyone trying to get from one end of this tiny ‘burg’ to the other on a late weekday afternoon would have cause to wonder at my sanity. No, I didn’t choose Hillsboro at rush hour as my place for peace; I’d rather get up before dawn on a Sunday and experience the day’s awakening here – even if it means I need to shake a few cobwebs as I tool up the “Pike” – than get caught along a busy Charles Town Pike. Been there, done that – I’ve tried to deliver mail along the stretch from Hillsboro to the West Virginia Line on late (dark) after – noons, and it’s no picnic, I assure you; I do empathize with those who probably think about selling their beloved homes every time an oversize truck rumbles through town and shakes the plaster from the walls.

But that’s not my Hillsboro. My version is always quiet, uncrowded, filled with the friendly pastel colors which would have possibly been selected by a visionary such as Maxfield Parrish – or maybe even Claude Monet. The images I’ve been blessed to experience in and around Hillsboro are truly worth more than a moment’s pause.

But understand, these peaceful micro-seconds that I cherish exist in stark contrast to the greater portion of my (at least, adult) existence of regimentation, self-sacrifice, frequent turmoil, and near-constant work – and perhaps a lack of the sublime – or maybe just my ability to make it so. I’m glad I’ve always been able to muster the feeling of magic in Hillsboro. It lives there.

It’s the wonder I imagine Thomas Wolfe felt in the times and places which inspired works like Look Homeward, Angel, or Of Time and the River. I hope I’m being neither evasive or obvious when I say the sparkle is on the trees, in the sky, the rocks and rivulets of Hillsboro. At least in my version.

You’ll have to find – and write – your own. It’s right there – just up Route Nine from the Route Seven Bypass- about 11 miles west of Leesburg. But I also hope that you find that it’s much further than the mere physical distance – make it a journey for the heart, for the soul; you won’t find a straight line to take you there – or directions from MapQuest. You may never get all the way to the heart of the heart, but, at least you’ll know when you’re on the way. You may even see me.

Comment on this article

By commenting, you agree to abide by our Terms of Service.








The Holocene Climate


(Public Input Loudoun County Board of Supervisors, 7 March, 2017) Figure 1 shows the climate variation over the last million years. The low points on the curve correspond to ice ages when glaciers up to a mile thick covered New …

Choosing To Forgive


By Samuel Moore-Sobel “Truly forgiving is the ability to say, ‘Thank you for giving me that experience.’” James Arthur Ray vaulted into fame on the Oprah Winfrey Show back in the mid-2000’s. Stunned hearing these words while watching The Rise and …

Five Key Retirement Questions


Beyond asking yourself where you see yourself and even what your lifelong goal are, effective retirement and longevity planning begs some very big questions. Review the points below and consider how housing, transportation and health considerations all play a role …

Work Woes


By Michael Oberschneider, Psy.D. Dr. Mike, I’m a manager at a large tech company and my boss has directed me to fire someone on my team, but as a Christian, I just can’t do it. It’s true that the employee …

Joy or Suffering

Lunde new

By Mary Rose Lunde No one likes to suffer. When given the chance, many people would choose to laugh rather than cry, to sit in silence with their friends rather than talk through their feelings, because not even their friends …

Wage Radio


I will always remember – very fondly – the first time I ever set foot on the property at 711 Wage Drive Southwest in Leesburg, Virginia. It was a warm, sunny July morning in 1997, and I’d driven all the …

Speaking Truth to Power


“With public sentiment nothing can fail. Without it nothing can succeed.” Abraham Lincoln On Thursday evening, February 23, I requested the Board of Supervisors pass a proclamation resolving to support the March for Science on Earth Day, April 22 [1]. …

Student News

Congratulations, Class of 2016

6 Jul 2016


Woodgrove High School’s Class Of 2016 Graduation – By Amanda Clark On June 16, Woodgrove’s Class of 2016 was the 5th graduating class to walk the stage and accept their diploma. The ceremony was filled with anticipation as the chorus, …

(Be the first to comment)

Buckland Earns Degree In Medicine

6 Jul 2016


Molly Buckland, D.O., graduated from the West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine with a degree of Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine on May 28. While at WVSOM, Dr. Buckland received the Dr. Roland P. Sharp President’s Award and the James R. …

(Be the first to comment)

Adams Promoted To Lieutenant

6 Jul 2016


Lt. James Adams, from Sterling and a Potomac Falls Halls Graduate, earned the promotion to the rank of Lieutenant. Adams is a Navy Week and Executive Outreach Planner for the Navy Office of Community Outreach in Millington, Tennessee. U.S. Navy …

(Be the first to comment)


March 2017
Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
February 27, 2017 February 28, 2017 March 1, 2017 March 2, 2017 March 3, 2017


March 4, 2017

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event
March 5, 2017
March 6, 2017 March 7, 2017 March 8, 2017 March 9, 2017 March 10, 2017 March 11, 2017 March 12, 2017
March 13, 2017 March 14, 2017 March 15, 2017 March 16, 2017 March 17, 2017 March 18, 2017

Wine & Chili Weekend

Wine & Chili Weekend
March 19, 2017

Joshua Carr River Safety Foundation Rummage Sale

Joshua Carr River Safety Foundation Rummage Sale
March 20, 2017 March 21, 2017 March 22, 2017 March 23, 2017 March 24, 2017

March Fourth Friday

March Fourth Friday
March 25, 2017 March 26, 2017

Spring Brunch

Spring Brunch

Spring Brunch

Spring Brunch
March 27, 2017 March 28, 2017 March 29, 2017 March 30, 2017 March 31, 2017 April 1, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

Nebbiolo Vertical Tasting

Nebbiolo Vertical Tasting

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

Notaviva Vineyards - Bluegrass Jam - FREE event

Old Time Country Ham and Turkey Dinner

Old Time Country Ham and Turkey Dinner
April 2, 2017

”Homage to Mother Earth”

”Homage to Mother Earth”

GALLERY COFFEEHOUSE: Readers Theater, “One Slight Hitch”

GALLERY COFFEEHOUSE: Readers Theater, “One Slight Hitch”
Current Print Issue:
Sign up for our email newsletter:

Recent Comments

  • David on Protecting Free Speech: Constitutionally protected speech is exactly what it sounds like, protected. We all have the legal right to utter nonsensical and...
  • Martha on Protecting Free Speech: Free speech is not a cherished right at the not-quite accredited Patrick Henry College, a religious school that Del. LaRock...
  • Martha Polkey on First Look at Envision Loudoun Results: It remains to be seen whether the direction citizens have provided to the Envision process is actually incorporated into the...
  • David on Protecting Free Speech: Mr. LaRock, I assume that the only reason you weren’t at every School Board meeting in 2005 passionately defending the...
  • LongTimePville on Purcellville Emergency Meeting Postponed to March 10: I bet Kelli Grim flip flops on her conflicts of interest and transparency campaign she ran on and does not...

Steady and NoBull


Sterling Library Moving To New Location

25 Mar 2017


Sterling Library’s current location, 120 Enterprise St., Sterling, will close beginning Saturday, March 25, to prepare for the opening of the new Sterling Library on Saturday, April 15. Patrons can return library materials using the drop box at the new location, 22330 S. Sterling Boulevard. Printer-friendly Related

(Be the first to comment)

Middleburg Gallery Presents Country Pursuits Exhibit

25 Mar 2017

Mr and Mrs Andrews 24x35 59 2016 whelan

The Gallery on Madison in Middleburg is presenting an exhibit of Brian Whelan’s (a London Irish painter now settled in Waterford) ) transcriptions of a gallery of paintings by Thomas Gainsborough, ‘Mr. and Mrs. Andrews’ through April 2. The exhibit includes 23 paintings, two masks, two graphics, and nine preparatory drawings. Printer-friendly Related

(Be the first to comment)

Loudoun Workforce Resource Center Presents STEM Career Fair March 28

16 Mar 2017

Illustration of STEM education word typography design in orange theme with icon ornament elements

Anyone interested in a career in the rapidly growing field of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) is encouraged to attend an upcoming STEM Career Fair in Loudoun. The Loudoun Workforce Resource Center, in partnership with Northern Virginia Community College (NVCC)’s Loudoun campus and NOVA SySTEMic Solutions, is holding a STEM Career Fair Tuesday, March 28, from 1:00 to 4:00 …

(Be the first to comment)

Around Virginia

Virginia Schools Kick Off Statewide Campaign To Encourage Safe Teen Driving


More teen drivers in Virginia will be involved in traffic crashes between the months of May and August than any other time of the year, statistics show. To help save lives and prevent such crashes during the high-risk warm weather months, Virginia schools are kicking off a statewide teen safety …

(Be the first to comment)

Protecting Free Speech


By Dave LaRock (R-33) As elected officials and members of the legislature, our most fundamental responsibility is to protect God-given constitutionally protected rights. The First Amendment of the United States Constitution prohibits the government, including governmental public colleges and universities, from infringing on free speech and the free exercise of …


Walbridge To Run for State Delegate in the 33rd District

Tia walbridge

Tia Walbridge announces her run for the District 33 seat in the Virginia House of Delegates. Walbridge is a wife and mother of two daughters and an active member of the Round Hill community. “Like many people in our district, my family has found its prosperity in a Virginia-based small …

(Be the first to comment)


Vikings Runner-Up at the State Championship 

8 Mar 2017


The Loudoun Valley Vikings are the boy’s runner-up at the VHSL 4A State Indoor Track and Field Championships at Roanoke College.  During the 2015-2016 school year, the Loudoun County School Board approved Indoor Track and Field as a Tier 2 (self-funded) sport.  The seven boys competing scored 48 points, second …

(Be the first to comment)

WLVBC U14 Boys Finish 3rd at VA Beach Event

23 Feb 2017


The Western Loudoun Volleyball Club’s U14 Boys Team garnered 3rd place in their first travel tournament of 2017, the Virginia Beach Invitational. This event was held Feb. 18-19 and featured more than 24 teams from the U14 to U18 age group. The team was second on their net on day …

(Be the first to comment)


  • +2017
  • +2016
  • +2015
  • +2014
  • +2013
  • +2012
  • +2011
  • +2010
  • +2009