Washington, D.C.

We got up early, for me and the kids, to catch the shuttle into Washington, D.C.  We arrived around 9:30 right in front of the Capitol.  Sadly, it was Sunday so it was closed to tours... 

You will notice in this post a lack of pictures of the reflecting pools.  They were all drained and appeared to be under construction/restoration/repair.

After getting the pictures above, we hustled down to a major bucket list item.  The Air & Space Museum.  It was on everyone's list of things to see.

The Smithsonian Castle (Crypt and Information Center) - Look a quick glimpse at our imaginary children.

The Washington Monument, sadly, is still closed due to that earthquake.

We hiked down to the Lincoln Memorial.  Walked right by the WWII, thinking that we'd hit it on the way back.  Alas that did not happen, but we were soooo hungry at this point and looking for food.  Which we found across the street from Honest Abe, there is a seriously lack of food on this section of the walk.

After a quick look at Abe, it was off to the Vietnam Memorial.  This is the point where we had to explain to the imaginary kids about respect for the fallen.  It is interesting to note that we visited two that did not have anywhere near the same feel as this monument.  Was it because the history is nearer to my generation?  Or is because people in general act less respectful at the Washington and Lincoln Monuments?  Or is there something different here?  I think there is something different at the Vietnam memorial.....  Not to mention the number of names written on just the small stones is just hard to comprehend.

A shot of the Washington, as we were leaving the Vietnam Memorial-

Next up, the "Light House...no honey, it's the White House"-  We had seen Marine One fly off earlier in the day.....

Now for the American History Museum -
Hey Frank,
we saw the Original Star Spangled Banner.. one of many full circle moments.  They don't allow photography in the exhibit.

Another full circle moment- In North Platte, we toured an old mail train.
"Kermit the Frog here...."
Shawn has found memories of this -

1/3 through this museum was about this time that exhaustion set in.  Up to this point we had walked 4.8 miles, not including ground covered in the museums.  It was now about 2:30.  We needed to get back to the Capitol Building by 4:30, find a letter box to mail postcards and no one was feeling very spry.  We arrived back about 4pm, grabbed something cold to eat, and gratefully sat waiting for the shuttle.

Sadly, we didn't even get a glimpse of the Jefferson Memorial, the Korean War Memorial, Arlington Cemetary.  Nor did we get back to the WWII Memorial.  I popped into the art museum to use the facilities took one picture and rejoined Shawn and the imaginary children.

We were told we could see all the monuments, by someone who had done it the day before but hadn't visited any museums.  The museums take a lot of time (an hour at the Air & Space) and that's at a very fast pace.  Not a relaxing, read the plaques kind of pace.  We were on the go so much that we just got the Junior Ranger Booklets and will mail them in for the badges.

Food appears to be scarce in the area.


DC is a very difficult place to visit in a short amount of time. I have been more than 10 times and every time I go I see something new. The Reflecting Pool has been drained for over a year for refurbishment. I am in the city most every Memorial Day and was hoping it would be finished by this year, not so, maybe next year.I also suggest seeing the city at night if you ever have the option. The Memorials are open 24 hours a day and many of them take on a whole new appearance in the dark. Particularly the Korean War Memorial, where you would swear the Soldiers are going to start talking to you they look so real. Enjoy following your travels! Have fun!

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