Monday, April 18, 2011

Still Washington D.C.

The real posting date here is Sunday, May 15th, and Rob told me he would keep me from taking a Sunday nap unless I catch up here. So I'm hoping to at least finish up our trip.

Day Six: We left early in the morning to make one more attempt at getting tickets for the Washington Monument. Rob waited in line, and Robbie and I started walking toward the Jefferson Memorial. As I said before, we missed the cherry blossoms by only days. It was disappointing to go to the Tidal Basin and see all those green leaves. This was the only tree with blossoms. But because they are repairing the sinking sea wall at the memorial, there wasn't much of a scenic shot anyway. We did the best we could with what we had.

Rob showed up with the disappointing news that the tickets to Washington Monument ran out about 20 people too soon. Oh well. I guess this means we'll have to go back someday.

On the way back we hit the FDR Memorial, which is a huge, 7.5 acre series of fountains, sculptures and engraved stones.

Years ago I read and loved Doris Kearns Goodwin's No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II. Whatever your political views, they lived incredible lives. I especially admire Eleanor.

The famous "Breadline":

We peeked at the construction for the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, which is scheduled to open at the end of this summer, and continued on to the WWII Memorial. It also takes up almost 7.5 acres. This is Freedom Wall—there are 4048 stars, each representing 100 Americans who died in the war. It's hard to read the inscription in front, but it says, "Here we mark the price of freedom."

We took a photo under the Pacific arch, since Rob's grandpa served there.

And of course, in front of the Utah pillar.

After walking all morning, we caught the metro over to the Ford's Theatre neighborhood, hoping to fit in the International Spy Museum, which was one of the main things Robbie wanted to do there. After seeing the line that wrapped around the block, we decided to try to be there when it opened in the morning. Instead, we picked up lunch here. It was good, but I'm not bragging when I say my crepes are way better.

We ate on the steps of the National Portrait Gallery, with a lovely view of the Verizon center, where the Wizards play.

We saw the beautiful Friendship Gate in Chinatown:

Then we returned to the National Air and Space Museum. We loved the Wright Brothers exhibit.

And the space stuff.

I always accept and appreciate any offer to take our photo together, even when the well-meaning photographer takes a shot with us neatly centered and too far away to see.

When the museum closed we walked the block back to our hotel to regroup and come up with a dinner plan. Almost twelve hours of walking had taken their toll though, and Robbie asked if he could just stay at the hotel and have us bring him something to eat. So we took off (without my camera) for Vapiano, which is now one of my favorite restaurants. I love the idea—fast food that is delicious—all fresh ingredients, made-to-order salads, pizza and pastas, reasonable pricing, great service and a fun atmosphere. I wish we had one in SLC. By the time we got Robbie's pizza back to the hotel, he was asleep, and clearly not going to wake up, even for food. Good to know that we maxed out this trip.

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