Because of all the walking yesterday (and getting lost), we decided that maybe the best way to tour all of the monuments, memorials, and museums would be by bus. Or, better yet, by trolley.
It’s about $35 a person, and the way it works is that you can get on and off at the different stops as much as you like. The trolleys come by every thirty minutes, and then you can go to a next stop. Or ride the whole tour and listen to everything the tour guide has to say. All day, from 9am to 5pm.
We got on at stop 6, outside the Air and Space Museum (oh the memories) and rode all the way to the Lincoln Memorial. We thought that maybe we’d just ride the whole tour, listening for the first hour, and then start getting off and visiting the sights. But I got so excited to be close to the Lincoln Memorial that I was ready to get out.
I read that the sculpture wanted the statue to represent “Lincoln the president, the humanitarian and the preserver of the Union, with the burdens of war reflected in the rugged features.”
It’s true. I never looked closely enough. But he looks so troubled.
Outside the the memorial, a little bit down the lane, is the Vietnam Memorial, where we were surprised to find a familiar name.
We’ll be researching the name later. You never know. And I do believe our ancestors came from West Virginia.
We got on the trolley again and made our way to the Museum of American History, because the tour guide sold us with the first ladies’ gallery of gowns, Julia Child’s kitchen, and the ruby slippers Dorothy wore in the Wizard of Oz.
Our motto for this stop was “see and leave” so that we’d have time to do everything else. Though it was hard not to take my time through the dress gallery. I was proud of myself for being able to somewhat distinguish the eras from the dresses.
The lights in the room with the slippers were crazy dim. I can understand it’s for preservation, but it gets hard to see the details you look for when seeing something in person. These slippers were a little more than an inch, though, it seemed. So Dorothy’s feet had to hurt. I don’t think she sat once during the whole movie. Those were my thoughts on the subject.
I almost forgot about Julia Child, until I told my family we had to go in the “Food” room and saw the replica of her kitchen. It was a close call.
From there we hopped back on the trolley and stayed on to listen and ride for most of the tour.
Under the scalloped canopy of this hotel was where President Ronald Regan was shot. The topper was my mom said we almost stayed there.
We saw the National Cathedral, that has – not a “hundred year plan” – but a “thousand year plan,” because they make all their own resources. The trees on the property produce any of the wood they might need. And they own the stone quarry all their stone architecture is made from.
We drove through the beautiful Georgetown and were greatly tempted to go to DC Cupcakes. Then we remembered Carlo’s, and the French bakery, and all the weird complimentary breakfast pastries we’ve gotten on the trip and decided against it. Mark this day in history.
We were also on a time constraint and could only choose to do things we really wanted to do.
We got off at the White House, not that you can exactly go inside. I think there’s a two week reservation period in advance type deal you have to go through. So we just took pictures outside. Along with the hundred or so other creepers. Imagine if people were doing this to your house at all-hours.
I did it. But I still recognize it’s weird.
I also saw the First Squirrel.
By this time we were beyond hungry and tired, and got back on the trolley.
The trolley driver soon started describing the Union Train Station, with it’s this-many restaurants and eateries, and this-many little shops to browse.
I believe that it was out of desperation that we got out. I also believe it was a mistake. It was more of a mall than a train station, but none of the eateries were peaking our interest. We stopped in a shop, but the clerk ignored us, so we left.
We then stood outside on the curb waiting for our trolley for so long, we started to wonder if it had abandoned us, especially when we saw one turn in the opposite direction from the station.
Eventually we were picked up and shown around the Capitol.
The traffic was so thick, we didn’t have time for anything else. The trolleys were taking us to our final stops, but by then, our only concern was on food.
That morning when we had gotten off the train, there was a row of colorful food trucks, parked on the side of road, all selling different kinds of foods. Now there was none.
During our routes, these girls were passing out fliers for a food place called PotBellys, but the flier didn’t list prices, so we decided that Subway was a better alternative. It was listed on our tourist map.
We asked five different people where it was. The first girl said the map was totally messed up and gave us the real way to get to it. We walked aimlessly and found nothing. A girl on the street tapped her lips and looked right and left while she thought, before finally concluding that she has no idea where Subway is. The security guard in the luggage store told me that the clerk could help me. The clerk at the luggage store laughed sheepishly and admitted she doesn’t live here. I wanted to shake her and yell “you WORK here!” Finally, the guy at Starbucks looked confused and told us that the only Subway he knew of was on Seventh, but that’s closed now.
We ended up at PotBellys.
It’s almost exactly like a Subway, it turns out. We got sandwiches and soups. It was just hard to communicate with the sandwich makers and you can’t see over the counter to watch them make your sandwich, like at Subway. I never realized how much I enjoyed that.
Considering how hungry we were, it was delicious. I really liked the Garden Vegetable soup. I could ask for seconds.
We road the train home, not in rush hour this time, got to the mall, and drowned our sorrows in Haagan Dazs Ice cream.
That made everything better.