I’m pretty tired tonight so to change it up, I’m gonna do this entry in point form:
- We started off with coffee at the Starbucks near our hotel, then took the Metro toward the White House. It was another great day weather-wise, at around 27 degrees Celsius.
- The White House Visitor Center was mostly unimpressive, especially when compared with the Visitor Center at the Capitol. We did find the short video they were looping informative, however.
- About a minute or so after leaving the Visitor Center, we crossed 15th Street at E Street, and with sirens coming closer noticed that many people had stopped to look. We figured it was an emergency vehicle of some kind.
- We realized fairly quickly that something bigger was happening. Half a dozen police motorcycles had appeared, with a few cars behind them and four or five tour buses behind the cars. Policeman started ensuring all pedestrians were a few feet back from the roads.
- Then, from a different direction, more police motorcycles drove past, turning off 15th Street west onto E Street. More vehicles with lights went by, then we saw Cadillac One and a number of other presidential vehicles drive past. We got to see President Obama’s motorcade!
- After the cars had passed we walked toward the White House, but couldn’t get very close. We took a picture as close as we could get.
- Our next stop was the Museum of Natural History. We tried to go through relatively quickly, but still spent quite a bit of time looking at everything!
- We then took the Metro to Union Station, where we did some shopping and exploring. Sharon bought some really nice clothes, and we stopped for cookies and an iced coffee at Au Bon Pain.
- With about two hours to kill before a walking tour, we decided to stop at the Air & Space Museum (which we later learned is the busiest of the Smithsonian museums). We didn’t have much time there before it closed, so we zipped through it.
- After the museum closed, we sat outside for a bit, then made our way to the meeting point for a free walking tour.
- Though the tour covered all the places we had already seen (Washington Monument, war memorials, etc.) it was worthwhile for all of the stuff we learned. Lots of history, and some great trivia too! For instance, we learned the Secret Service codenames for the First Family: Barack is Renegade, Michelle is Renaissance, Malia is Radiance, and Sasha is Rosebud.
- The tour ended at the Lincoln Memorial, where we remained until sunset. We wanted to see the Korea War Veterans Memorial and the Lincoln Memorial at night, and neither disappointed. We also got some great views of the illuminated Washington Monument and the Capitol.
- We walked back across the bridge toward Georgetown, but didn’t quite get that far. Instead, we picked up some dinner from Safeway at Watergate, and came back to the hotel.
- I think I should have brought or bought better shoes – all the walking has made my feet incredibly sore! Sharon seems to be doing a bit better, but we’re both fairly exhausted this evening!
Tomorrow we’re going to do some shopping in Georgetown, among other things!