Thursday, March 17, 2011

Excellence in D.C. Day 1

We left our teeny airport at 7ish on Friday evening for a layover at LA. Finally, left LA at 10:30ish. Arrived in Virginia at 6ish on Saturday morning. We hit the ground running, literally. My friend, Mark, picked us up from the airport. He was kind enough to let us freshen up at his hotel room. 

By 9:30ish, we were heading toward the metro station. Mark taught me that Virginia most likely has the most personalized license plates. I contemplated taking photos of all of them, but there were too many! We passed the kiss and ride and made our way into the metro station. I love taking the metro whenever I'm in a large city (minus Chicago). I love waiting for the metro, feeling it zip by, and trying to get my metro legs. The D.C. metro is surprisingly clean and warm. Not sweaty gym locker room warm but toasty car warm. 

We took the metro up to Ben's Chili Bowl, arrived around 10:30ish. It's so us to go and eat as soon as we land. We're foodies like that. In case you're wondering why this spot, Ben's Chili Bowl has been featured on Anthony Bourdain's No Reservations and Man v. Food. We're all big fans of both shows. (Obama has also visited this D.C. institution.) We each had a half-smoked chili dog and shared a plate of chili smothered fries. Delish! Then, we headed to the National Mall while Mark went to meet Samantha Brown at the Travel Expo.

Most of our afternoon was spent at the Smithsonian National Museum of American History. It's huge! It houses so many amazing artifacts. We saw the hat that Abraham Lincoln wore that fateful night at Ford's Theater. It even had the teacup that he drank out of before he left for the theater. We also saw the flag that inspired the Star Spangled Banner. It's breathtaking at 30 feet x 34 feet. It also had a really fascinating war exhibit. Did you know that missionaries, teachers, and Western government employees were detained in internment camps in Japan during WWII?

Afterward, we wandered past the Washington monument to the White House. Once we arrived at the White House, we could only see the back of it. Disappointing, no? We wobbled back to Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History to check out the rotating exhibits. There was a fabulous CSI-esque colonial exhibit called Written in Bone: Forensic Files of 17th Century Chesapeake. We learned how different diseases affect our bones. For instance, syphilis can cause moth-eaten like scars to occur on a skull. Gross but interesting. 

We called it an early night and went back to Virginia for dinner at a delicious Burmese restaurant.

No comments: