Friday, February 6, 2009

long awaited D.C. report

We had a great time in D.C.! 1) It was so nice to spend some time with our friends Tyler and Emily for a few days. We haven't seen them in a while! 2) We were able to squeeze in 2 other visits to friends while we were there, the Sandersons and Freshmans. Flying didn't agree with me on the way there and I was very nauseous when we got our rental car and started the 2.5 hour drive to stay with Jake and Maggie in Charlottsville, VA. I got so nauseous that we got a hotel and left the next morning. We had been driving for almost an hour and a half, but had only made it 20 miles. DC is confusing. We met Jake and Maggie Saturday around lunch and had sandwiches at their awesome house. We saw a vineyard/winery that afternoon. I don't remember the name, but it was really cool. We saw the remains of the house Thomas Jefferson designed for the vineyard owner back in the day. It was a cool place to visit. We were able to do some other sightseeing in downtown Charlottsville, VA and saw the University of Virginia. It is huge! It spans multiple blocks and has HUGE buildings! It was quite a sight. We left the next morning, (Sunday,) and met Carl's photo-mentors, the Sandersons to do a family session for them. We had dinner with them at this cool Diner and then returned our car back in DC to stay with Tyler and Emily. We found out that our rental car return was a block from Emily's apartment. We laughed about it. Emily lives just 3 miles from the monuments and capitol. We relaxed for a little bit Sunday night and then went and saw the monuments at night. They said that was the best time to see them and they were right. Everything was all lit up and there were very few other people there. Seeing them in the day just isn't the same. I was looking forward to the Lincoln memorial the most but it was blocked off and had lots of scaffolding and a stage set up from a concert that afternoon. I was a little disappointed. We also saw the WWII memorial and Vietnam memorial as well as the White House that night. Lots of walking! The White House lights were off when we got there. Apparently at 11pm, they "close" for the night. We got there at 11:05. Bummer!

Monday we walked around Georgetown (which is a yuppie neighborhood just outside DC.) Carl is shooting Emily and Tyler's wedding in June. He shot their engagement pictures that afternoon while we walked around. You can see them here. We were able to make it to the Capitol that night. It's HUGE! We relaxed that night and got to bed early to be up at 5am. We left at 5:45am for the mall area. We were able to take the Metro (underground train) to just blocks from the mall. We think so many people thought the train would be packed that they walked. We tried it and there were very few people! We were smooshed between who knows how many people. A water main broke on the street we were walking down so police and fire crews were trying to go against the flow of thousands of people. Needless to say it got very cozy and it was the only point in the day I got very nervous and concerned I would be separated from our friends and get lost in the crowd. Luckily we got out fast and were on the mall before we knew it. We were behind the 3rd jumbo-tron, about 3/4 mile from the Capitol steps. We were very happy with our spot and were surprised we were that close. Considering the crowd spread over 2 miles, we were doing well! We were surrounded by lots of great people. We spent about 6 hours standing. We talked and laughed and had a great time with our new friends. I was standing next to a woman who had been in a segregated school through the 5th grade. It was very neat to be standing next to someone who was able to see a circle completed in history. The man to my right was from Australia and kept asking when we were going to sing the National Anthem. They played several songs over the system before the ceremony started. This Land is Your Land was my favorite. It was very surreal to be with almost 2 million people singing the same song. It also was very cool to say the Lords Prayer with everyone at the close of the ceremony. It gave me chills! There were some frustrating when this lady stole my spot. She said, "excuse me" like she was trying to pass me. And then she just stood where I was standing. Then I couldn't see. Thanks a lot lady. I went back and forth between seeing about 1/6th of the jumbo-tron to seeing 1/3rd. We had to walk the 3 miles back to Emily's apartment. It was a very tiring walk after standing for nearly 7 hours. We finally made it, grabbed lunch, and then lounged the rest of the day in the apartment. We watched the parade and fell asleep. Emily and Tyler had to work the next day so Carl and I were able to sleep in, relax, and take our time packing for the airport. We went to the airport 3 hours early because we saw on the news that lines were very long and people were missing their flights. We made it to the gate with about 2 hours to spare. We made it home late that night and slept extremely well (as you can imagine.) It was quite a whirlwind trip! We are looking forward to going back. There was so much more we didn't get to see (other monuments, the Smithsonian, the American history museum, Arlington cemetery, etc.)

Carl took pictures of the day and you can see them here

Shew! I think that catches you up on how it was! It's hard to believe it's been just over 2 weeks since we were there. Since being home, our friends have had baby showers, actual babies and I've been tracking down my insurance mess. Good news! Babies are all well and I have insurance again! Hip Hip!

It's nice to be back home and into a routine again. Don't worry, we leave in just 3 weeks for 5 days in California! (Strictly photography business trip...and the beach.) :)

Hopefully a job is in there too! I meet with a manager from Starbucks on Monday. Hip Hip again!


live compassionately said...

1)I'm so glad you got to go to D.C. and that you guys had a great time.

2)Hooray for insurance and babies!

3)Hooray for a potential job at Starbuck's! :)

mj said...

that's awesome that you had your own personal DC guides. i'd have never thought to meander around the monuments at nighttime, but it sounds like a neat perspective!

i just think it's amazing that you actually got to be there for the inauguration.

two miscellaneous comments:
1) boo to the lady that stole your spot!
2) i can't believe you didn't mention aretha's hat!!

Mags said...

Awesome re-cap and I think the last bit is the best!!!!!