We walked in the opposite direction
After Libby and I decided we would take a day trip to DC, we went online to check the weather. On the weather site we saw a picture of the Lincoln Memorial. Libby said "I want to see him." Trinity and I had never made it to the Lincoln Memorial, so the three of us figured it was as good a goal as any for a summer day. We got to DC at about 10:30 and our first mission was to find food. I had never taken a day trip to DC before, so maybe that was why I didn't notice the lack of good food available. We took the Metro to Smithsonian aka the Tourist stop. At first, we didn't want to buy food from a street vendor because we were hungry, we wanted to eat something good. But the farther we walked, the tastier the flowers in the flowers beds along the street looked.
The White House is in jail!
We finally backed down and bought hot dogs and pretzels from a guy who ran out of Pepsi. It's no wonder our government can't get their act together. They can't even get a decent meal, for christ sake. Also, the temperature was slowly rising. It would get up to 96 by the end of the day. I found out later that meanwhile, Milwaukee was having what people would describe as "the nicest day of the year." You win again irony!
Our first stop was the White House, where we did what everyone else does. Gape at it through the gate, take pictures of ourselves in front of it, and quietly wonder to one another that it doesn't seem so hard to just jump right over the fence. I look at other people doing the same thing I'm doing, and it looks ridiculous. But it's still really cool.
Trinity is standing on a homeless person
I'll be honest, it gives me chills when I see it up close. At least, it would have gave me chills, if it wasn't 9 degrees. The next time I go to DC, I'll go back to see the White House yet again. I might be protesting something, but I'll still go there, anyway.
After that we headed back toward the Washington Monument. I love the Washington Monument. You can see it from anywhere in the tourist area, so if you get lost or turned around, all you need is a map and eyes to see it, and you'll find your way home. I also love/hate how no matter where you are, it looks HUGE, and it seems like you could take a fantastic picture of yourself in front of it. But when you take the picture, there you are, in the middle of a giant field, with this teeny tiny little stick in the background.
Segways invade the White House!
We climbed to the top of the hill and touched it. What else is there to do with it? I don't want to go inside. Then we climbed back down through a field of goose poop.
By the time we made it to the WWII Memorial, I wanted to dive into the fountain. But I figured if I got arrested, I'd have no one to bail me out. No one we work with who has the ability to fly there has the money for that, and my dad would possibly disown me for disrespecting a national monument. If my dad is going to disown me, I'd rather have it be for something cool and/or progressive, like marrying a girl, not acting like a retard. So we trudged on ahead, past the Reflecting Pool, which is filthy. It was even hotter by this point, but I didn't want to jump into that water.
Me, Trinity, stick
There was even a little baby goose who refused to cross that pool of green waste. The Reflecting Pool is 700,000 miles long, if you didn't know. I'm sure you could actually calculate what it really is, by dividing the temperature by that number and factoring in the unavailability of water in the area. It's all relative! We were starting to wonder if the Lincoln Memorial really existed, or if it was actually a mirage. We made it there, but first took a detour to a little "store" that sold water and other things. I don't know how much the water cost, but it could have been $10 and I'd have been like "I'll take eight." We slammed our waters and climbed up to Abe, and then we sat at the top and took a half hour break, eating chips and crushed up Apple Strudel Pop Tarts.
Libby and Trinity touching the Washington Monument
We headed back past the Korean War Memorial. This time we walked in the shade, at least till we got back towards the Washington Monument, and we drank the rest of the water on the way, which had already boiled in our backpacks. Let me tell you, there's nothing like drinking a bottle of hot water on a hot day. We got back on the train, and we accidentally took the wrong one, but figured it out soon enough to turn back around...we were only in central Virginia after all. We got to the airport and walked from the Metro stop back to our terminal. We could have took the shuttle, but we actually beat another co-worker who also took a day trip, who got off the Metro at the same time we did but took the shuttle, back to the gate. We had already walked 150 miles or something, what was one more? This one was air conditioned!
Before we went through security, we stopped at this little store to buy a Barack Obama shirt.
The Washington Monument, and the sun, which was hotter than shit
All I can ever find is size XL around here, so on my way in I saw a cute green ladies tee there for only $18. While we were shopping, I thought some people were standing behind me, but when I looked up, they were actually giant cardboard cutouts of Obama and McCain. Trinity, Libby and I all started freaking out and yelling "Oh my god, take my picture!" We all took turns standing next to Obama and laughing as we took pictures. There were other people, including airport employees watching us, laughing and pointing as they said "oh cool, they're taking pictures!" It was as though they never saw anyone do it, which I find hard to believe. I mean, you see a giant cardboard cutout, you have your camera, isn't that your initial reaction? There were two other guys there, and they had the same idea, so Libby asked them if they both wanted to get in the picture and she could take it.
scissor gang in DC
They were posing with Obama and McCain. How weird! We asked them to do the same for us. So we all got in the picture, and Libby stood in front of McCain to block him from view. Just as the guy was about to snap the picture, Libby moved her purse to the side, and John McCain fell over on to the floor. We all just started laughing and were going to leave him there, but one of the guys that had our cameras was being responsible and he tried to pick him up and fix it, but McCain's spine fell apart and we couldn't get him to stand anymore. The employee of the store even started laughing, and he dragged McCain off to the side to repair him. Then I took a picture of Trinity and Obama with my phone, and it was awesome because it was a cheap camera phone and the lighting was so horrible that it actually looked real, instead of like cardboard. Trinity was like "It's like he's my dad!"
Summary: It was really hot in DC, but not as hot as it's going to be next year, baby!
Lesson learned: Next time, bring a picnic lunch!