When Jeff's mom visits us from California, we always like to add some kind of trip into our time with her. Well, this visit, the big trip was the one I took, with Josiah, David, and Benjamin, to Josiah's last speech and debate tournament for this year; but that one doesn't count because Grandma Fisher (and half of the family) didn't get to come along!
We couldn't figure out a way to get a longer trip into our schedule, but we wanted to do something, so we decided that a day trip to D.C. was the best solution for us, and last Wednesday, we set out for our adventure.
I'm not going to write much about it but, for time's sake, will let the pictures do the talking. A few notes first though...
1. We parked at Vienna and took the Metro into the city, and the kids loved it. :)
2. We didn't plan much of an agenda (or any!), and it was really nice to go along as the wind blew us, so to speak, without a set timetable. :)
3. I didn't take my good camera along, so all these pictures came from either Jeff's or my cellphone. The quality isn't great, but the memories are captured (although I will add that I certainly didn't try to do an exhaustive photo record of the day, so not all the memories are captured this way). :)
We began at the Museum of American History, part of the Smithsonian (and can I just say that I LOVE the fact that the Smithsonian museums are FREE?!)...
Well, two members of the family didn't have to walk. ;-) We dug an old wheelchair out of my dad's basement so Grandma Fisher could zoom around town without wearing out her legs. ;-) She and Benjamin were quite a pair (and in this photo, they both were evidently blinded by the sun). :)
I loved seeing the old hand and the young one together.
I didn't take a picture of this, but a passing group of friendly tourists gave the kids some leftover ice cream sandwiches that no one in their group wanted. The lady who gave us the first one said, "I know you're not supposed to take things from strangers, but would you like this?" They looked friendly enough, so we took them. :)
Then we headed down the mall towards the Lincoln Memorial; and of course, we came across the Reflecting Pool that I had told the kids about. They were pretty disappointed when they first saw it, however, since when you're standing right by it, you can see how dirty and non-reflective it is close-up. They peered into it, expecting to see a pretty good likeness of themselves peering back, but saw a mucky mess instead. But when we got to the top of the Lincoln Memorial stairs and looked out towards the Capitol and saw the Washington Monument reflected in the pool, ah!! THEN they understood why it's called a reflecting pool. :)
Being at the Lincoln Memorial always fills me with awe, as I think it probably does for the vast majority of its visitors. But tonight as I sit here looking at these pictures of my kids, I noticed, for the first time, the man in the background (no, not Abraham Lincoln!), posing for a picture, too. I don't know his story, but I try to imagine what it would be like to stand there as a black man, knowing that the man whose image dominates this space changed the world for blacks in America. I'm guessing it's a powerful moment for those who get to experience this place.
We found the name of the brother of a friend of ours on the Wall.
We walked back to our Metro stop, soaking in all the beauty of a glorious day as we went.
As we passed the White House, we paused for a picture...
...the kids with their hats that they got as souvenirs.