We began the day by heading to the Holocaust Museum to see about tickets, but the line was way too long, so we decided to put that off until tomorrow.
We sent the girls back to the Natural History Museum, because they felt they didn’t get enough time there yesterday, while we meandered through the Freer and Sackler Galleries. I was delighted to see all the Buddhas and Bodhisattva, but was deeply disappointed that the gift shop didn’t have ANY reproductions to purchase (I really want the Bodhisattva of Compassion; I’m going to go online to see if the Smithsonian website has it).
From there, we picked up the girls and headed to Teaism to have lunch. It was a place unlike we’ve ever been to, and it had Sweet Pea-friendly food (she’s a veggiesaurus). It was quite yummy, though ridiculously crowded at exactly lunchtime – if we were smarter (which we clearly weren’t), we’d have avoided the rush.
After that, we found our way through the Naval Memorial (something I wasn’t expecting to see; we happened upon it as we were walking back to the Mall) and then spent a little time at the Old Post Office. I got some ice cream (because today is an ‘off the books’ day – I don’t have the first idea how to log the bento box I had for lunch) and then we took the Tower Tour. If you’ve never done it, do; it’s free, and the view from the top of the Tower is stunning.
Once we got back to ground level, we made our way to the American History Museum (which, so far, is my favorite). We set the girls off to explore on their own while we headed to the First Ladies and Presidents exhibit. While I’m not one for fashion, I really do love the inaugural gowns, especially the really old ones.
We also saw (again) the Emancipation Proclamation and March on Washington exhibits (which I love), and the American Story exhibit, which is where Dorothy’s ruby slippers and Archie Bunker’s chair reside. I distinctly remember there being an exhibit of all the artifacts left at the Vietnam wall, but I couldn’t find it. Perhaps it’s part of the section of the museum that’s closed for renovations; it opens again in 2015.
After that, we headed back to the hotel to pick up the car and make our way to our apartment. We’re staying at National Harbor, which is about as upscale a place as I’ve ever been. The point of the complex is that one never leaves – there are shops and restaurants and just about anything anyone would want – but we’re going to be back in DC tomorrow for a self-directed tour of monuments (Jefferson, Lincoln, Vietnam, Korea, Washington (scaffolding and all), and just about any others we can find) and a trip through the Holocaust Museum if we can get tickets. A friend wen to the Newseum today and said it was fantastic; we’ll likely go there if we can’t get into the USHMM.
And now? I’m exhausted. I’m going to bed. More tomorrow!