Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

Mark Twain

Friday, November 7, 2014

A Week in D.C.

Sunday October 26-We got up and hooked up to hit the road. We got a pretty early start, didn't have to worry about rush hour. That's one good thing about traveling on Sunday. The traffic was light until about 25 miles away from our destination. That's when things started to get interesting. I remember this traffic now from previous trips out east. I don't remember the merge lanes or lack of them. If you are coming on there is a yield sign and not much road to get on to the interstate. We were very careful to make it to Cherry Hill Campground, then we parked our rig and got out to walk around and find our spot. It felt good to get out and walk around, but the weather was cold and windy so we didn't walk around to much. We decided on site #414. It was a back in spot and was pretty easy to get in to. The sites are fairly close together. We have 50 amp service with water and sewer on site. They also offer free cable and Internet. The Internet was horrible so we just used our own hot spot. There was an awesome custom 5th wheel right next to us. It was a New Horizon and it was large and pretty. Jeff just kept staring at it. When our neighbor came out she was very friendly and was living in it alone. She invited us over to look inside. Oh my my it was beautiful. She had it custom built from the floor up. It was really nice. She had all the bells and whistles. Really really nice.We headed back home to make plans for the week ahead.

Monday October 27- We decided to head into D.C. We drove the truck to the metro station,(college park) Jeff had purchased us each a metro pass card at the campground, This park is very friendly and helpful in that area. Now we just have to figure out how the metro and bus systems work. We got on the green line and happened to sit by a couple I had seen at the campground. They gave us a map and a quick explanation of how it all was very helpful. We got off at the archives stop, which just happened to be right across from The Archives. We decided to walk up to Fords Theater and take a peek inside. We had to get a ticket to get in but the ticket was free! It was a walk through tour and it was very interesting. The theater itself was awesome. The ticket we got was also good to get in The Peterson House, where they took the president after he was shot. That's where he passed away. I had been to D.C. before but had never seen this. Good news for me, they had a smashed penny machine so I got a few souvenirs. After this we had lunch then walked over toward the White House. First we went to the White House visitor center. We decided  to head back toward the metro station, wanted to beat rush costs more to travel then and of course its busier. We got in our truck and headed back. They charged us $5 to park and the traffic to and from the metro was crazy. Next time we will take the bus from the campground to the metro station. When we got home I got a text message saying they couldn't add the extra gig to my phone like they promised before we bought it. So Jeff had to call and try to get something straightened around. Will it ever end? So far they are taking $ off the monthly bill for a year but still no extra gig.

Tuesday October 28-Its a beauty of a day today, really warm. It got up in the 80's today. We decided to catch the bus from our campground to the metro, less stress for Jeff. It took about the same amount of time, maybe a little longer but you were on the buses schedule. We got on the green line, then switched to the blue line which took us right out to Arlington Cemetery. We checked out the map and planned our route. That's one big place with lots of  walking, hills and steps. First stop was the Kennedy's graves. Just as I remember them, simple but powerful.

Then we walked over to the tomb of the unknown soldier. We arrived as they were changing the guards. That's something everyone needs to see. Wow is all I can say about that. They had some memorials right around there we saw, like The Challenger memorial. The Monitor Memorial, and we also saw the Taft Memorial. Then we hiked over and up to see the Robert E Lee mansion. Took a quick tour through there and headed back to catch the metro back to D.C.

We were hungry so we stopped for lunch at a sports bar. We had a little time before heading home so we went in The National Archives and looked at the Bill of rights. the Constitution and The Declaration of Independence. Those were neat to see but the other stuff wasn't really for me. We headed back on the metro and then the bus. Only had to wait about 20 minutes for our bus. When we got home we were both tired. We had sore feet and tired legs. We decided to take advantage of there hot tub. I must say it felt good. After 2 days of walking the city I think we will take tomorrow off

Wednesday October 29-Today we decided to stay back and get some things taken care of. Jeff asked them at the office and they gave him the OK to wash the rig. He got busy cleaning outside while I got busy inside. I also got all the laundry caught up. They have a huge laundry facility here. We had decided to use there bus system so we filled up the truck to be ready when we leave. While we were out went to the store and IKEA. I love IKEA and its really close. Not like I can get lots but we found some things we could use. Its fun sometimes just looking. Then we went for lunch at a local cafe, Jeff's was good but my sandwich was horrible, I couldn't even eat it...oh well better luck next time. We spent some time with our pups and took them for a nice walk.

Thursday October 30-A big day planned...We are doing the Memorials today. We caught the 9:10 bus for the metro, got off at the archives stop and walked to the Washington Memorial. Jeff went to see if we could get some tickets to go up in it. He did, and we will at 1:30. Took off to make a loop around. First we stopped at the World War II memorial, It was awesome. I've never seen it and they really did a great job honoring all those that served.

Then we walked along the reflection pool and up to the Lincoln Memorial..overwhelming for sure. We had both seen this one before but it never disappoints.

 We looked on the map and noticed there was a memorial for Einstein, so we walked over to get a picture.

Next we went to the Vietnam wall memorial. This one has special meaning to us because Jeff had a brother killed over there. We found his name and then paused and reflected on all the lives that were lost in that war.

 We left here and walked to the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial, It was more like a walk through his Presidency..Jeff really liked him and all he did.

We moved across the street and into the Martin Luther King memorial, again we hadn't seen this either. It was something to see. One thing we noticed with this one and the Roosevelt one is not as many people seem to make it over this far. I'm glad we made the trip it was worth it.

Finally we walked around the walkway along the Potomac River to the Jefferson Memorial, Jeff had never been here and the last time I was here I was 16. It was a beautiful sight. After looking and reading about him we were heading back to the Washington Memorial.

 Before leaving I wanted to get one last picture and I put my purse down. I took my picture and I noticed this friendly squirrel checking out my purse. Next thing I know hes got his nose in my bag seeing if theres anything he might want. I couldn't believe how friendly he was.

Well we continued our way around the walkway and to the base of the Washington Memorial. We arrived around 12:45, so we sat and had a bite to eat. Good thing that squirrel didn't get our lunch out of my bag. Then we went up to get in line for our trip up the monument. We felt really fortunate to get tickets. Jeff was talking to someone who told him you needed to get there really early to secure those tickets. Again the tickets were free but still needed them to ride. It was a perfect day for this, it was blue sky and really clear. The views out the windows were awesome. Jeff had never gone up there, I did that when I was young too. I even walked down the steps then. The park ranger said that they are gonna open the stairs up soon. On the ride down in the elevator they slowed down, dim the lights so you can see the stones that were donated from each state.The last stone donated was from Alaska and is solid jade said to be worth 3 million dollars. I don't know if people know that little bit of information. After we finished here we were both ready to get back. It was a perfect day for what we did, and we walked plenty. Time to go home and rest up. We got on the metro and made our way to our station. Then we had to wait for almost an hour for our bus. When we got home we were exhausted.

Friday October 31-Happy Halloween everyone!! This was to be our last day in D.C. Again we caught the bus then the metro. We scoped out our route so before heading to the Smithsonian we each got us a Starbucks coffee. A good way to start your day. We walked right to the National Museum of American History.....and started our adventure. Jeff headed toward the transportation and technology wing. There we were approached by a man that volunteered and asked us if we would like a tour, Jeff said yes. Oh no I though we are gonna be here all day. Jeff really enjoyed all the extra information he provided us with. I really just liked looking at all the old modes of transportation. After leaving this wing we made our way through lots of others. Both of us enjoyed the section with presidential stuff, Jeff liked the history part of it, me I liked the First Lady's dresses and there dishes. We also got to see the original Star Spangled Banner. Then I spotted the.......Dorothy's slippers from the Wizard of Oz.....that was it for me. So many things to see its hard to remember it all. After looking around we stopped at the gift shop and I made a purchase, I found socks that look just like Dorothy's  shoes. I had to have them. I also got another smashed penny with the museums name on it.

From this museum we walked to the Holocaust Museum, it was very powerful with images that will stay with you for a long time. You hear about these times and think wow, how could this happen. Then you go to a place like this and you realize the magnitude of what really took place there.After it was getting late so we  walked to a sandwich shop and had a late lunch then caught the subway back to College Park and then the bus to the RV park.

Saturday November 1-The weather had taken a turn, its cold and windy with intermittent rain. Decided to hang around and get things done. In between rain I gave Jeff a haircut, Belle a trim and cut my hair. Then I worked on the blog. Had to download my pictures and clean off the camera. We had to load the boats back on the truck. It was a day to just get things done and I feel I did just that. We looked at our route for tomorrow so there wont be any surprises. We are traveling in areas that aren't familiar to us. So we wanted to check and double check. I made supper and got ready for our day tomorrow. We had a great time enjoying our nations capitol and we couldn't have had any better weather. Now on to another new spot.