Back on June 5th, we had the great pleasure of visiting our buddy Stu in Washington D.C. We flew Midwest (which rocks for three important reasons: every seat is huge, they don't charge to check your luggage and they give everyone free chocolate chip cookies. I don't need much else from my airline. A pilot, maybe.).
We arrived at Stu's house on Thursday night, in time for a good old-fashioned "porch" party. Stu's crazy roommate was already sitting on the front porch waiting for us - four beers in? Soon, we were joined by his fun (friendly!) neighbors to drink mojitos and smoke a turkish hookah. We quickly became insanely jealous of Stu's out-going neighbors. Ours won't even wave back when we drive down the road. Nice.
We left the house every morning, armed with Gatorade and sunblock. It was a cool 1,000 degrees every day and we (evidently) picked the hottest weekend in D.C. history. (Not really...people just kept telling us how beautiful it was the day before we arrived.) And the fountains in D.C. are not like the ones in Kansas City. You won't see kids in their swimsuits, running around and playing games - or possibly bathing.
Indeed, I am:
There's a pretty big chunk of the trip missing here because this is when I dropped my camera on the sidewalk, rendering it useless. I had to buy some cheap Kodak disposable cameras at a vendor cart (after a good hour of pouting like a 3-year old). I still haven't taken them in to get developed (still pouting). Instead, I found these photos - which are better than anything my stupid disposable cameras could have taken.
The Washington Monument:
The National World War II Memorial (which you're not allowed to touch or drink or run through naked...no matter how hot it is outside.):
The Lincoln Memorial:
If you ever find yourself walking around D.C. on a really hot day, you'll probably notice how many monuments are not shaded by tall buildings. That's because D.C. has a height restriction on buildings. Nothing can be taller than the Washington Monument. Oh, and most monuments are built in clearings...not forests.
The Vietnam Memorial:
The Korean War Memorial:
FDR Memorial Park (which is really cool, but it felt a lot like a zoo where bears might live. There were huge rock walls with natural waterfalls and the whole thing is like an "experience" where you turn a corner and there's another quote or a statue. I just kept waiting for the bears...)
(again, with the water you can't touch...)
The Jefferson Memorial (where I literally smooshed my face against the cool marble in an attempt to lower my body temperature. I think I even fell asleep for a few minutes. That dome is amazing. It's about 20 degrees cooler than everywhere else in D.C. because of the cross-wind. Great design. Great building. Sort of a pain to get to. Totally worth it, once you do!)
After the monuments, we took a cab to Georgetown. We went directly to a bar that boasted the largest selection of beer in the world. (I think I just made that up) We sampled several "summer brews" and I quickly landed on Corona.
That night, Stu's neighbors (again...so friendly!) invited us over for a cook-out. In the mid-west, a cook-out involves potato salad, burgers and hot dogs. These people made fajitas! And carne asada! And fresh quacamole! And the most amazing margaritas I've ever had! (95% alcohol) It completely changed my expectations of a "cook-out" forever.
The next day was even hotter. Stu made us a hearty breakfast (which he did EVERY morning, I should mention) and we headed off for more sight-seeing. Also, Stu let me borrow his camera (I promised to be SUPER careful!):
The Library of Congress:
The Supreme Court:
The Mall (which is not a shopping mall, as Ryan previously anticipated):
(we didn't go in, I just thought it was pretty.)
The Air and Space Museum (where Ryan was accused of smuggling vodka in his Gatorade bottle. "I've seen it before" was the guard's response. Apparently, he can handle his liquor when it's 110 degrees):
(this monkey went to space!)
(we went to the World War 2 exhibit so I could see some pin-up girls, Memphis Belle style. This was about it. It's a family museum.)
That's it for the pictures. I wish I'd taken my camera (well, Stu's camera) to the party we attended that night. It was a birthday party for Stu's roommate, hosted by a guy who can see the Supreme Court from his rooftop deck. It was beautiful.
The entire trip was amazing. Thank you (Stu) for hosting and walking around with us in 1,000 degree heat. Now, you just have to move somewhere else cool so we can come visit you. :) Can I suggest Alaska or Canada or maybe even the North Pole??