Monday, March 28, 2011

Our US trip, part II: Washington DC

I doubt this has happened before, but I figured I might just cram one more blog post in today! I still have so much to tell about our trip, and I can't begin to tell you how much fun we've had. It has been one of the best trips in our lives, probably just as nice as our honeymoon to Santorini, Greece three years ago!

Ok, when I left you yesterday we had just arrived in Arlington, just outside of DC. Me and Thomas arrived on Friday evening, and on Saturday morning the lovely Sarah arrived at about nine o'clock. I just can't describe the feeling I had when I opened the hotel room door and saw her for the first time! LIVE! It was just so cool! We've been skyping together for about a year and a half, and it was just amazing to see her live! She is so sweet and nice and pretty!

Anyway, we had a quick breakfast and headed off inte the center of DC, to go see the Smithsonian museums and the Mall. We started with a quick photo session in the Mall:

And then headed to the Native American Museum (which we've now named the Naked American Museum - that's what Thomas heard when we were first talking about it...), which was a very nice museum! It's a living history museum, so it kind of focuses more on the living native American tribes of today, which was really nice. The restaurant was also completely awesome, since you could get lots of Native American foods from different parts of the country. 

After this we headed to the American History Museum (and joked about how small it would be, since the US has a pretty short history compared to Europe ;), which turned out to be reallu fun! We aren't that well versed in american history, to tell you the truth, so it was very interesting. A lot of the later history focuses a lot on the different wars that the US has taken part in during the 20th century, and that part of history I guess we knew most about. One funny detail is that in the US, the second world war started in 1941. In Europe I've only seen the starting year as 1939, as that was when Germany invaded Poland. But I guess to most US citizens, the war started with the bombing of Pearl Harbour.

After this not so short museum, we sort of had a museum overload, so we went outside to look at all the memorials and the White house. We started with the white house, and I was a bit disappointed that you couldn't get very close at all. We had to use the zoom function on the camera to get a good photo! In Sweden there are actual tours of parts of the royal castle where our royal family actually live, so this kind of security is still a little strange to me (and let's not even discuss airport security in the US...).

Anyway, we walked on and had a look at the WWII memorial, the Vietnam Memorial (which was completely mind-boggling, with all the names of the soldiers who died on a loooong wall), and finally to the Lincoln Memorial (I kept expecting to see a great big ape on the chair, as in Planet of the Apes!). We're now referring to this memorial as "the dude in the chair" as we at first couldn't remember which president was actually sitting on the chair (I told you we're not that in to american history!).

After walking past the Washington Monument on our way back to the car we were completely beat, so we went back to the hotel to grab some dinner. We ended up at a pub called Capitol City Brewing company, and I got the largest order of ribs I've ever seen!

Everything is bigger in the US! I didn't manage to finish more than a third, I think, but we took the rest of it with us to have a snack later. The evening ended in the hotel hot-tub, which felt absolutely amazing after all that museum walking!

On Sunday morning we headed back to DC for the Natural History Museum, and this time we made it in. Both me and Thomas are sort of animal enthusiasts, so this was a real treat. I think we spent about two hours here before it got too crowded, and then we left to head on down to Clifton Forge (where Sarah and Chris lives). 

The part about our stay in Clifton Forge and Douthat State Park will be the last installment in this trilogy of vacation stories! I'll be back another day (I don't want to promise that it'll be tomorrow, in case I'm too tired as we're still pretty jet-lagged) to tell you about our compltetely awesome stay with Chris and Sarah! Oh, and there will be some yarn in that post too :)

/ Jenny


Erin Wallace said...

Since it's American History the date of our engagement in the war is what we refer to. If it were world history the date would be the actual very beginning of the war. And yes, food portions are huge in the US which is why we are so much, larger than the rest of the world!

Gracey is not my name.... said...

I'm surprised you couldn't get into the White House..there are tours, unless something is going Erin said, yes the war started in 1939, but US involvement started in 1941. I love the Nat. American museum, especially the building. It's cool looking. I spent several days in DC a couple of years ago...

Sarah {The Student Knitter} said...

in my own defense, I'm not American either. So "dude in the chair" was about all I could come up with. hehe :)

Love seeing the pics!

Virginia said...

YAY! That's awesome. Although you're weirdly on, like, the tour of me. NYC is where I am now, I was born in Washington DC, and then you went to Southwest VA, where I lived for nearly a decade (and where I got married and had a kid). The only thing you missed was Oregon and Washington, where I lived for college.