On Saturday, I got up at the ungodly hour of 5am to take my son down to the National Mall in Washington, DC. Granted, I wouldn’t have had to get up quite that early if I wasn’t so ridiculously high-maintenance, but I am and I did. I also wouldn’t have had to get up that early if my friend whom we were meeting down there wasn’t such an early bird, but he is and we did.

2010.09.04 Blue Skies

It was a gorgeous day with blue skies and mild temperatures, so we had decided to monument hop, rather than waste the sunshine inside one of the many museums. This was a good plan on many levels, as it allowed my son to run around like a wild man without disturbing anyone. Plus, he had visited several of the Smithsonian Institute’s more famous museums on school field trips, while he had never been to the any of the monuments. And it had been years since I had visited any of the monuments and memorials myself.

[Sidebar: Do any of my fellow Vox refugees find the process of inserting photos into their posts absolutely frustrating? No, just me? Okay, then…]

The last time I was at the National Mall, the World War II Memorial hadn’t even been built yet. It’s really quite lovely, even if it did take a titch for me to figure out what the double gates marked “Atlantic” and “Pacific” signified. You’ll excuse me for being a bit slow on the uptake as I was slightly preoccupied with making sure my son didn’t launch himself to his doom over the side of the ledge.

Here you can see my friend looking on in horror as my son scrambles over the ledge with about a 12-foot drop on the other side. Awesome!

We moved quickly onto the Lincoln Memorial. I have some pictures to add here, but I’m trying to decide if it’s worth the pain and aggravation. Hmm… Oh, what the hell.

2010.09.04 Honest Abe

The Lincoln Memorial was just as striking as I remembered it. The entire edifice inspires awe, but the statue itself has such a human quality to it. It occurs to me that I don’t even know who the sculptor was, but it’s a magnificent piece. Even surrounded by milling tourists and one, particularly irksome six-year old, I felt myself filled with a sense of calm and wonder. Despite its large size, the statue definitely captures Lincoln, the man.

2010.09.04 On the Steps

This is the photo that I wanted to set as my “Featured Image” but I can’t figure out how to do that. Thanks for nothing, WordPress!

[Sidebar: I love you, WordPress. I just don’t understand you. It’s me, not you. Kisses!]

My friend had to head home, so my son and I ended the day with a quick stop at the Smithsonian Castle. Where we watched a short film narrated by Ben Stiller about the 19 different museums that make up the Smithsonian Institute. We picked out some choices for our next visit, as we were just about done for the day.

We headed down to Northern Virginia for dinner at Chez Manelle, the only (as far as I know) Tunisian restaurant in the DC area. It was wonderful! I already can’t wait to go back. And it was a perfect way to end a pleasant, but rather long day.
2010.09.04 Green Tea w/ Mint and Pine Nuts