JetBlue #AYCJ: Day two – Washington, DC
Sonadora lives a bit outside DC but works right in town. Her husband dropped us off near her office, and she pointed the way towards a nearby Barnes and Noble so I could get online to post yesterday’s report and poke around online. That’s exactly what I did… except that I got distracted along the way. I saw the IRS building, the EPA building, the Old Post Office, and the Capitol Building. I spotted a green space, which turned out to be Freedom Plaza. Neat! I’m totally enamoured with DC. I love the serious, stately architecture and all the monuments. It makes me feel very patriotic.
I made my first purchase of the trip at B&N – $2.15 for an orange juice for my breakfast. I had one of my breakfast bars to keep it cheap even though I really wanted a pretty pastry. I messed around on their free WiFi for a bit, and then I moseyed over to my law school friend’s office. I got to walk by the White House, which is always fun. They were actually closing down the fence line right after I took a couple snaps.
After dropping my luggage at my friend’s office, I decided to wander around to see the stuff. I checked out the White House again (other side) and Lafayette Square. Then I checked out the World War II memorial, which I’d visited once before but hadn’t really taken the time to study it. I enjoyed the ducks for a while and then met my lawyer friend for lunch at Potbelly. I looove their loaded baked potato soup, especially with the oyster crackers tossed in. Soup + a bag of salt and vinegar chips = $5.84.
I spent the afternoon at the Smithsonian. First I went to the castle and watched the introductory video to make sure of where I wanted to go. I should’ve known better – of course I decided to go to the National Gallery. I always choose an art museum over anything else. I walked through the sculpture garden, which was fun. Then I had a great time at the National Gallery – I saw a da Vinci (my 3rd in two weeks, a real treat) and plenty of Impressionists. I was bummed to find out that the Matisse room was only open certain hours, but I was absolutely enthralled by the Calder room. And then I found the Degas sculptures – my favorite! I was pushing it too. The Smithsonian closes at 5pm, so I had to pick up my backpack before then – I made it just a few minutes before it closed.
A few odd stories from the Smithsonian: I saw TWO men touch sculptures. One actually tried to lift Rodin’s The Kiss! Insanity. At one point, I was walking right behind some guy into one building, through a one person door. Some other guy wanted to go through the other way and totally barrelled into me when I was already partway through the door. He pushed me so hard that he would’ve gotten through and I would’ve had to wait if I hadn’t been so angry and pushed back. What a freak! I told him I was there first and he needed to wait his turn or use the other door.
I checked out the Capitol for a bit and then strolled back to my friend’s office. Boy, everything totally closes up early in DC. I tried to pick up a prescription refill at CVS and had stopped by about noon. The pharmacist told me to come back after 4pm, but they’d closed up by the time I got back at just after 6pm. What the heck? Anyway, my friend and I took the metro back to his place and then went out to dinner.
We went to CommonWealth, the People’s Gastropub. Funny, huh? They are British inspired and feature beer from the UK and Commonwealths, like Virginia or whatever. It’s a good atmosphere – definitely a pub but clean and trendy. They were out of the shepherds pie (sad!), so I got chicken tikka masala and Smithwicks. It was really good! And the brown bread with raisins to start was good too. My friend enjoyed his bbq pork sliders and duck risotto. I’d definitely go back there and recommend it to friends.
Juice $2.15 + lunch $5.85 + postcard stamps $5.60 = $13.60 spent so far