Monday, June 29, 2015

D.C. - Day 1

I have wanted to visit Washington, D.C. ever since eighth grade. I really wanted to go on the trip that was offered, but it just wasn't in the cards. So here I am, twenty-some years later - finally standing in our nation's capitol. (Yes...I technically spent three hours on a layover at Reagan International Airport once, but since I didn't leave the gate, I don't know that it really counts.)

Being able to visit with our friends in Maryland AND get to see D.C. as a family really is a dream come true. Our feet are tired, and our minds are spinning, but it was an incredible day. (Didn't help that our subway had a delay over an hour and it was way too late when we got back to the house...but it's all part of the adventure we call family vacation.)

It started with a ride on the subway to Union Station.

 We continued on the Duck Boat tour.

South lawn of the White House

Capitol under construction
We followed the tour with a trip to Arlington National Cemetery, where we visited the graves of the Kennedy family and watched the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers. As we were leaving, we heard the strains of the Navy Hymn played by a brass band and stumbled upon a full military funeral. It was a beautifully somber moment, and one we're glad we were able to witness (from a distance.)

Honor guard and band
From Arlington, we visited the Lincoln Memorial and the Vietnam Wall. It's sobering to see how many names are engraved, and knowing that by the grace of God, our own fathers' names are not there. I was able to find the name of one of my dad's friends.

While hoofing it through D.C. and trying to find a subway station that was open to get us back to the house, we saw increased security shortly before the wailing of the motorcycle sirens, followed by 5 black SUVs driving quite quickly and evasively through the streets. If it wasn't a Presidential motorcade, it was an awfully convincing practice run.

A final picture of our sweaty family - tired, but rolled with the punches all day long. Can't wait to share about Day 2.

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