Since I turned a quarter of a century this year, I decided to do something different. Therefore, the Saturday after my birthday I hoped onto a train and headed to Washington, D.C. for the day.
I’d been to Washington, D.C. 12 years ago on the summer before my 7th grade year. While I remember a lot about that trip, I know I did not appreciate it enough. Washington, D.C. is such an inspiring and powerful city. It was so wonderful to be in a city where the unity of our great nation is ever present. I strongly recommend that everyone visit at least once in their lifetime.
Unfortunately, the only train that would get me to Washington, D.C. in time for my White House tour left NYC at 3:00 a.m. I took a quick nap and headed to the train station. It was a 4 hour trip, and was quite relaxing. I’ve come to really like riding the train, and also really appreciate public transportation. They only time I ever miss having a car is when I grocery shop (which is an entirely different story that I will save for later).
Once I arrived I set out to the streets of D.C. with my first stop being to get coffee at Starbucks… of course. After my rejuvenating cup of joe, I headed over to the Washington Monument. Unfortunately, the monument itself was closed due to some earthquake damage it received a few months ago, but thankfully I could still walk up to it and see the obelisk pierce the sky.
Next up was my White House tour. This was definitely the highlight of my trip. I can’t even explain how historically significant it felt to be standing inside the White House, on the same floors 44 presidents have stood, standing in what was once their home. Just imagining all of the historical leaders who walked the same halls. It was powerful.
After the White House, I decided to walk along the National Mall towards the Lincoln Memorial. The mall is pretty long, and the humidity was about 80% that day, so when I finally got there, I wasn’t looking to glamorous… and then I saw the stairs. There are about a million stairs to get up to the Lincoln Memorial, so I decided to take a break and stand by the Reflecting Pool that had recently reopened. Again I had an overwhelming feeling of patriotism standing is such a historical location.
The Lincoln Memorial was breathtaking. Such an amazing leader.
On my way back through the mall headed towards the Capitol for my afternoon tour, I stopped at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial.
My tour in the Capitol was guided unlike my earlier White House tour. I really enjoyed going from room to room and hearing the history of this significant building. I learned something new (well I learned a lot) while I was there. Apparently the dome of the Capitol building was completed during the Civil War. Even though the country was at war with itself, Lincoln wanted to dome to be completed to signify that the Union would survive (like I said, such a great leader).
To close out my trip I went to the National Gallery of Art and was so sad that I only had an hour to tour the museum. This museum houses some amazing sculptures by Degas and Rodin, as well as many other well known artists. It was the perfect way to end an exciting yet very tiring day.
I will need it return to Washington, D.C. soon to further explore all of the richness this city has to offer. Thankfully it’s just a train ride away!