Friday, March 11, 2016

Catching Happiness Goes to Washington

Last week, my husband and I took a quick trip to the Washington, D.C. area to house/pet sit for his sister. We’ve been to DC a couple of times so we were relaxed about our sightseeing plans, mainly looking forward to a break from the normal, to relaxing and being together without worrying about Scout (this is the first trip we’ve taken since we lost her).

The advantage of going at this time of year is that there are fewer tourists. The disadvantage is that some things are closed and there is not much green or blooming, the famous cherry trees still bare branches against the sky. No matter. It was a change of scenery—and cold! (We are so seldom cold in Florida that we like it!) We even got snow our first night. We woke to an exquisitely silent and lovely world. Crocus peeking through the snow, the lamppost wearing a cap of white, trees jacketed with it. My sister-in-law’s neighbors were amused by the crazy Floridian on her knees taking photos. “Pretty, isn’t it?” one of them remarked as she walked by on her way to the metro.


We managed to pack quite a bit into our four full days. Here are some highlights (click to enlarge photos):

The Hirshhorn Sculpture Garden. My husband dubbed this “Pizza Cutter With a Fresh Hairdo”:


National Gallery of Art, where we only took in some of the Dutch, Flemish, and Impressionist paintings and I strolled though the extensive and fabulous gift shop. Watched this artist adding to her canvas, and heard her tell another guest she’d already spent 30 hours on it, with perhaps 20 more to go:


Rested our feet and got out of the cold by taking the Circulator bus ($1 for two hours of hop on/hop off travel) down to the MLK Memorial, new since we were last in DC. Striking figure emerging from the granite:



Paid our respects at the Lincoln Memorial:


Saw the pandas at the National Zoo:

Bao Bao eating bamboo
Of course, I had to visit Capitol Hill Books, a used book store just across the street from the Eastern Market (see below)—a completely enchanting warren of rooms packed with books from floor to ceiling. I bought five books and easily could have bought more—only stopping because I didn’t have room in my suitcase.


Explored the Eastern Market near Capitol Hill:




Gaped at the Bonsai exhibit at the National Arboretum. The oldest specimen has been “in training” since 1625:



Explored the streets of Old Town Alexandria, though all the museums were closed because it was Monday (oops):

Cobblestones
Thanks to Sally and Ben for giving us the chance for some everyday adventures—we’re happy to pet sit anytime)!

One of our charges, Bunny Hopkins

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4 comments:

Deborah Nolan said...

Dear Kathy what a wonderful trip. Bet it was fun to see some snow. Looks like you seen some great sites. Love the pic of the bunny...was he good for you: :)??

Kathy A. Johnson said...

It was a great trip, Debbie. The snow was a treat for us, as we haven't seen any in years. And Hopkins was very good.

Cheryl Gebhart said...

Sounds like a lovely trip. The last time we were in DC was for the national figure skating championships, which were fantastic, but didn't give us much time for anything else. We decided that the two things we both really wanted to see were the Vietnam War Memorial and the Holocaust Museum, which were both new since we'd been there before. They were both very worth seeing, but they were pretty depressing!

Kathy A. Johnson said...

Cheryl--When you say we, does that mean your husband went to the figure skating championships? How did you manage that? LOL I agree--sometimes what is worth seeing is a tad depressing. I haven't been to the Holocaust memorial for just that reason. (I have been to other Holocaust memorials, including Yad Vashem in Israel.)

There is so much to see and do in DC, we could go back several times and still not see everything. It's nice to feel like we don't HAVE to see everything all at once.