Sunday, June 28, 2009

D.C. - Day 2

We started out our day on Thursday bright and early. We had our tour for the White House scheduled at 8:00am, so we got up early to make sure that we caught our shuttle and metro and still had plenty of time to walk to the White House. Unfortunately the clouds were pretty gray and we knew that the chance of rain was going to be great.

As soon as we left the metro station, it started raining. Since we were visiting the White House, we were told exactly what we were not allowed to bring (which is pretty much everything), so we figured that an umbrella would be on that list as well. Once we got to the White House and started seeing some of the Congressmen, we overheard that an umbrella is actually one of the few things that they will allow you to bring. So, if any of you ever tour the White House, you can bring your umbrella! They do not wish for you to stand out in the rain and get soaked. :) (I don't really know what they make you do with those umbrellas, but you can have them while outside.)

We met up with our congressman's wife and she got us started on our tour. We LOVED the White House tour. It was a self guided tour and we really soaked it all up. We got to see a lot of pictures of former presidents, some of the place settings of different presidents, the Library, the East Room, the Green, Blue and Red rooms and the State Dining room. We also saw and walked through part of the Cross Hall.

The East Room was truly magnificent. The glass chandeliers date back to 1902 and the picture of George Washington, that Dolley Madison saved from the White House when the British burned it, hangs on the wall in the East Room. We spoke with the secret serviceman that was in that room and he said that President Obama had just hosted some people in that room the day before. From the East Room, we saw the Cross Hall with the red carpet that you often see the President walking down when he is addressing an audience. The East Room is also the room that Abigail Adams used to hang the family wash while the White House was still being completed.

The Green, Blue and Red rooms were really beautiful and the State Dining room was really pretty. We were able to ask a lot of questions and learned so much about each of these rooms. We finished up our tour and got ready for our tour of the Capitol.

We went into the Library of Congress and grabbed a quick bite of lunch downstairs in one of the cafeterias. By the time that we left the Library of Congress and headed over to get ready for our tour, it started pouring down rain again. We were beyond soaked when we got up to the Congressman's office and introduced ourselves to his staff and interns.

Since we had our tour lined up through our congressman's office, we were given the tour of the Capitol with a few of his interns. They were awesome and shared so much with us! We posed for a quick picture on the Capitol steps with the Congressman and then headed inside to watch the representatives vote. On the day that we were visiting, they had 27 votes! We got to sit in the house chamber (you know, the one that you see on CSPAN) and watch all of the congressmen/women vote. The room was really pretty and we were able to talk with our congressman in between his votes. We heard so many interesting stories about the Capitol. It was so beautiful and we really enjoyed our time there. The history that is in the Capitol building is so fascinating. I would love to tour it again, just to hear all of the stories again.

On the steps of the Capitol with our Congressman

The Capitol

The center of Washington, D.C.

The artwork at the top of the Rotunda

The Rotunda
The Rotunda is so tall, that they said that the Statue of Liberty could fit inside of it.

The old hall of the House of Representatives

After touring the Capitol, we walked down "The Mall" and visited the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. At the Natural History museum we saw the Hope Diamond and some dinosaur bones with a bunch of other things. The museum was heavily influenced by the concept of evolution, so we weren't really that interested in it. We spent a couple of hours looking around before we headed out to eat dinner.

The hardest and probably the most frustrating part of our trip was finding a place to eat dinner. There were plenty of different types of food around, but I guess that our cravings were all "Southern". We searched long and hard for each of our meals. We finally finished out our day on Thursday by eating a late dinner at Chili's. We ending up going down to Crystal City to find it and after getting off of the metro, we walked FOREVER until we found Chili's. To say that we were excited would be a HUGE understatement! It took us a long time to make it back to our hotel. I think that we walked off every bite of our dinner.



I am loving hearing about your trip so far and seeing the pictures. Can't wait to see the rest! :) It looks like ya'll have a great time.

The HoneaBees said...

Awesome pictures! I can't wait to see the rest! So funny about your food choices! I always like to go somewhere we couldn't go at home, but J likes the same 'safe' stuff.

brooke said...

I love your pictures, Sunny. Sounds like a great trip. I would love to go again sometime and really just take my time looking at things. It's so hard to see everything you want to see in one trip. I'm so glad ya'll had a good time!

-Lane said...

Isn't Aderholt a great guy? We loved our time with him, and we're glad you had a good experience. We got to go in his office, and we hung out with him for about an hour. He went out of his way to make our experience grand. His secretary (who was an intern, so I'm sure you didn't have the same one) did a tremendous job on the tour.