DC – Day Two

We did a lot today… walked a lot, saw a lot.

We started out at the National Archives.  We had a timed entry pass, which lets you bypass the line and go right through security.  We saw a replica of the Magna Carta (oh, sorry, it’s out getting a new case), the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution (all four pages), and the Bill of Rights.  We were some of the first ones admitted, and already there was a pretty good crowd around the documents.  Also at the archives is a pretty nice display of the type of records they retain.

Then we got hot dogs on our way to the National Portrait Gallery.  It shares a building with the American Art Museum, and there is quite a bit of nice artwork all over that building.  Saw some great stuff.  Spent a few hours there.  Then we went to Union Station and explored for a while, eating at Johnny Rocket’s.  Then we went back to the Mall and went through the American Natural History Museum.  It was kinda crowded there today!

We actually ran into crowds all day.  The Dalai Lama was speaking at the Capitol this morning, there was a baseball game this evening.  All that along with a nice Saturday made for LOTS of people.

We skimmed the Natural History Museum — Fossils, Hope Diamond, Mummies… we didn’t even go find the woolly mammoths.

From there we headed over toward the Lincoln Memorial.  Along the way we stopped at the World War II Memorial for a while.  It’s very impressive and a nice addition to the Mall.  Then we discovered more ugly, ugly construction.  The Reflecting Pool is drained and is now a muddy, smelly mess while the renovate it.  I’m kinda tired of this sort of thing — Sorry, the Jefferson Memorial is half cordoned off by orange cones and hurricane fence; Sorry, there is currently no visitor center at Old Faithful; Sorry, you just get to see a facsimile of the Magna Carta; Sorry, Saguaro is a lame, ugly waste of a national park.  But I digress.

We walked to the Vietnam Memorial, then the Lincoln Memorial, then the Korean War Memorial, then back to our Metro stop and the hotel.