Tuesday, April 27, 2010

A day on the town

One of the wonderful things about being in the military 
and one of the rare benefits of having to move all the time
is getting to be a perpetual tourist.  
I figure we have two to three years to be "tourists in our hometown"
and try as I might, I never get everything done that is on our to do list.
So, this week, while the older two were off doing their various activities
(Key leader camp and a drill competition)
Grant and Julia accompanied me to DC.

The mall was filled with white tents housing the weekend's Earth Day celebration.
We stopped to check out the displays.
All were interesting, but NASA was our favorite.
I imagine that one of the reasons why we never get our entire "to do" list done 
is because we like to revisit some of our favorite spots.  
Grant hadn't been to the African Art museum, so Julia and I enjoyed showing him the sights
and noticing items that we hadn't noticed on our first trip.

I love finding the hidden, quiet places in DC,
like the Moongate Garden just behind the Smithsonian Castle.
I'd never noticed it before.
It made a lovely resting place, someplace that felt like it belonged to us since there was no one else there.
The kids ran back and forth across the little bridges tempting fate, 
 fortunately no one fell in.

Both the African Art museum and the Sackler Art gallery (Asian art) also count as hidden gems.
Located off the mall, behind the castle and the moongate garden,
not as many tourists know about them,
which kind of makes me happy because we're not fighting crowds to see all of the displays.

This was the first time that any of us had been to the Sackler 
and we found plenty of wonderful things that captured our imagination.
Then to top it all off...
we found a secret passage way.
Okay, so it's not really secret, I mean there were signs pointing the way to anyone who cared to look.
But the underground passage from Sackler to the Freer was new to us.
(Somehow, underground passages always seem so much cooler than any other way.)

Julia and I were excited to show Grant the Peacock room.  
I shared with him the story of the room, 
taking the same type of creative license as I did when I wrote about it in an earlier post.
I think Grant loved it as much as we did.


Jess said...

Those collages are just neato. My fav is the Moongate Garden. I need to find a better template so I can make my photos a bit bigger too.

Leslie said...

i am jealous..i wish i was there.

Lindsey said...

This looks like so much fun! I grew up in a small coastal, eclectic town, about once a year or so my mom and I would play tourist for a day. Go visit all the little shops and enjoy the parts of town that most of the "locals" never really went to. It's great memories:-)

T.J. said...

underground passageways are soo the way to go (especially when they don't smell like urine!). You should write a travel book with all these lesser known spots in DC. If ever I'm in that neck of the woods, I will totally visit your recommendations first. Actually, who am I kidding- if I were in the DC area I'd probably be there visiting you!

Sabrina said...

Looks like a wonderful trip! I love DC and would love to share it with my kiddos soon. Safe travels!

Caroline (Frogmum) said...

Just saw you comment about Blogger over on TJ's blog and thought I'd drop you a note :D

You do know that with Blogger you can choose to use the OLD system don't you?! Go to the SETTINGS in you dashboard, and right at the bottom you can 'select post editor' ~ choose old editor and you will be back with life as you once knew it! :D But for what it's worth ~ I prefer the new system because I don't have to keep trying to move pictures around with code, I can just choose where I want them in post :D

Sabrina said...

OK I just realized that you LIVE in DC...travelers/tourists in your own town. My bad. I was too busy checking out all the cool shots you got. :(

Shelle said...

wow did that post take you forever...awesome shots...and you've really covered/uncovered a lot so far...must be so much fun to get out with the kids. love the moongate garden...DC is the best!

alita said...

I have never been to the Moongate Garden. It seems so lovely. I can't wait for our next trip to D.C! I'm sure it will be awhile from now (next on my agenda is New York, yay!)

Great captures, great story... just great.

Jientje said...

You're just like me. I prefer the hidden places and the secret passage ways as well!