Travel Diary
 
October 30, 2002
Washington, DC


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Our nation's capital is an amazing place to spend a few days when it's raining. Not terribly scenic, but certainly plenty of things to see inside.

The U.S. Capitol building

We started at the National Botanic Gardens Conservatory. It was right across the street from the Capitol building.

Mary in front of the National Botanical Garden

Pete got a chance to take more macro photos of the plants. They had a whole room full of orchids that was a quite a sight and smell!

Strange plant

Orchid

Orchid

We took a tour at the Bureau of Printing and Engraving. They don't allow photos on their tour, but we got to see a few printing presses where they were making $1 and $20 notes. One amusing part of the tour was the collection of signs that were on the various printing, cutting and sorting machines and usually near large stacks of currency. They said things like "The Buck Starts Here" and "Have you ever been so close, and yet so far?", "Imagine how I feel, I printed my lifetime salary today!"

The Smithsonian Institution has 16 museums in and around Washington D.C. We chose the National Museum of American History. It is a huge building that comprised three floors of exhibits. Here are some of the things we saw that we enjoyed:
  • Julia Child's kitchen. It was donated by Julia Child and re-built inside the museum with her appliances, pots and pans, etc.
  • The original Star Spangled Banner. It's the actual flag that our national anthem was written about. The museum is working on a preservation project to conserve this amazing original piece of our history.
  • The Hall of the First Ladies. This exhibit has the original gowns worn by First Ladies at the Presidential inaugurations as well as exhibits that illustrated the changing role our country's First Ladies have had.
Check their web site for some great virtual exhibits and pictures of the things we got to see.

The other great part about our trip to Washington D.C. is that our campground has a service from LinkSpot where we were able to get wireless broadband internet from our house. We hope they do well and get coverage in lots of campgrounds soon!

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