Sunday, September 7, 2014

My Trip to Washington, D.C.

Over my summer break, my mom and I took a train to Washington, D.C. On the first night we checked in, unpacked our bags, and met our family friends Ryan and Ryan's mom, Kathy. Ryan and I have been best friends since we were little. Right after we unpacked, the four of us walked to the Lincoln memorial. My mom and I expected us to stay in the hotel and chill because we had only just gotten there, but we also wanted to look at as much monuments as possible in the time that we went.

The Lincoln Memorial

A gigantic statue of Lincoln himself stood before us. It was amazing (and enormous)! After that, we walked over to the Korean War Memorial.

The Beginning of the Korean War Memorial

There were 19 statues of Korean Soldiers. Most of them were army soldiers, but some were air force and navy soldiers. The Vietnam War memorial was next on our list of things to do.

A Tiny Chunk of the Vietnam War Memorial

The Vietnam War Memorial is a long wall that lists all the names of the people who gave their lives fighting for us in the Vietnam War. 

Can you see my reflection?

After that, my mom and I headed back to our hotel while Ryan and Kathy went to an Orioles-Nationals game. I flopped down on my bed and was out-cold in five seconds. The first day was fun, but the next day was going to be even better!

My mom and I woke up at 7:00AM and met Ryan and Kathy at the breakfast buffet. We took the metro to the Washington Monument. At 9:30, Kathy, Ryan and I took the elevator to the top of the monument. My mom was too scared. There were four windows to look out. Here's what I saw out of each one:

 Window 1. The Capitol Building way in the distance

 Window 2. The White House

 Window 3. The Lincoln Memorial

Window 4. The Jefferson Memorial

The Washington Monument was my favorite monument to visit because we were so high up and we could see all the way into Maryland. It was not scary, surprisingly. We took the elevator down and looked up at where we had just been. I couldn't believe we had been up so high!

Wow, that's high up!

For the next part of the day, we took a trolley around Washington, D.C. and looked at all the monuments. We took the trolley to the Capitol building which was our next tour. 

See the statue at the top? That is the Freedom Statue.

At 3:00, we took a tour of the House of Representatives building. There were so many chairs in that room, and there had to be because every representative needed one. You weren't allowed to take pictures in that room, unfortunately. Next, we toured the actual Capitol building. Sadly, the Dome was under renovation so it looked like this:
Big renovation on the dome

Our trip to the Capitol building was still really interesting. There were paintings and murals everywhere. The day was over so we took the metro back to our hotel. Again, I flopped down on my bed and was out-cold in, this time, in three seconds! I was so tired from the day of sightseeing, and I couldn't wait for tomorrow, because we were going to the U.S. Mint.

Again, we woke up early in the morning and met Ryan and Kathy down at the buffet. As quick as possible, we took the metro to the Bureau of Engraving and Printing (where they make the money). We got tickets for 9:45, and it was 8:30, so we went to the Jefferson Memorial to pass the time. 

The Jefferson Memorial

Inside the memorial, there was a giant statue of Jefferson himself. He was really big and sort of scary, but cool and interesting at the same time. It was time for the Bureau, so we made our way over to the doorway of the Bureau. When we got inside, we watched a short video about how the money is made, and then we got to actually see it in action! No pictures were allowed whatsoever. The money was printed, sorted, checked for defects, cut, and boxed. Then it was shipped to the banks around the country. It was really interesting to watch the money go through all sorts of processes before it was sent out. There was even a guy fanning himself with a sheet of money. The Bureau was my second favorite thing in Washington, D.C. (besides the Washington Monument), and I would go back there if I ever went back to D.C. again. 

We didn't have anything else to do that day, so we went back to the hotel and chilled out. Ryan and I made a video about Washington, D.C. That night was more relaxed, and I got a good night sleep. The next morning was relaxed too. We went down to breakfast at 9:00 and took the metro to the National Archives at 10:00.
The National Archives

The National Archives is where the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, and the Bill of Rights are kept. I couldn't take pictures because it would damage the important documents, but they were bigger then I expected them to be. They were each about four times the average sheet of paper, and they all had a lot of writing on them. I wonder how long it took for Jefferson to write the Declaration of Independence. The Archives were a very interesting thing on my trip, but I still liked the Washington Monument best. 

Later that day, the four of us went to the Air and Space Museum. It was all about the stars and the universe, and also about the history of planes. 
This is a replica of one of the first planes ever.

Ryan and I became addicted to a space trivia game. We played that for an hour straight! Ryan and I had a lot of laughs during our endless games. Unfortunately, it was time to go. It was our last day in D.C, so we decided to make it count. At 8:00PM, we took the metro back out and saw all the monuments at night.

 This is the Washington Monument at night. Look at the moon!

By far, the most beautiful monument of them all at night was the World War 2 memorial. It was the most beautiful thing I have ever seen in my life!

Look at it- so beautiful!

We were done with Washington, D.C. the next day. It was incredibly fun, but we had to leave. I hope you get a chance to go.

Mrs. Yollis, I hope this post helps you in deciding what you want to visit when you go to Washington, D.C. I hope you have a great time there. 

Have you ever been to Washington, D.C?

If so, what was your favorite monument?

If not, what would you like to see there?