Wednesday, February 13, 2013

My free day in DC

Last Saturday I had a free day in DC - so what did I do?

 Woke up at 6:30am.

I stopped at the Cornerstone Bakery for a quick breakfast.

I took the metro to Capital South station.

I took a tour of the Capital.  It was my first time there.  What a magnificent structure!

I took the indoor walkway to the Library of Congress (it was about 30 degrees but with the wind it felt like 8 degrees).  It was my first time inside here.

I walked up by Union Station to the National Postal Museum.  Took a quick tour and read fun facts about the postal service.  FYI they have a penny press there, but is is $1.01.  I am used to them only being $0.51.

Then I walked over to the Folger's Shakespeare Library.  It was now 12 noon, and it just so happened that they were giving a tour of the reading room, so I went on the tour...why not?  It was an hour, and it was...different.  The first half they told us about the Folgers and about Shakespeare  how the Library came about, and about the books and researchers.  The second half they explained so many of the painting on the wall.  After the tour I decided to see if they had any tickets left for the performance later that evening...I figured it would be best to see a Shakespearean play at a place that is all about Shakespeare.

From here I walked to the south end of the Mall.  I realized I was starving.  Not knowing if there was anything to eat round there, I just went to the first thing I saw - a street truck - and got an eggroll and gaterade and found a park bench to eat it on...don't forget it was freezing, my hands were loosing feeling eating the overly peppered eggroll.

I decided to go into the Botanical Gardens...but I ended up just doing a quick loop since I realized I was there before.

Up next was the Hirshorn Museum and Sculpture Garden.  This structure was a circle, with two floors up and one floor down (the down was the restroom and gift shop).  The exhibit at the time was the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, I wasn't a fan, although the 12 sculptures outside of animal heads that correlated with the Chinese calendar was neat.

Next was the Castle.  I did a quick read through some of the cases - and was distraught when I saw this because I have such a fear of these creatures...and this was HUGE, you can't tell from the picture, but it was probably equivalent to a size 6 woman's shoe!
[I made it smaller than the other pictures so I don't have to focus on it.]

Then off to the S. Dillon Ripley Center.  There were events going on, so I read some of the paintings and left, I was only in there maybe 20 minutes.

Once I got back outside, I sat on a bench and was just so exhausted.  I decided I couldn't handle anymore, so I walked back up to 14th and P to get some Ethoipan to go, and went to the hotel to relax, it was about 4:30pm.

I had a little free time, and did a tiny bit of work and watched some TV, and at 7 I headed back to the Metro to go back to the Folger Shakespeare Library to see Henry V, which was excellent.  This was the first time I saw a live show/play by myself.

The Capital was just as beautiful at night.  Then back to the Metro to get back to the hotel.  It was probably around 10:45 by now.

Once I got back to the hotel, I had to call Amtrak since my train was cancelled due to the snow.  I was on hold for about 30 minutes, and then had a very annoying conversation with the reservation specialist.  It was now past midnight.  I tried to go to sleep, I laid down, but I kept writing my complaint letter in my head and couldn't sleep, so I decided to screw it, head to Union Station and get on the 3:15am train back to NYC {this will be a future post, maybe} instead of the 9am or 1pm train.

I get to the train station about 1:30am and catch up on a few shows on my iPad, thank goodness Amtrak has free wifi.  I didn't want to fall asleep because I was traveling alone and I don't trust people (even though there were quite a few cops right there), and because I didn't want to be unable to sleep once I got on the train.

I was able to sleep a little bit on the train, a little here and there.  Nothing too sound. More like a few short naps.  I got into NYC around 6:40 and didn't get home til 8:30am.  Look how empty Grand Central is at 7:15am on a Saturday! What a difference from my everyday commute.

I couldn't wait to go to sleep this night, what a long 38 hours!

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