Metro, DC Exploring and Being Soaked

The rain chance for today is 100%! We loaded on the Metro with the intent of dodging raindrops and getting to the Natural History Museum. We arrived way too early so opted to walk in the light drizzle to the Capitol Building and see if we could get on a tour.

At least we had a really fancy Metro train!


We took turns at the window watching the lights in the tunnel zoom by.



Finally at the Capitol after a long walk. They are going a restoration on the dome. It will be painted with Sherman Williams paint when it is done. The color is called Dome White!



We had an excellent tour guide who taught us all about the history of the White House and the Capitol. Even though it was commissioned by George Washington he was the only president to never stay in the White House, he died before it was finished. The photo below is taken in the crypt. No-one is actually buried in the White House or the Capitol. Many have “laid in state” but not buried here. This is a memorial to George and Martha Washington. They are both buried at Mt. Vernon.


As I mentioned the dome is undergoing renovation. There was white sheets and scaffolding all over. We could see bits and pieces.


E and I enjoyed all the statues. We learned that each state can loan up to 2 statues. Only 34 are on display in Statuary Hall. They weight so much the floor would collapse. The others are located around the property. This room housing the statues is also a parabolic echo chamber. Our guide demonstration how is we stood in one very specific spot (where the desk of John Adams used to sit) we could eavesdrop on people across the room. How cool!


We also learned that the Capitol Building has a special walkway to access the Library of Congress. YES!! I asked if I could get a library card.



We spied into the main meeting room and could see droves of books behind it. I was really impressed with the private Thomas Jefferson collection. The books were marked with different colored ribbons. Green meant original to the collection. I was really impressed with the books. I even saw the Iliad and the Odyssey.


Next we visited the US Botanical Gardens. This was a huge hit. We really liked seeing the plants from all over the world. I loved the desert room. They had barrel and saguaro cacti!

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There was a children garden but it was too wet to play.


We took time to spend at the Discovery Cart and learn about cacao. I impressed the docent with my knowledge of the process.


After lunch and visiting the National Museum of the Native American we headed over to the Air and Space Museum. It was insanely crowded! There were lots of school groups. E and I found quiet places that seemed boring to many of the kids. We discussed armament and examined all the different bullet casings. We learned what it took to become an Ace shooter.


We played on the pretend Navy ship.


We saw a model of the moon rover.


I enjoyed the historical displays and seeing how aviation developed through the years.



This display on hot air balloons in battle was rather interesting. We learned about ballast bags and how they are made to explode the bottom out and the pellets drop and scatter instead of a giant bag falling on someone.


The Wright Brothers are always a favorite of mine. This is the original plane flown by the brothers. The coverings on the wings was replaced in the 1980s but other than that it is all original.


I was happy to see I could meet all of the qualifications for an astronaut. But then I saw the toilet. NOPE! Going to cross astronaut off the list. The toilet had entirely too many directions. I would be the one who would forget a step and launch my stuff into the shuttle instead on into the bags.


It was still sprinkling on our trip back to College Park. We got home and dried off and warmed up. It was a really fun day of exploring. Tomorrow is the ZOO!

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