Thursday, December 18, 2014

DC with Dad

This fall I had just six weeks in the DC area to indulge in favorite sights, foods, friends, and fun. I was in training all day every day during the week but still managed to fit in some wonderful fun. First up, a visit with my Dad!

My dad brought me my car from NH when I first got to DC and stayed for a week to soak up history, culture, art, and fun. His stay coincided with some spectacular weather, and we had a great time seeing some new to both of us DC staples. On Saturday we headed to the National Museum of the American Indian, happily visiting on one of the days they were celebrating Day of the Dead. We were treated to some amazing displays of art, singing, and dancing while there. The cafeteria was quite busy and tasty, but I think it was too busy to be truly enjoyable that day. I'll have to go back and choose my foods based not on the shortest lines but by what sounds best.

We walked along the Mall a bit before heading back to VA for Dad's inaugural trip to Wegmans. It was lovely to be back at this oh glorious of food emporiums. We picked up assorted goodies and had a quiet night in. On Sunday we woke up to a power outage, which I realized wasn't as convenient in Uganda as the generator didn't automatically kick in. Luckily the power came on during our outing to Safeway and we were able to get in showers.

First up was a trip to Eastern Market and a wander through the stalls followed by brunch at the Boxcar Tavern. I had bought timed entry tickets to go up the Washington Monument so we headed back downtown and strolled among the Sunday sports leagues and enjoyed that wonderfully DC spectacle. After a visit to the WWII Memorial it was time to go up the monument. Neither of us had gone up before, and it was lovely to see the view of DC from that high up! My favorite part, though, was seeing the commemorative stones placed by various cities, states, and countries from the elevator down. So neat, and something you can't see from outside.

After that we visited the Holocaust Museum, always a somber look at a painful time in history. I hadn't been since high school and, especially having visited Auschwitz since my last visit, it was interesting to better understand some of the exhibits and put them into greater context. The collections (non-permanent) included video segments from Darfur and Syria, both current crises/genocides, depending on how you define them. I won't try to do so here. But seeing some of the footage from refugee camps in Uganda and knowing I'll soon be in Lebanon, these really hit home. We definitely don't always learn from history.

During the rest of the week Dad and I had dinner with my aunt and cousin at a lovely Balkan restaurant in Eastern Market, and D and I introduced him to the wonder of Pho 75. He's a fan of both. On his own that week, while I was at work, he managed to take in the Botanic Garden, the National Gallery, the Museum of American Art and the National Portrait Gallery, National History Museum, most of the monuments - including MLK Jr and Einstein - and the Zoo. Quite a full week; his FitBit was super happy with his walking and gave him uber badges all week.

DC has long been a vacation destination for my family, since we have had family in the area since I was in high school and then with my going to university there and joining the FS. Next time I'm there for any length of time my parents intend to both come and stay for a while. The museums and sights never get old, and there's always something new to see and do (and eat).

1 comment:

Nomads By Nature said...

What a great week with your Dad! We love DC as well - so much to take in and see/do. We are looking forward to a quick stop in the summer during home leave with lots of walking!!