Tyler and I have been wanting and planning to visit Washington DC for over a year, and we finally found a way to get there (thank you JP Morgan) this past weekend. Unfortunately, our DC trip went nothing like we planned. To start things off Tyler booked the wrong weekend for both our hotel stay and rental car. Luckily we hadn't paid for the car yet and we have accumulated plenty of Marriott points (again, thank you JP Morgan) to not make us freak out too much about wasting a few on an empty hotel room for a weekend.
Then, Friday nite our flight out of Chicago was over-booked and Tyler volunteered our seats. At first I was a little stressed because I had spent quite a bit of time creating an extensive itinerary for the trip, seeing as DC has sooo many things to see and quite a few excellent museums to boot. However, as you will come to see, us giving up our seats was definitely a blessing.
I made the mistake of planning our DC excursion for Halloween weekend, the same weekend on which the John Stewart "Rally to Restore Sanity" was being held- creating anything but sanity in the DC area. Over 200,000 people were swarming the National Mall and DC area for the greater part of the day making traveling, whether in car, on foot, or on Segway, incredibly difficult.
Because we caught a flight out Saturday morning our entire morning was shot and we didn't even make it into DC until around 2pm, due to traffic and parking issues. Fortunately, our Segway tour reservations were for 2pm and we made it in the nick of time. We did love the Segways, however, because of the rallying masses we were only able to see about half the things the tour was supposed to include in the three hours. We did see the White House, WWII Memorial, Lincoln Memorial (impressive), Vietnam and Korean War Memorials, and the Washington Monument. My photos aren't that great because we were a bit rushed and there were a zillion people though :(
After our Segway tour we hightailed it out of DC and headed up to Maryland where we had a nice, calm evening at the DC temple- aka the most gorgeous building I have ever seen in my life. These photos did turn out and are solid proof of the fact :)
Sunday morning we went to church near our hotel, approx. 30 min. from the National Mall. We had scheduled out every hour, and since church is always on time (yeah?!), planned to have enough time to visit the top three museums on our list, and possibly the 9/11 Pentagon Memorial and Arlington National Cemetery. Well naturally, that didn't happen. Instead of taking 30 min. to get to DC it took us 2 1/2 hours due to all the roads around the Pentagon and up to the National Mall being closed off for the annual Marine Corp. marathon in which over 20,000 people were running. Boo, Halloween weekend in DC is the worst!
So we only had time for two of the museums, the American History and Air & Space Smithsonians, but I will admit that they were AWESOME!! Lincoln's top hat, Dorothy's ruby slippers, Kermit, C-3PO, Abigail Adams' (my fav) pearls, inaguration dresses, the Spirit of St. Louis, awesome 60's flight attendant ensembles, other cool airplanes and space crafts only Tyler can name, and moon rocks were a some of the highlights.
So, our DC weekend wasn't a complete bust (let's just call it a trial run), though we are already dying to go back and see the rest. Getting bumped from our first flight was a blessing in the end because we wouldn't have been able to see everything we had planned anyway because of the aforementioned events, and Southwest both reimbursed us for our original flight and compensated us for our kindness, making it possible for us to fly back without spending a dime on airfare. We are now planning a second take in DC in early December hoping for some snow white monuments and a chance to see "A Christmas Carol" at Ford's Theater- cross your fingers :)
P.S. Did I mention that in our rush to make our Segway tour I spilled honey in my lap and didn't realize it until a nice pool had formed between my legs? And, of course, I only brought one pair of jeans and so enjoyed the remainder of the trip walking around in sticky-crotch pants?! Yeah, that happened.