A visit to the White House
Trip Start Sep 18, 2011
25Trip End Oct 31, 2011
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We headed over the Benjamin Franklin Bridge which crosses the Delaware River into Philly and went straight to see Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell.
Independence Hall is where the Declaration of Independence was signed in 1776. A statue of George Washington is outside the building which is currently undergoing restoration. The Liberty Bell is across the road in a building that was closed so we could only get a glimpse through the window. Philly is also famous for the Rocky Steps – the steps Rocky uses for training, but we didn’t get to see them.
Back on the bus we headed to Washington D.C. The D.C stands for District of Columbia and is often used as an abbreviation for the area. Just outside of Baltimore we hit a major rain storm – the first real rain we have seen all trip. Once we made it to DC the skies cleared which was very fortunate for us as we did not have to worry about getting wet when we stepped off the bus.
Our first stop was the National Aerospace Museum. The museum is filled with all types of aeroplanes, rockets, space station, lunar lander and a Hubble telescope amongst other aeronautical items.
Don was keen to try the jet fighter simulator although I was a bit hesitant to participate at first. Don was the pilot and I was the gunner. Basically we were Maverick and Goose from ‘Top Gun’. Feeling a bit anxious we were strapped into the simulator and our flight began with Don at the controls. We were soon flying upside down both screaming and giggling whilst I was trying to launch missiles at the enemy aircraft.
Our mission was successful as we destroyed four enemy aircraft. A great team effort – high fives all round!!!
Outside the museum we quickly took photos of the Washington Monument and the Capitol Building before heading to the White House for a few photos and to try and catch a glimpse of the President.
Next we headed to the Potomac River for a cruise. The boat took us past several buildings, Titanic Memorial, The airport and the Pentagon. The Pentagon was difficult to see because it is not a very tall building and is hidden by trees.
Following the cruise we headed to the Jefferson Memorial which can be seen across the National Mall from the White House. Thomas Jefferson is the main person attributed with writing the Declaration of Independence in 1776.
From there we headed to the Abraham Lincoln Memorial. The Capital Building is at the opposite end of the National Mall with the Washington Monument in the centre and the Reflection Pond. The Reflection Pond is under reconstruction which is a shame as we would have like to have seen it the way we normally do on the news and in movies. Whilst at the Lincoln Memorial we are pretty certain that the President arrived at the White House via helicopter. Two helicopters zoomed in towards the White House and only one came back which we think was the decoy.
From the Lincoln Memorial it was a short walk to the Vietnam and Korean War memorials. The sculptures of the soldiers are quite haunting to look at.
After our visit to the National Mall area we headed to dinner at an Asian buffet before going to our hotel in Maryland. The bus departs at 7am tomorrow and we are looking forward to our first sighting of Niagara Falls.