Half A Day In The Capital

Trip Start Mar 01, 2007
Trip End Oct 02, 2007

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Flag of United States  , District of Columbia
Monday, March 26, 2007

So after a night of pretty much no sleep at all onboard an Amtrak train we arrived in Washington DC only 2 hours late... seriously how do they lose so much time on these trains??? weird.

We'd decided prior to leaving home that we really wanted to see Washington, but as we are on such a tight schedule we could only afford to spare half a day sightseeing here, so the only option available to us was the Tourmobile sightseeing hop on hop off buses that give a commented tour around DC.

We firstly went and booked our train to New York for this afternoon, then went and found somewhere to store our bags until it was time to leave, neither of us really fancied carrying them around with us all day!

After we'd done that we headed to the Tourmobile bus stop and waited for the first bus to stop, but as it was only about 2 minutes later we didn't really have to wait very long. We'd already decided that the first stop we were going to make would be the Arlington Cemetry, as it was the furthest out, its not my kind of thing really visiting a graveyard, I feel like I'm I don't know, graverobbing I guess, but as Rachael really wanted to see the changing of the guard, I decided it would be better if I kept my mouth shut and just go along, we didn't need any arguements this early in the trip!

So off we went to Arlington Cemetry, I never really realised how big Washington actually is, and how much there is to see. We saw so much on the way that we weren't going to have time to see in our half a day we'd alloted ourselves, like the Capitol building, the Washington Monument up close, the Smithsonian Museums, and loads of the other president and war memorials.

Once we'd madde it to Arlington we saw hundreds, probably thousands of identical white headstones - it really wasn't nice to see, and the fact that this place is actually a tourist attraction actually sickens me a little bit, there was a massively grieving family leaving as our shuttle pulled up and I actually felt awful about the fact they had just buried their family member and we were here to gawk at things, I really hated it there. Whilst we had to be here anyway we saw the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, which really was nothing special, and JFK's gravesite, which loads of people were taking pictures of, which I'm 90% sure is just disrespectful.

Thankfully we left pretty soon after and headed to the Lincoln Memorial, which was starting to fill up with people, there is a really nice view from the top of the steps here out across towards the Washington Monument and the Capitol Building, and after taking some pictures of Abe Lincoln himself I found out something that I didn't know, Martin Luther King gave his 'I Have A Dream' speech from the steps at the Lincoln Memorial... I never knew that, its nice to know that history really happened... you know what I mean, that history, big shaking things up history, happened in places that already had so much history behind them. Ramble over. Unfortunatley Pres Lincoln did not come to life like he does in the Simpsons, so we made do with some pictures and headed on our way to the White House.

When we arrived at the White House visitors centre we realised we had seriously miscalculated the amount of time we would need in the city, we marched down to the fences of the White House, took some pictures, discussed how we were disappointed we didn't see George W. and laughed along with the guy telling us about the guy with a machete that tried to get through the front doors of the White House... crazy Americans... and then we left, headed back to Union Station (which by the way is what a lot of the train stations are called over here!).

An hour later and we were actually heading for New York City! on yet another train!
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