Where The All Powerful Live

Trip Start Nov 02, 2011
Trip End May 31, 2012

Flag of United States  , District of Columbia
Friday, July 27, 2012

After 20 smooth and issue-less flights spanning many thousands of miles, little did I expect 2 domestic US flights to turn into such a palava.

Flight No 1 – Miami to Philadelphia: In United Airways infinite wisdom after completing boarding they decided to disembark 5 passengers in favour of some who were heading for a transfer flight to Paris, but were late for some reason.  Due to the delay, impressively, not only were they late anyway but were two other flight transfers!  Even after promises to throttle up to still get us there on time, I arrived at my gate to watch my second flight backing away from the gate.

Flight No 2 – Philadelphia to Miami:  The service desk was prepared however, with tickets for the 9pm flight all issued for me and 2 other girls who had also missed the connection.  On inquiring if there was an earlier flight, apparently there was one at 8:10pm (so why wasn't I ticketed for this flight I hear you ask.  Well who knows).  So a little window shopping later.  I boarded to find myself in First Class! Yeyah!!  A couple of Bloody Mary’s later We were off, well as far as the taxi-way, before the pilot turned us around and took us back to the gate, with a report of an engine issue.... humph...  30 Minutes later it was 9pm and the last flight to Washington left (earlier I had tickets for that flight!) and we sat for another hour waiting for ours.  But re-board we eventually did and a few more Bloody Mary’s.  The pilot really did throttle up and the usual 1 hour 10 minute flight took a mere 35 minutes!!

All in all a pain but there was a real camaraderie (well at least in first class) and I met some lovely people, including my row buddy Tom, who was a retired F14 air force pilot.  Tessa who had already gone to bed in despair of me, was kind enough to let me in at about midnight. x.  We decided to make up for our lost night out by going out the following 2 nights instead.

Tessa was away to work with the dawn, but I stayed 'home’ and enjoyed a morning of home comforts, like, watching TV under the duvet; having breakfast on the sofa, whilst watching TV & one thing that I never knew I had missed – walking bare foot on carpet!!  Ahh what bliss!!

Still no more time for indulgence, although I could easily have stayed, a new hostel and tourist attractions awaited.  Turns out there’s a lot to do in Washington DC.

The city had cooled today & was a balmy 34oC with a mere 50% humidity.  The metro was easy to negotiate and the hostel conveniently located 6 blocks from the Capitol Building – the second I’ve seen on this trip!  The Capitol Building is at one end of The Mall, which is a long strip park, lined with government buildings and the Smithsonian Museums.  2/3 of the way down is the Washington Monument, where you could  continue on to the Lincoln Memorial or turn right for the White House (which is remarkably smaller than I imagined).

That evening I headed back to Tessa’s ‘Hood’ – Adams Morgan – where had a lovely tapas dinner, a few beers and reminisced about life time ago in Bristol.  It was nice to hang out with a friend from back home.

In the morning the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum beckoned.  It was stunning, the exhibits enormous and material interesting.  And this praise coming from a complete heathen who gets bored in about 10 minutes just at the thought of a museum.  I was most impressed with the Apollo Lunar Expedition exhibit.  They had the Apollo 2 landing craft on display.  Its amazing we actually get people to & from the moon with good solid but basic engineering.  There were no frills on this spacecraft; they were really brave men who made that trip.

I even made an attempt at expanding my mind and visited the Hirshhorn museum, but to be honest a bunch-a neon tubes of various colours in a white room confirms for me someone gets paid too much money for a bunch of ole nonsense.  Well not much mind expanding there then.  I think I need to stick to my own art form – dance.

Next night saw me gate-crashing one of Tessa’s friend’s birthday drink.  All but one were Europeans working in Washington.  They were very gracious in accepting me into their ranks.  And I had very enjoyable evening.  One particular discussion around the merits of ‘home’ cuisine (whether, US or English) was the hot debate!  Apparently in the UK we contributed vinegar on chips and that’s pretty much it...

Thanks Tessa and Washington for an unexpected treat.
- JJ
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Martin Slade on

I was hoping to go to DC and also Arlington Cemetery in march when I was in the States but didn't have time in the end. Enjoy the rest of the USA James!

smitherson on

Hey thanks Martin, back in a few weeks, so will have to find an excuse to catch-up!

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