Friday, February 26, 2010

I'm back....

My trip was wonderful. Visiting with sis and my brother in law was great. Shopping became painful both physically and wallet-wise (VBG) but what incredible savings. Saw some touristy areas and sights that I have wanted to see for awhile.

Do you know where these photos were taken?

Yep, you guessed it the Library of Congress. What an amazing building. Since I enjoy reading and have read many books mentioning the rare book room, I wanted to experience that. I was told at the reception area that to enter that room, I needed to get a reader card and that was available in another building, the Madison building. So it was explained to me that I could go downstairs and use the tunnels to get to it. Amazing! Another city under a city. I have heard and read about these connecting tunnels, so I am glad I was able to use them to get my card. Eventaully saw the Rare books room, and then found out that only employees are able to go in the rare book vault. That made sense. So after awhile I found myself on my way to connect to a tour group, I noticed directions to the children's reading room. Went there first and visited that area. Had a lovely visit with the Director of that division. When we finished our conversations, she allowed me to use the backway to get to the next area I needed to go. The spiral staircase. I think this was mentioned in the Time Travelers Wife novel, but I am not sure. SWEET! Enjoyed the tour, but since I had a late start due to my back injury rearing it's ugly head, the Jefferson collection that I also wanted to see was now closed. Oh well, another time perhaps. Afterwards there was time to see the gem and mineral exhibit at the National Museum for Natural History. Getting to see the Hope diamond and the other gems was another check off my bucket list. Lovely!

Then my sister and I went on a little day trip:

Mount Vernon was great. The displays and information given was very interesting and we both enjoyed it immensely. Did you know George Washington had 5 farms? Mount Vernon was called the "Mansion Farm". It was inredible to walk in the same place as many historic figures have walked, how humbling.

Our last day together we thought we'd visit this:

DRATS! All the tickets were sold out. We hadn't reserved any. While I was checking at the window for any cancellations and their policy on it, a lady approached my sister with one ticket that was pre-paid. She asked if anyone wanted a ticket that needed to be used within a 10 minute timeframe. So... my sister gladly accepted it and then she gave it to me. Saying that she and her husband can easily return to see the exhibit before it closes next month, whereas for me it would be impossible with the travelling to get back down to see it. What sweethearts, they walked around and went to a coffee shop while I got to see The Terra Cotta Warriors Exhibit at the National Geographic Museum. Another item that was on my bucket list now checked off. In appreciation, I treated us all to a wonderful dinner at a little dinner grill in downtown DC. Wonderful trip and it's great to be home.


PS: The terra cotta warrior photos are not mine. I found them on line when I googled the subject since no photography was allowed in the exhibit. All of these items or items just like what is pictured were in the museum with the exception of the photo showing the terra cotta warriors being dug out at the sight where they were found. An amazing thought that Emperor Qinshihuang's (r. 221-207 BC) wanted to have for his tomb so he would have his armies to defend him in the afterlife. Who said you can't take it with you? (Chuckling) Can you imagine 8000 warriors with weapons, musicians, cranes, horses and carriages besides a landscape made to mimick the lands he ruled over were all made and buried for his necropolis. Amazing!

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