April 08, 2006
Washington DC w/Casey
In most of my journal entries I tend to be very wordy and forget to bring my camera so there are few pictures. Well, last week and this week should balance that out a bit. I’ve taken LOTS of pictures lately.
My brother, Casey, and I spent three days together in Washington DC last week. Since he is getting married in May I wanted to take a trip with him as our “last hurrah!” I was invited to the Radio and Television Correspondents’ Dinner where Vice President, Dick Cheney, was to be the keynote speaker. Steve was going to be in Israel so I was thrilled at the opportunity to spend the time with my brother.
We arrived in DC on Tuesday afternoon and immediately hit the streets. I love being able to walk everywhere. (Except for this blasted heel spur on my left foot!) We slept all the way on the plane and we were starving when we landed so our first stop was lunch. Steve had recently been in DC and said the place to eat was “Old Ebbit’s Grill.”
After lunch we set foot to visit all of the monuments and memorials. I had never seen the World War 2 memorial and was so moved by its grandeur. Casey’s favorite was the Lincoln Memorial but I’m still partial to the Vietnam War memorial. Along the way, we stumbled onto “The Blair House.” I couldn’t resist; I had to take a photo op at “my” residence.
Just next door was an art museum with a Grant Wood exhibit. How cool to see the “American Gothic” up close and personal. I didn’t realize how diverse Mr. Wood’s styles and mediums were. This was a pleasant discovery while on our monument marathon.
The first thing we did the next day was visit the National Spy Museum. We spent almost two hours here. I can’t wait to bring my kids back to this place in June. They will love it! Just around the corner was Ford’s Theater and the home where Abraham Lincoln died. After touring this site we ate lunch at the Hard Rock Café across the street where I picked up some souvenir guitar picks for Tucker.
My foot was killing me but we kept on trekking. We made three way-too-quick visits to the American Indian, Natural History, and Air & Space museums. It was while racing through the dinosaur exhibit that it suddenly hit me out of nowhere – I forgot to pack the silver shell that goes with the dress I was suppose to wear in just a couple of hours.
We hopped in a cab and asked him to take us to the nearest store. Either he didn’t speak English and didn’t know what I said, or it was just because he was a guy. Either way, he dropped us off at this dumpy basement store that had absolutely nothing! I grabbed a shirt that looked kind of silvery/blue (only to discover when I put it on that night that it was actually greenish/turquoise.)
We rushed back to the hotel to get ready for the dinner. It was a great evening all around but I’d say the highlight was the ride in the town car over to the Washington Hilton hotel. We shared a car with a gentleman who was an actual UN Weapons Inspector. Casey and I grilled him the entire trip and he was mesmerizing telling all of his experiences.
I hate dressing up, wearing pantyhose, high heels, and feeling out-of-place, so I was so grateful when we were seated at a table with the nicest people you would ever want to meet. The most fortuitous meeting was with a mother/daughter couple, Catharine and Ann Ryun, daughter and wife, respectively, of Congressman Jim Ryun.
Catharine works in the Faith-based Initiatives office of the White House and the moment we mentioned that we would like to take a tour she jumped into action to see if she could make it happen on such short notice. The very next morning she called us and said that if we could meet her in forty-five minutes she could take us on a tour herself.
Casey hopped out of bed and we headed to The White House. Catharine couldn’t have been more gracious. It was so good to hear about the Christians sprinkled throughout the government. She told us about Bible Studies going on (Beth Moore’s!) and prayer over the seats in the Senate and the House before big votes. It was very encouraging and convicting.
Before we left, we asked if there was a specific tour of the Capitol building or if we should simply visit the building. Catharine immediately jumped on her cell phone, called her father’s office, and set up a tour with her mother later in the afternoon. Wow! Mrs. Ryun was a hoot. Casey kept calling her “the joyful woman.” And she was! She gave us the best tour and kept us smiling the whole time. It was especially fascinating to have the opportunity to sit up in the Galley seats, both in the House and the Senate, and watch some of the goings-on.
Our time was winding down in DC but we had two more stops we wanted to make. As God’s grace would have it, we just happened to visit during peak Cherry Blossom time so we had to take a stroll around the basin and take in the incredible view. By the same token, we also had to visit the National Cathedral for one of the most beautiful sites imaginable. I wish some of my pictures had come out better because there is no way to describe the magnificent architecture and majesty.
I’ll try to get better pictures when our whole family returns in June for the annual Foursquare Convention. Better yet, I will say a quick prayer that your family will have the opportunity to see this and the many other fascinating sites in DC someday for yourself.
Posted by weblion at 09:54 PM