Washington, D.C. September 20 through September 30

Click on the above thumbnail for a map of points visited during this time period.

(Photos at bottom of page)

Barb:

We arrived back in Washington on Tuesday ready to relax and see the sights only to discover that Eddy (a dockhand from the Capital Yacht Club) had not started his two day project of cleaning and waxing our boat.  He had planned to do it on his days off while we were in Las Vegas.   When we finally tracked him down he told us that he would start that afternoon as soon as he finished another boat.  We left the boat with his assurance and spent the day with Teri sightseeing.  

We started at the Smithsonian Castle on the National Mall which is an information center for the 13 Smithsonian museums in the area.  We watched a short video that reviewed what was in each museum and where we could find the museums.  I find it amazing that all of these first class museums are totally free and open to the public.  I guess they are considered the Nation's museums.  We headed off to the Museum of Natural History where we saw the Imax 3D movie "Into the Deep".  It was excellent.  Later Teri and I checked out the Hope Diamond which is huge, blue and beautiful.  I didn't know that diamonds could be blue.  Hopefully my photo of it will turn out.  Eventually we had to drag Chuck out of there or he would have spent the entire day on just the fossils and dinosaurs.  Hopefully, we'll have time to go back another day.   We decided to do a quick look at a few other things in the area, so headed off to the Museum of American History.   After it closed we headed to the Washington Monument.   We were too late to get to the top, but will try to do that another day.  We then walked to the new WW II Memorial.  It was quite impressive and after checking out their Registry, I discovered that Dad's name is not included as a WW II veteran.  I guess a fire destroyed many of the records from the war, so they are asking folks to send in names of those who supported the war effort if they are not already included.   I got in touch with Dad the next day and he has since sent me his war information, so I can get him added.

When we returned to the boat that night, we discovered that Eddy still had not started on our boat but he assured us he was taking a day vacation the following day and would get started on it then.  Since our week at the marina was up on Wednesday which was the next day, Eddy worked out a deal to let us stay so he could finish it.   On Wednesday morning he didn't show up until 10:30 am but he did begin cleaning it.  He was using hull cleaner which is a strong acidic cleaning product to get the stains off the hull which are a byproduct of cruising in the ICW.  We spent the afternoon in the Smithsonian Museum of American Indians.  We discovered that we had hit the jackpot as Wednesday, September 21st, was the 1st anniversary of the opening of the museum.  Thus, the museum was open until 9:00 pm instead of 5:30 pm, an Indian blues band played in the lobby starting at 6:00 pm, and the excellent gourmet restaurant was open all evening.  We had all sorts of Indian dishes that were delicious, as well as wine and beer.  Not bad for a museum!

We got back to the boat late only to discover that Eddy had not started waxing the boat and would be off for the next few days because his wife was having a baby.  We were pretty irritated as we could not leave the area until the boat was waxed or all areas that were cleaned with the hull cleaner would stain immediately because they no longer had any protective wax and would need to be cleaned again.  Chuck decided to wax the transom (rear of the boat) so we could move the boat to the anchorage without dirty water splashing up from the engine and/or generator exhaust and staining the boat.  Fortunately, the dockmaster felt bad about the situation and loaned Chuck one of their work rafts.  Chuck ended up spending all day Thursday and most of Friday waxing the boat at the dock.  It was a lot of work, but looks great and saved us a lot of $$.  

We had planned to move out to the anchorage when he finished waxing, but we were having guests for dinner and didn't have time to get ready and move, and so we spent one last night at the dock.  Chuck's former colleagues Ray Greenlaw and Mark Burge (with Mark's wife Lenka) came for dinner that night.  Mark and Lenka moved to D.C. in August and live in Arlington which is just a short distance from our marina.  Ray was up from Savannah for academic business.  We enjoyed showing them the boat and having an evening catching up with them.

The next morning (Saturday) we finally moved out to the anchorage and were happy to be off the dock.  We dinghied in to the marina and took the Metro to join Mark and Ray for lunch.  Afterwards we went down to the National Mall and watched the peace protesters (rumored to be 150,000 strong) and wandered around the National Book Festival.  I saw David McCullough and David Ellis, and bought Ellis' book "George Washington".  I would have gotten McCollough's "1776", but they were sold out.   I considered joining the peace protesters, but didn't have a sign and of course I was with others who were more interested in the museums.  We all hung around the Nation Sculpture Garden waiting for another former colleague of Chuck's, Geir Agnorsson, who is now teaching at a nearby university.   After he joined us we did the Hirschorn Art and Sculpture Museum before calling it a day as our feet were too tired to keep going.  Chuck and I had dinner at the marina clubhouse and headed back to the boat to put our feet up for a nice quiet evening.

On Sunday morning I dinghied Chuck over to the East Potomac Park where he had a long run while I went out in search of the Sunday paper.   The Washington Post is a great paper.  After breakfast we put on our tennis shoes and headed out to see more of DC.  First to the Jefferson Memorial, then to the Franklin D. Roosevelt Memorial, then to the Lincoln Memorial, and finally to the Vietnam Memorial.  All very impressive.  I think I enjoyed the FDR Memorial the most.  Then on to the Whitehouse where we got chased off of the Ellipse due to a package that was left in the middle of the field.  The police cordoned off the area and called in the bomb squad.  We got out of there and found a place for lunch before we went to the movie "Broken Flowers".  I enjoyed the movie and my feet got a needed rest.  Afterwards we were off to the National Gallery of Art.   Talk about awesome.  I can't say enough about all the fabulous art that our government has collected or been given.  It is incredible.  We only scratched the surface and definitely need to go back.   There is so much to see and do here, it is amazing.

On Monday we met Teri for lunch and then headed to the National Zoo.  I was particularly interested in seeing the pandas as they have a pair who gave birth via artificial insemination in July.  The mother and baby are secluded but can be seen via a remote monitor.  The baby is adorable and is currently less than 10 pounds and 21 inches long.  About the size of a human baby.  The father Tien Tien was out and we sort of got a picture of him.  I was surprised at how big he was.  I was somehow thinking he'd be a small little bear, but not so.  The zoo is building the panda and other Asian animals a new home which will be ready next year.  I hope to come back and see them then. 

We took the Metro back downtown and stopped at the seafood market to pickup dinner.  I don't think I mentioned that there is an awesome seafood market right next to our marina.  There must be about 10 different vendors each with a large assortment of all sorts of fish.  Most of the fish is raw but you can also get shrimp, crab and lobster cooked, as well a a number of delicious soups and chowders.

On Tuesday we headed for the National Art Gallery after lunch.  We closed the place down and hadn't even made it to the East Gallery which contains the modern art.  (I guess that will be another day.)   We next headed for the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts which is a memorial for JFK.  What a spectacular place!  They hold a free concert everyday at 6:00 pm.   We enjoyed hearing Boubacar Traore from Bali.  I understand that the concerts are live via the web at www. kennedy-center.org.   We'll have to check it out when we are no longer here.  There is a bust of Kennedy and some of his quotes in the building, but it is mostly a place for opera, concerts, plays, etc.  I think that is the best memorial of all.  We found an excellent Thai restaurant for dinner before we headed back home. 

On Wednesday we did a brief tour of the Air and Space Museum before going back to the National Art Gallery East Wing.  We bought a mobile for the boat designed by the father of mobiles - Alexander Calder.  It matches the modern design in our salon and is now hanging over the table.  On Thursday we spent time at the Natural History Museum, as well as the Freer and the Sackler museums.  Thursday evening we went to the bluegrass concert at the Kennedy Center and during the concert received three voice mails telling us that our anchor appeared to be dragging.  We got the messages after the concert and quickly headed back to the boat.  We discovered that the wind had really picked up and our two anchor lines were fully stretched out.  That put our boat very close to a sailboat on a mooring.  We shortened one of the anchor lines to keep our distance but eventually decided to weigh anchors and move to another spot.   We were pleased to have folks watching out for us.  On Friday we took it easy, did some shopping and decided to head out the next day so we could spend time in St. Mary's and in Solomons before the Krogen Rendezvous starting October 6th.

Below are photos from this time period - click on them for a larger view...

Tusen Takk II at anchor in D.C.

Chuck waxing boat

Smithsonian Castle

Smithson's casket in Smithsonian Castle

Hope diamond (yes - it's blue)

WW II Memorial

World War II Memorial

Scene in WW II Memorial

Another view

Teri and Barb in front of Memorial with Washington Monument in background

Chuck and Barb at WW II Memorial

Couldn't believe Bush got his name on this

Chuck at WW II Memorial

Bureau of Engraving and Printing

View of Lincoln Memorial over Reflecting Pool

Exhibit at Hirshhorn Museum

Hirshhorn

Hirschhorn sculpture

Chuck at Hirshhorn

Van Gogh self portrait

Art at American Indian Museum

More Indian art

National Book Festival at Mall

David McCullough being interviewed at Book Festival

Peace Protesters

Chuck, Mark and Ray at National Mall

Chuck as the "Thinker"

Chuck with colleagues Ray, Geir and Mark

Jefferson Memorial

Jefferson

Jefferson Memorial

Tour group at Lincoln Memorial

Chuck at Lincoln Memorial w/reflecting pool and Washington Monument in background

Casimir Pulaski Monument which mentions Savannah

Vietnam Memorial

Whitehouse

FDR Memorial

Chuck with FDR

Barb with Eleanor

FDR's New Deal

FDR Memorial - quite beautiful

Capitol

Panda (Tien Tien) - he is huge!

Chuck and his brother

Elephant enjoying throwing hay on his back

Teri and Barb at zoo

Watergate building