Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Freestyling, Flying Things, and Oblique References

Since we arrived at our hotel before noon, we had the entire afternoon to drag our exhausted/injured/sick children around Washington, D.C. And by "we," I mean "me" because the K had to go to work. His firm has a Washington, D.C. office so that he didn't have to miss a minute of the glamorous world of practicing law for a family vacay (insert emoticon with one wryly raised eyebrow). He was able to join us for lunch and was nice enough to pick a spot (BGR, The Burger Joint) and map out directions on his phone. Unfortunately, he selected driving directions, so we traversed nearly the entire circumference of Dupont Circle moving with the traffic, before we arrived at Connecticut Avenue, which was only two streets over from our starting point had we walked against the traffic. Did I mention that it was 98 degrees? When we finally reached Connecticut Avenue, we walked right past the restaurant, which was on the other side of the street, and were halfway to Maryland before we realized our mistake. At this point, the Baby decided that she could no longer walk and I completed the Butaan Death March to BGR carrying 98.6 degrees and 40 pounds of Baby. I wasn't exactly wowed by my veggie burger, but the kids seemed to like their sliders well enough. They did have one of those fancy Coke Freestyle machines:

Over 125 different Coca-Cola flavors. Read all about it in Wikipedia
Naturally, the children had to help me figure out how to use it because I was probably dehydrated from our flight and carrying the Baby all over God's green earth (err, well, God's grey sidewalk littered with homeless people). It certainly couldn't be that they had to help me because I am old. Certainly not!

After lunch we got to do our favorite Washington, D.C. activity: the Metro. Seriously, my kids would just ride the Metro all day and be happy. They love it. Even the screaming end of days protestors carrying fake rifles and wearing "Do You Know Jesus?" shirts didn't faze them. Me, yes. We headed to the Air and Space Museum, which we attempted to visit during our last Washington, D.C. trip, but then it was during spring break and was a total mob scene. It was much less crowded this time, and we were actually able to walk around without linking arms like Laverne & Shirley so that no one would get lost.

Here the kids are trying out the seat sizes on different airplane models.
Oh, and goofing off, too.

Spirit of St. Louis in the background.
Flown by Charles Lindbergh of
aviation, kidnapping, eugenics, and secret-family-having fame.
I thought the Boy would be more into the space exploration part of the museum because he's gotten interested in the constellations recently, but I think the Motrin was wearing off and he wasn't feeling 100%.

After we'd seen what we wanted at Air and Space, we headed over to meet Mom, who was also in Washington, at the Sculpture Gardens. This involved another long walk and me carrying the Baby while mirages of tiki bars shimmered before my eyes. We finally caught up with Mom and enjoyed an air conditioned break in the Sculpture Gardens snack bar.

The Sculpture Gardens itself is pretty interesting. I think this is one of the most notable, or at least memorable pieces:


And, if you're old enough to remember one of these, you're probably too old to use the Coke Freestyle machine without assistance.

Then we headed next door to the National Museum of Natural History to go to the Butterfly Pavilion. This was our third visit to the Butterfly Pavilion, so obviously we love it. You buy a ticket and go into a butterfly habitat (read, hot and humid) that is stocked with butterflies from around the world. If you're lucky, one lands on you and you have a lovely butterfly encounter.

Butterflies landed on each of the girls, but they flew away before I could get a good picture.

After the butterflies, we raced back to the hotel to change because the Girl and I had a amazing evening. I would love to tell you all about it, but getting clearance is taking a little while and I am impatient. If and when I get the okay, I will update this post. For now, I'll just leave you with this picture:

And say that the owners of the real life version of this little guy are super nice. Hopefully, this is vague enough to not get me in trouble!

Up for Day 2 - Washington Duck Boat Tour, Shake Shack (which was so delicious that I wasn't even put off my food when I witnessed a man inject himself with insulin prior to devouring his burger and shake), and The Spy Museum. Oh, and yes, at this point the Boy is still running a fever and the Girl is still complaining about her foot.


  1. Is that a giant eraser? Good thing I don't drink soda anymore. That machine is mystifying. Kidding. Mostly.

    I think you need to edit that last paragraph - isn't the foot fractured?!

    1. It's a giant typewriter eraser. I think I remember seeing one at my grandmother's house in the 70s.

      I'm writing this later, but as of the time we were in DC, we had no idea about her foot.

  2. I cannot go any further without letting you know (did you know?) that ATL IS GETTING SHAKE SHACK in 2014!! Buckhead. I told my family we may have to move into a condo there.

    1. Shut the front door! I will be there with my insulin injections in hand. I even liked the custard, although the kids thought it was "slimy." We all agreed that the burgers were fan-freaking-tastic, though.