Friday, June 24, 2011

Day 6 - Washington, DC (1st day)

Washington, DC was not initially part of our plans but it was highly suggested to us by my in-laws. Moreover, my husband's boss resides there so it's a good chance for them to meet up and talk business for a night.

After debating how to get to DC, we settled on taking the Megabus. I'm glad we did as even if the trip was longer (at 4 1/2 hours), the bus had free wifi and you can charge whatever equipment you want.

We also booked a hotel online, Windsor Inn, which was the relatively cheap hotel/inn that we found. It's supposedly near Dupont Circle but I've forgotten what constitutes "near" here in the US. It was actually 4 LONG blocks away from Dupont! Here's their front door.

We arrived in DC after lunch time. As we didn't bring any food on the bus, we were very famished when we arrived at the parking lot bus stop. We made the mistake of not hailing a taxi and taking up the offer of one of the people standing their for a taxi. He charged us $20 but according to Leo's boss, it should be around $10 only. Oh well, lesson learned.

When we got to the Inn, our room was not yet ready. So we left our bags with the Front Desk and looked for a place to eat. We walked four blocks to Dupont Circle and found a Starbucks. I readily devoured my sandwich and water afterwhich, we walked the four long blocks back to the Inn where we checked in.

After freshening up, we decided where we wanted to go. Feeling very touristy, we decided to make The White House our first stop and walk our way towards the Lincoln Memorial. Here's a summary of all the places we've visited.

So we had a cab drop us off at the White House. Here we are posing for mandatory pics:

We realized later on that this was the BACK part of the White House and not their front door. Oh well, at least it's still the White House.

From there, we walked towards the Washington Monument. We passed by The Ellipse and arrived at the Washington Monument. Though it's just near, we didn't want to walk towards it was just too hot with no shade at all. So we just contented ourselves taking pictures from afar:

After another short walk, we arrived at the World War II Memorial where The Philippines has its own marker. I wanted to take a picture of it but there was this group of obviously Filipinos hogging the area. We decided to just take a picture in front of the Memorial:

Here's another view of the Washington Monument from the vantage point of the WWII Memorial:

We then made our way to Lincoln Memorial. We saw the Memorial from afar and tried to find the Reflecting Pool but all we saw were dirt and machines. It took awhile to register that the pile of dirt was the Reflecting Pool and was being renovated:

We took another picture of the Washington Monument and Reflecting Pool when we got to the Lincoln Memorial. It would've been perfect if they left the Pool alone:

The Lincoln Memorial was just awesome. I wanted to just stand there and reflect on the history that this place inspired but there were too many tourists around jostling for a nice shot. I just had to make do with the moment and took a few pictures of our own.

After the Lincoln Monument, we caught a cab to take us to the Smithsonian. We were supposed to walk but we were so drained by the heat. Being from Manila, I know we're used to the heat but in this case, the sun got the best of us again.

We first visited the Museum of American History. Their exhibits are more on the mode of transportation in the US. I like the trains more. Here are some of our photos:

We decided on the Air and Space Museum next. Turns out we had to cross The Mall to get to the next museum which is on the other side of the complex.

The National Mall is between Constitution Ave. and Independence Ave. surrounded by the different Smithsonian buildings. Here are some of our pictures there:

The Air and Space Museum showcased space shuttles, planes and such.

We went around for awhile and waited for Leo's boss to pick us up. We had dinner at a restaurant at Georgetown called Das. It features Ethiopian cuisine which was interesting. It's not something I would rave about but at least it was something different.

After dinner, we walked around Georgetown and had dessert at a place called Sprinkles.

I had a Milk Chocolate cupcake as shown below. Quite yummy. I was told that they're part of a show called "Cupcake Wars" although I have yet to see it. I did see the DC Cupcakes store but we were not able to go inside the store or take a picture of it.

I found Georgetown charming with its red brick buildings although populated with yuppies and young people (probably because of the university nearby). The photo below was taken between 830 to 9 in the evening.

And that's our first day at DC.

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