Tuesday, August 12, 2014

A Day in DC: The National Archives and National Harbor

Hello my Lovelies and Gents,

So yesterday was a fun fun day. I had been invited to head in to DC and hang out with Cousin Randy and his friend Dustin, who is visiting from Missouri. Mondays are usually my Distance Day and I was hesitant at first because I didn't really want to change my schedule. But, I am here to spend time with family and since I don't get these opportunities that often. So I rearranged my schedule.

I love my family. When we were planning the day I asked what time we would be meeting I was told "How about in the afternoon, that way you can still get a run in in the morning?" Love my family!

So I got up and headed out for 5 miles. I didn't push it because I knew I would  be putting in more miles in the afternoon. I got my miles in and headed in for a shower. I didn't have to leave until noon so I also made sure to have lunch before I left. I had a turkey sandwich, carrots, and half of a sweet potato (leftover from the night before...yum).

I had been trying to decide about whether or not to take a backpack. I could bring snacks and water. I could bring a sweater. It would be on my back. It would be fine. But, I would also have to carry it around all day. It's really funny. As a kid I couldn't wait until I was adult. I would be able to take trips and buy the fun food whenever I wanted. No more packing snacks. I could get the chips, ice cream, and hot dogs any time I wanted. And now, that thought horrifies me. I need to pack my own snacks.

I packed my backpack and I put on my sneakers. It was time to go. Because I got to the Metro Station later in the day I had to park on the top level of the parking garage. The good news is that it was more steps for me. I love that it's good news now.

I met the boys at L'Enfant Plaza. Considering we were going to the National Archives it wasn't the closest stop. But, they could park and we got some some walking in. So we walked across the National Mall. On the way we saw dozens of Food Trucks. If you wanted chicken on a stick you could have it. You could have pizza. You could have falafals. You could have BBQ. You could have chips. You could have ice cream. It's all right there. Anything you wanted. Except for me. It was nothing I wanted. Hello New Me!

I wish we could have taken pictures in the National Archives. I understand why we can't, but there was so much I want to share. When we first walk in you see the Magna Carta. Right there!  I was a little taken a back. We didn't have to stand in line for it at all.

On a whole, we tend to forget as a country how recent changes happened. We saw lots of documentation from Segregation and Women's Rights. I was completely surprised to learn that even in the 70's married women could not apply for credit under their own name. Tennis Legend Billie Jean King was married and the sole support of her family. She was a world champion and couldn't get a credit card in her name. That was in my lifetime.

I spent a lot of time in that section. I came across a pamphlet that used to "Help Supervise Women". Oh yeah. They recommended being very patient. They emphasized focusing on safety. And it is very important to encourage and recognize good work. I have good news Ladies. According to the last page, we can be trained to do ALMOST any job a man can. Isn't that great!

After that we went upstairs and saw the Declaration of Independence. I didn't get to get too close to it, but I saw it. Sort of gave me chills. Then we visited the Public records and got to listen to recorded conversations with the Presidents. We went to the Signature gallery. I got a replicated John Hancock signature from a signature machine. Pretty cool. We really enjoyed it and learned a lot.

We were also happy to leave because we were parched. Luckily I had water in my backpack. We had some water and then walked through some gardens.

On our way back to the car I was happy to see so many people running and riding bikes. People were active!

We stopped at Starbucks before getting to the car. I needed some caffeine. I got a tall Mocha Cookie Crumble frappucinno as light as possible. While we were there I was allowed to ask Dustin about my ITB injury. He is a physical therapist and gave me some stretches to do. YEAH!

Soon we were heading towards the National Harbor. The only glitch is that we had to drive past the Ballpark and One Direction was in concert that night. It was still early, but those girls wanted to get there early.

Frequent hydrator that I am, I of course had to use the ladies room when we got there. I didn't see the public ones and went into a restaurant to use theirs. I was the only one in the restaurant so I grabbed a bottle of water and a cookie. Grr...so much for my snacks. Oatmeal Chocolate Chip. I couldn't resist. They said they were 100 calories. I am not sure about that.

The National Harbor is pretty cool. There is a huge ferris wheel. There are sculptures and a ginormous sandbox for kids. There is a pier with kayaks and paddle boats. There is a sitting area facing a large screen that even had Shark Week on. Shark Week is everywhere! :-)

The weather was a little cloudy and cool, but we got on the Ferris Wheel anyway. It was pretty cool. I think it would be amazing on a clear day.

Then we found a nice restaurant for dinner. We got outdoor seating that was covered. We were right across from the bar and it had Shark Week on there too. *Huge Grin*. The menu was nice and most things were really out of my budget. The budget tends to lead me towards the burgers. And the burger looked pretty good. Although it had bacon and BBQ sauce. As much as I like BBQ, I don't really like bacon on my burger. They had flatbread appetizers that I was thinking about, but I saw something else. I asked the waitress if the fondue appetizer was big enough for an entree. It had jerk chicken, croutons, grapes, and apples in a gouda fondue. That's what I got. I was venturing out. It was so delicious.

Spearing your dinner slows you down and takes time.

We were asked if we wanted dessert. Yes, but not a lot. So we all split the chocolate cake..O...M...G!

It was so rich. We couldn't even finish it.

So after dinner we walked around for a little while. It had started to rain. We went in to the Peeps store. A whole store devoted to Peeps. It was pretty much shirts and candy. It smelled good though.

We also found a Tervis store. OMG a whole store!  I had to go in. For the most part it was stuff that I had already seen and even owned. But, I found a 26.2 cup.  I got it. It's in the pile for after the race :-)

We took a few more pictures. The lights had come on on the ferris wheel and with the clouds behind it...well for a photo junky it was awesome.

I was getting tired and my sugar rush was ending. So they dropped me off at the Metro and I headed back to my car. I could have taken the elevator, but I did the stairs. Good for me! When I got to my car I checked my fitbit. I had walked another 5+ miles. That was 10+ for the day.  It was a good good day.

Have a Blessed Night

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