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Published: August 15th 2017
The Washington Monument and Reflecting Pool at sunrise.
I was still on UK time so I was up early and went out for another sunrise, this time to the Lincoln Memorial. For a second time, I was not disappointed and got a fantastic sunrise featuring the Washington Monument and the Reflecting Pool.
Again there was me and a few other photography geeks, and, despite the hour, lots and lots of runners. When not photographing the sunrise I went up to the memorial itself for a photo of the statue of Abraham Lincoln. There were some police up there so I asked if it was ok for me to use my tripod. "Technically no, but you can go ahead".
It was nice to enjoy the peace and quiet without all the crowds from when I was there the day before.
Our daughter was planning on another day by the pool. My wife wanted to go for a walk in the morning before going to the pool for the afternoon, so we headed off back down to Capitol Hill and, whilst there, Union Station and the eastern length of The Mall. It was cooler than it had been previously and it was very pleasant walking along The Mall
The stunning white granite frontage.
away from all the traffic. A complete contrast to London. And New York, for that matter, where we know in a few days time all the car horns will be Completely doing our heads in.
Union Station is absolutely stunning. As with most of the buildings in Washington, it is made out of white granite, albeit not the usual 'neo-classical' style, and with a number of huge inner arch shaped areas full of shops and restaurants. Strangely we couldn't actually see any trains.
Between the station and the Capitol are the Senate office buildings. Correct me if I am wrong, but I thought there were two senators per state, i.e. one hundred. Looking at the size of these buildings, their offices must be absolutely monumental. They make Portcullis House in London, where all our MPs have their offices, look very quaint and just about adequate.
On the way back we came across one of those tourist shops, which sells also the usual clichéd gift (like one that was in Heathrow airport with all the British equivalents). There was quite a lot of Donald Trump themed items, most of which were not exactly complementary. The Americans obviously don't
take him any more seriously than we do. We debated getting a pen with his head on the end, which, when pressed, sounds out some of his most notable quotes.
There is probably some "The pen is mightier than the sword" analogy I could use here, but I can't quite think of one. The pen itself would probably end up driving us nuts in the end, so we opted for a bottle opener, with his mouth as the piece you open the bottles with.
Obama still featured quite heavily, but it was all a lot more statesman like.
We had asked the hotel for a roll away bed as out son was arriving and it would be better for him and our daughter to have separate beds. I am not sure what conversation my wife had with the hotel, but there was a baby cot in the room when we got back. I can't wait to tell him.
As we needed to rush off to the airport, we had a quick meal at a burger place near our hotel called 'Shake Shack'. It's a lot more trendy than McDonalds and I could even have a beer. My wife loved the fact that the menu included some options for your pets.
The drive to the airport and back was uneventful and the roads were clear and flowing. Two lanes of the freeway seem to be exclusively for airport traffic so it is very, very different to getting the M25 or M4 to Heathrow. We debated going to the car park but decided to go straight to the terminal and our son was waiting there for us as we pulled-up. After absolutely no trouble changing at JFK, his flight had got in a lot earlier than we were expecting.
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