The ride into the capitol was fairly painless. It was Friday but I timed it before rush hour. Highway 50 turned out to be a pleasant straight route taking me right close to the hotel I booked.The only problem was the hotel I booked. Or, at least finding it. I had used Expedia and got a great rate at just around $100 a night. It was close to Union Station and looked pretty swank. Finding it was a little bit of a chore. The address led me to the entrance of a University with no sign of a hotel. The name was the Kellogg Conference Hotel but I could find no sign of it. I pulled up beside a cop just outside of the campus and inquired. She had never heard of it. A closer look at my confirmation email showed it 'at Gallaudet U. I went into the U and was directed to i, a large new building in the center of the campus. The good deal went up in smoke when I as informed I would be paying $20 a day in parking. Whatever! Turns out thee U is a school for the deaf and so there was a lot of silence involved with the place. Suites me fine.
The shuttle took me to Union Station
A bit of a walk had me in front of the Capitol Building with a view of the vast expanse of buildings and monuments I would be trying to conquer.
The weather couldn't have been better at around 80 degrees.
Castles and big, pointy things lay ahead.
Had to get a pic of this dude.
I mean, with my home town about to spend hundreds of thousands on a fleet of Victory cop bikes it is nice to see a practical set of sporty Harleys that are easy to handle and definitely keep the costs down.
The next mornings sunrise from my fancy room
I did the big walk.
To see the big guy.
And, in the words of Michael Rennie, 'Now there's a guy I'll bet I could talk to.' Or something like that.
And, of course, the words of eloquence.
Always wanted to see the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum so that was the topper for the day.
And, my hero, Chucks' wild ride.
And, of course, the Rise of the Machines.
Day three and the big weather change. Drizzle with a huge drop in temp.It was the reason I decided to haang one more day. Didn't feel like setting out into the rain.
Went for the Natural Science Museum first. Got to see one of my first ancestors. Or a bit of him.
Something a buddy of mine is involved in.
A lotta of dead stuff and of course, The Stone of Wisdom.
Wanted to scratch 'Toad was here' way down at the bottom but thought I'd better not.
Then it was on to the Vietnam memorial to pay my respects.
The Smithsonian Castle on the way
Where I hear they actually have the real Sleeping Beauty.(Stuffed, of course.)
This era effected me profoundly as I actually knew people involved and when hitchhiking thru California in '72, while camping on a beach north of Malibu, I became friends with badly wounded and recovering hospitalized vets who would come out to the beach daily with their nurses. I heard the stories and saw the results.
Ended the day at a local Irish sports bar watching three different football games and eating some way too salty food.
This morning I am seeing a bit of sun with aparrent rain to ride into as I head west.
Everybody has said I really have to ride the Blue Ridge Parkway so I am makig the big detour before getting back to the coast. Hope the tires last that long.