07 November 2008

DC Trip: Episode IV

The picture above is the roof of the subway station. The lighting from the sun coming through the glass and the concrete slats made for an awesome picture. I think it turned out well.

Lincoln in the marble. If I'm not mistaken it's built to his original proportions.

The crowded little bookstore in the Lincoln Memorial. You think our tax dollars could afford a much bigger place.

The Vietnam Memorial. 
My experience with this wall was more than I expected. I knew of the wall. I had seen pictures of the wall. So I though, "Well now I just get to see it up close." When you stand before this wall you become overwhelmed by the number of names, and when you realize that people were behind these names, you cannot helped but feel moved. I found out that the start of the timeline resides in the middle of the wall, so that the first soldier to fall rests beside the last soldier to fall.

The Washington Monument.
I had no idea that you can ride to the top of this thing. It was really cool. The view is amazing and the inside of the monument is filled with decorative stones from different states and countries.

06 November 2008

DC Trip: Episode III

The newest memorial in DC is the Pentagon Memorial to remember those who died in the attack on the Pentagon on September 11. It was one of the most thought out and thoughtful memorials in DC. There is an enormous amount of detail worked into the memorial, not to mention how serene and peaceful the atmosphere was.

Each individual was given a bench with their name inscribed on the end of the bench. Under each bench  flowed a stream that was lit from underneath. If you are looking at a bench and look up and see the Pentagon, the individual died in the Pentagon. If you look up and see the sky, then the individual died on the airplane. There is also a wall that runs the perimeter of the property. At the beginning of the property the wall is two feet tall. At the end of the property that wall is seventy-one inches tall. The youngest person that died there was two years old. The oldest person that died there was 71 years old. Also on the wall were years, and if you followed that year from the wall perpendicularly, out on the field would be benches of people who died who were born that year.

This woman sat and stared at the Pentagon the entire time we were there. We found out from the police officer there that many times family members will come out and sit on their loved one's bench, as was the intention of the monument designers.

This was laid at the start of the property. It is made from limestone from the original building. The stains on it are from the damage sustained during the attack. 184 people were killed in the attacks that day.

The kind police officer who told us all about the memorial. He knew every name on the benches, and their ages, and all sorts of information. It was moving to see how affected by the events he was. This was truly one of my favorite sights in DC.

DC Trip: Episode II

The current burial site of George Washington. He wanted a bigger vault for the family so this is the result.

This was the orginal Washington family vault. As seen, if I am not mistaken, in National Treasure II.

A tree on the edge of the Bowling Green. This Tulip Poplar was actually planted by George Washington.

Washington had massive flower gardens, but I absolutely loved the shrubberies. Now I understand what the Knights Who Say Ni were talking about.
(Some of you will get that and some of you won't. If you don't get it then you will be punished by being forced to cut down a tree with a herring!)

Part of the slave's quarters. Either Washington was good to his slaves or he packed them in tight, but I was impressed with the size of the living space compared to what I expected.

DC Trip

I had never been to DC, so Gina and I decided to make a visit over her fall break. The trip came at a perfect time since her dad works in DC right now. That means we had a place to stay, and her mom came, so we had people we loved to see the city with. This picture shows a rare sight in the McGhee family - Gina driving. She likes to sleep and I like to drive, but since the drive to DC took 8 hours I decided to sleep a little on the way.

Our first trip out and about took us to Mt. Vernon (G. Washington's House). The estate still functions as a farm so the grounds were fun to explore. This picture was taken across what they call the Bowling Green, but I call it the ginormous front yard.

As I said the farm was still functioning so I couldn't resist taking a picture of the best side of the sheep. I wanted to see their faces, but they apparently had other plans.

There was a map of the grounds and such. Washington had a unique way of gardening. He had seed beds where he planted crops to let them die and harvest the seeds. He also used natural hedges and trees to fence the different properties. 

The original W's ride.