Washington – Absolutely Expected! Completely Unexpected!

When anyone mentions Washington DC, we all get the visual of the White House glowing in all its glory in the bright sunlight.. it’s almost instantaneous. And having watched every American crime series and reading American literature and stories I was really looking forward to DC. It was the only city where I wanted to see the maximum number of places… and I had just one full day. But above all, unlike most… Washington for me was all about Forrest Gump and all its romance. I mean who can forget how Jenny screams out to him at the Memorial and runs through the lake.

I landed in DC early evening and reached the house I was going to live in by about 6pm. I was greeted and welcomed by an elderly gentlemen and the house was absolutely perfect. It was almost a mansion and had 3 more rooms to rent out and the house was fully booked. Each room was well lit with white upholstery, a homely feel and an air of comfort. Joe, my landlord gave me a grand tour and even helped me with my bags till the first floor which he didn’t need to nor would I have expected considering his age. I settled-in in a matter of moments. I had been very proper with my packing and would always keep clothes for laundry at the bottom of my suitcase and the clothes I’d need for that city right on top. automaty online gra I was in US for 3 weeks and did all sorts of weathers and yet had managed everything in one decent sized suitcase.

World War II Memorial

World War II Memorial

Leslie, Joe’s very sharp and smart wife came in shortly and was the best person evvvver to ask what I could do for the evening? She had an air of confidence and sophistication that just could not be ignored. The pair had diligently laid out brochures of all kinds for their guests to be able to plan exactly what they wanted. I figured where to go and how to get there easily for the next day and then asked her what could I do on my first night in DC… and she.. with an air of sexiness said.. “If it were me, I’d get into something pretty and get to the W Hotel, get to the top floor bar and just see the entire city lit up”. I noticed I was smiling just listening to her and in my head I had already reached there.. so I did exactly that. Got dressed and reached the W Hotel. Not knowing what exactly to expect made my first view of the view even more breath-taking. The terrace had the most amazing view of the White House and the monument. totolotek zakłady bukmacherskie oferta

I made some lovely conversations there with some Indians and other visitors, but one person stood out… Special Agent Vic from Homeland Security. It was purely cheap thrills to be in America’s Capital and running into someone from Homeland Security as I looked upon the White House from the Terrace Restaurant. He was a lovely man and of-course didn’t share anything about his work with me.

The next day I got up well rested and with my spirits super excited about seeing all the places I had only seen on TV. The weather had been gorgeous and sunny. The bus tours of DC are probably the most efficient and cover the entire city. A good tip again is to wear very very comfy shoes here… There’s a lot of walking up stairs and dashing to and fro from the designated bus stops.

I started with the World War II Memorial. darmowe gry hazardowe bez rejestracji It was perfect with 56 granite pillars in a semi circle with a fountain in the middle. Pillars have the names of all states of the US and a wall which holds 4048 gold stars each representing 100 Americans who lost lives or remain missing and a quote reading “Here we mark the price of freedom”. I can’t really explain how I felt exactly.. the place was very peaceful and yet even though I obviously didn’t know anyone nor was it my country but I felt a deep sense of sadness.. just sadness.. how many lives had been lost.. families destroyed because of these wars… How and when did lands and religions become more important than humanity. I couldn’t imagine losing a family member even to old age and then there were these wars and acts of terrorism that had been destroying humanity and ruining families forever. People had lost family members in moments… just like that.. It felt so depressing and well… unnatural in every way.

And yet what a thoughtful way of giving the soldiers this honour.

The Reflecting Lake at the Lincoln Memorial

The Reflecting Lake at the Lincoln Memorial

My heart was a bowl of many mixed emotions, and the next few hours had to be crisp, attentive and focussed cause I had so many places to ‘hit and run’ and so will the next few paragraphs.
My next stop was the much awaited Lincoln Memorial.. iconic for its history and its importance in movies like Forrest Gump and Planet of the Apes. With the entire structure basking in the sun in all its glory… the Reflecting Pool in-front and the clear view of the monument… makes one just smile. Here I was.. standing where Abraham Lincoln was being enshrined, where Martin Luther King gave his “I have a dream” speech. It’s a good idea to just sit here and breathe it all in.

I didn’t have time to see all the spots so had been selective and very time managed. But then, the open top bus made a stop in-front of the Spy Museum.. and I sat still contemplating whether I should.. could miss this bit and the answer was a clear NO. I’ve been such a Bond movies freak… so I just jumped right out and went for it. Ok.. so I’ll be honest.. I was hoping to see a lot of stuff on James Bond… but somehow they had a section for only the Bond Villains.. little let down! There is a segment where they ask you to take up a role play and try to make you feel like a spy with a cover name and stuff but… ummmm I wasn’t too impressed. And was a bit expensive too.

United States Capitol

United States Capitol

Then I went on to the United States Capitol, the seat of the US Congress. Again an absolutely gorgeous structure with the big dome and everything white. . Ofcourse it had crazy security all over but I was honestly tired and though there is a walking path all around it and everyone was only on the path I couldn’t understand how and why were people not sprawled all over the absolutely gorgeous lawns all around. I was just about to walk nonchalantly but it suddenly occurred to me what if they saw it as a crime or something and arrested me … so I took some steps back and walked up to the guards and just sweetly asked.. “umm .. will be ok if I cut through the grass for a better view?” They looked me up and down and said “Sure, just make sure you don’t go too close to the bushes, they are loaded with motion sensors and alarms” GULLLP! I said thank you and obviously didn’t walk on the grass.

Next stop was the Smithsonian and my main focus was the Air and Space Museum and it was every bit as amazing as every article claims. There were components of space shuttles, explanations on their working, all the success and failure stories, aircrafts of every generation hanging from the ceilings with stories about their inventions and advancements. I was absolutely wowed by everything there.

Air and Space Museum

Air and Space Museum

I must mention that in the hop-on hop-off buses you don’t always travel with the same set of people but then there are chances that you see someone who was with you in the previous trip through the day and familiarity comes easy with a smile and conversations flow in with suggestions and plans. I made friends with a group of 8 African American women of all ages who were from Tennessee and my god what energy levels they had.. absolute fun women. All sisters with their kids.
Another interesting spot is the Lock Keepers House. We crossed it a few times and I don’t quite know the history but it was a stone built hut in almost the middle of all these new age buildings and structures. But it was a pretty site.

The Lock Keeper's House

The Lock Keeper’s House

The last stop was ofcourse the White House. Took some pictures and ofcourse I tried to look at every window hoping I’d probably see President Obama.. N no I wasn’t that lucky! As I walked out to take a seat on a bench next to a lake right outside and just sat staring at the fountain a young boy in a suit came to share my bench, we both smiled and nodded. Andy Brown had just joined as staff in the White House and was an absolutely cute and adorable company. So we sat for about five minutes, I praised him for what he was doing, he praised me for what I was doing and both wished each other success and just like that became friends.

The White House

The White House

So I had planned that since I was so tired, I’d go home, rest for a while and then head towards Georgetown for an early dinner and be home as soon and get a good night’s sleep before my early morning flight the next day. I had no idea what was about to take me by storm. So the cab driver who drove me home that particular day was particularly peculiar. I had got a call from my love while in his cab and after over-hearing my love talks.. he totally abruptly asked.. “You Married” … I said “umm.. Yes… why?” hesitatingly.

To which he said in the most animated way.. “My wife never speaks to me like that.. she horrible.. always screaming screaming…” and went on and on and on… “She remember old fight and bring up after months.. I no even remember…I love her but oh my god hate living with her… she never talk sweet sweet….” and on and on… And then just suddenly asked me.. “You live here? Or visiting? Wait… you looking like tourist.. Ya?” and I think I just nodded… he just kept talking.. and then asked “So you go party party at night? Where you go?”

I till date don’t know why I immediately blurted “Georgetown”.. I mean who was he.. I didn’t even know him but he spoke to me so easily all about his life that I almost felt like I must know him… and he immediately said “Oh Georgetown?? No Georgetown… Georgetown is like.. how you say.. umm it is very white… all rich rich … you wanna see REAL DC?? You no go Georgetown… You go Adam’s Morgan.. that is real DC… real underbelly”.

Madam's Organ at Adam's Morgan

Madam’s Organ at Adam’s Morgan

He even gave me directions and bus numbers to get there and everything… Just like that.. a complete stranger had planned my evening. I walked to my room with a smile and in awe of this peculiar character who had met me.. praised me.. opened his life to me.. and also known what I may like while I had probably just spoken seven words to him.

Adam’s Morgan… Oh my God… Adam’s Morgan.. Everything had been so white and prim and manicured and and… and NICE the whole day that nothing could have prepared me for Adam’s Morgan. I had never heard of it but even if I had… nothing could have described the life.. the energy… the vivacity of Adam’s Morgan. It was a street full of options.. and the interesting part was.. my options were not restaurants or cuisines… they seemed to be.. Countries! Yes.. Countries… It was like the funnest UN area.. There was Brazilian, French, African, Mexican, Middle Eastern, Ethiopian, Indian… and no they were not just the cuisine but looked like they all were carrying a bit of the best of their countries… the layouts.. the interior designs… the fragrance of the foods… and last but not the least… the music… oh my god the music…

The Adam's Morgan Street

The Adam’s Morgan Street

Let me try and make you walk my shoes… imagine a small street and you walk past a quaint looking French restaurant with a little seating on the outside with the fragrance of fresh breads and cheese lingering in the air and some classic French music playing and you take a peep inside and in an instant you are there… on some street in Paris on a cool romantic night.. and you smile to yourself blissfully. And you carry on walking and a few steps further, you feel a sort of thumping in the ground below you and suddenly there is an African live band playing some reggae tunes and smiling at you while you walk past them and the air gets loaded with the smell of heavy oils and spices and you are already in Africa.. Oh the bliss.. the madness of Adam’s Morgan! Just a street with no barriers and love for only fun, food and music. There was no way I wasn’t going to enjoy as much of this street as I possibly could.. So decided to go restaurant hopping and soon made friends with a bunch of girls who were doing the exact same thing as me and asked me to join them. Soon we girls were trying to get as much of the street as we possibly could.. Our last stop was the landmark of the street named “Madame’s Organ” and had three floors of music.. of all kinds and graffitis all over the walls. I guess the best way to sum it is that… This street was a traveller’s haven!

DC was everything I expected it to be but more importantly it was everything I never expected it to be… Another wonderful lesson learnt.. Talk to cabbies and expect the unexpected!

Washington!

Washington!

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