As I have blogged about before, the Hoos and I went to college in DC - we met there almost 15 years ago, and we are quite nostalgic about the place. It really is a great city with lots to see and do and we did a lot of seeing and doing while there.
We stayed at an Embassy Suites in Crystal City, potentially the highlight of the trip for the little ladies. They honestly thought they owned the joint and would run, laughing and whooping, from our room to the elevator, racing to "hit the button!" They also enjoyed swimming in the hotel's indoor pool and taking its shuttle to the Pentagon City mall. At the end of the trip AK almost refused to get into our car to go home, insisting instead on taking the "bus."
A quick rundown on some of our activities:
- The National Zoo with our friends from college and their adorable little boy. LP was in rare form, acting as a tour guide and in general talking every one's ear off. We got to see giant tortoise love, which was actually kind of gross. The kids didn't know what was going on and LP wanted to know if "the top turtle was going to turn the bottom turtle into a pancake tortoise."
- The Natural History museum with a high school friend and her two precious daughters. I guess it doesn't count as rare form if LP was once again a tour guide talking every one's ear off. The kids enjoyed riding the carousel on the National Mall and putting their feet in the fountain in the National Gallery sculpture garden. It was hot and my poor friend and her husband were toting around their 5-month old in a Bjorn in the 85 degree heat. Total troopers.
- The girls' first Metro ride. They loved it! LP really wanted to take the train underground and AK loves riding the escalator, so to them this was the best of all worlds. And at one point LP asked if she could stand next to her "new friend" and got up and held one my best friends since childhood's hand. Totally sweet.
- A nighttime monument tour. After dinner on Sunday night we took a trip into "the city". We ended up with a great parking spot right near the Hoos' and my favorite hidden treasure, the Albert Einstein statue. We enjoyed Albert and the Lincoln. It was fun trying to explain to LP that the steps in front of the reflecting pool is where "Daddy asked Mommy to marry him," or, as the Hoos puts it, doomsday (only kidding!).
- Quick stop at our old stomping grounds. LP really wanted to get a Washington t-shirt. Instead of getting the usual inexpensive tourist shirts (4/$10) we decided to instead spend $30 to get them GW shirts. Think of it as our alumni contribution. Despite the fact that the campus has changed significantly since we graduated 12 years ago, it brought back nice memories and we totally felt like old fogies explaining to the kids, "And this is where we used to study...And Daddy lived here for 3 years....And Mommy lived here for one semester...And we used to eat lunch here every day..."
The trip was a great combination of old and new memories. LP didn't want to come home and tried to leave some toys in the car for "our next vacation." It can't come soon enough for any of us.