On the Road Again

by chuckofish

I’m posting this from snowy Washington DC, where my DH and I arrived on Thursday night after a grueling twelve and a half hour car trip that included one and a half hours stopped dead on Interstate 81, while a tractor-trailer crash got cleaned up. 2015-03-05 16.47.17

I guess the driver didn’t heed the ‘Slow down. Fries ahead” sign and took a corner too fast. I sure hope no one was badly hurt. The road conditions were pretty dicey. We put that hour and a half to good use, reading and taking selfies.

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Aren’t we a lovely pair? Things got progressively worse after the long wait. Our windshield wiper fluid froze and so we couldn’t clean off the dirty splash that the trucks kicked up to smear the windshield dangerously. It was like driving through a dense fog. When things got really bad, we had to pull over and splash water from our water bottles onto the windshield to clean it off. You can imagine that as we got closer to DC and it got dark the roads got worse, the traffic slowed down, and the windshield situation became more dire. I made my DH do the hard driving and he was heroic. Suffice it so say that by the time we arrived, we were both shaky and very tired.

But we bounced back on Friday and had a lovely day, he working at the Library of Congress and I touring the snow-covered memorials (followed by hours of grading at the hotel).

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At the Vietnam Wall, I found Harmon Polster, MIA (remains later recovered, now buried in Arlington), whose name I wore for several years in the 1970s on an MIA/KIA bracelet.  Capt. Polster was a pilot, whose plane went down in Laos. I was glad to pay my respects. Nearby are two small statue groups depicting soldiers of the Vietnam War and the nurses, who served from WWII to Vietnam.

DSC00887 DSC00900I thought the snow made them look even sadder.

I also visited the Korean War memorial, which is close by and very cool.

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Like the Vietnam Memorial, this one had a reflecting wall, but instead of names, it had etched portraits. Here’s my arty picture of it, in which you see the reflection of visitors looking at the above statues and the statues themselves all superimposed on the ghostly wall etchings.

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Of course, no trip to the Mall would be complete without a visit to see the formidable Abraham Lincoln. I found it all quite moving, albeit chilly. And my timing was perfect, since the first busloads of school children arrived just as I was getting ready to leave.

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Later that afternoon the DH and I met up with our son, James, who gave us a tour of the MPAA (Motion Picture Association of America), where he works as the Assistant to the Chef. It’s a nice place. This is the lounge area, where they put on many receptions,

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and this is the dining room, complete with hand painted murals and trompe l’oeil architectural details.

DSC00904Afterwards we repaired to a nearby restaurant/bar, where we had a lovely time catching up on gossip and filling up on delicious food. Having subsisted on granola bars and free hotel breakfast (pretty yucky) since our arrival in town, Duncan and I were hungry!

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Today, while Duncan is at his conference, James and I will meet up with my niece, Susie, and her beau, Nate, for lunch, after which I hope to get to at least one of the Smithsonians. Then it’s to James’s apartment for a home-cooked meal. Stay tuned for more pictures and updates — if not tomorrow, then next week.  Here’s hoping the trip back is uneventful!

Have a wonderful weekend!