Feel like I should start with an apology for the lack of blog posts. The internet in Washington was even worse than the internet in Florida, in that it would not even load my app to post properly.
So it was either write and save a flurry of posts for each day or do a big one for the whole of Washington. As you can probs tell I’m going with the big one. This might turn into a bit of a jumble with the chronology but please just bare with me and I’ll make sure there are pictures to stop it being too prose dense. There’s also an updated hit list at the end of the post again as we managed to knock off a few more items.
Speaking of flurries I’m squeezing in a little para about the weather right here. We went from shorts weather to scarves weather. It snowed our first night in Washington and was freezing temps for the entire stay there.
So let’s go back in time to the day we arrived in Washington. The bus journey was split over a couple of buses, which is fine we’ve had plenty of changes along the way. However, the first bus was delayed and daylight savings changed while we were on it, so we missed the second bus. Instead of spending the afternoon exploring Washington we ended up waiting for six hours in a bus station. I don’t know if it’s just because they’re cheap or because they don’t want people hanging around in them (probs a bit of both) but the chairs in the bus stations are some of the most uncomfortable things my butt has ever touched. And sitting on them for six hours is not fun.
But as you can probs tell we made it to Washington. While we were there we did all the touristy things:
Went and stood outside the White House. And did the visitors centre for it which was actually really interesting. Full of lots of facts.
We also visited the Capitol building, the Supreme Court, and the national archives. The archives have the Bill of Rights, Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. It also had loads of interesting letters, like this little boy who wrote to Regan for federal funds to clean his room because his mum called it a disaster zone.
The buildings in Washington are all so grand. The Library of Congress was one of the most impressive buildings (although I’m not sure if that’s my love of libraries in general giving me a biased view). All the detail on the walls and ceilings were incredible.
The Thomas Jefferson Library in the building was also incredibly interesting; all those books that he used. Also weird that a few of them I had actually read.
There are a lot of memorials in Washington, and we visited most of them. The Lincoln memorial, the Washington memorial, the Jefferson memorial, the World War Two memorial and the Vietnam memorial.
We also went to Arlington National Cemetery. I know that I tend to waffle about the places we go but I don’t think I have the right phrases to sum up the impact of the place. We obviously visited the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and JFK’s grave, both of which were equally as impressive though totally different to each other. I think the part that had the most influence on me though was the Women’s Memorial. In particular reading about the wars from their perspective.
And of course we did a lot of the Smithsonian museums! My favourite of which was the National Postal Museum. I got to start a stamp collection, learn about the post police investigations and read a lot of the #postsecrets people sent in.
As I mentioned earlier we also managed to get a few things on the hit list. One of which was to visit a Walmart. The store is like some super version of Tesco, me and V just wandered round in awe and left with some garlic bread and glue for my diary stickings.
The other major thing that we’ve been trying to get done for ages is cheesecake at the Cheesecake Factory. The day we walked out to Arlington was the coldest day we had in snowy Washington. And it was also one of the longest walks we had which made it seem even colder. It was the level of cold that made me shiver uncontrollably, in a teeth chattering, can’t get warm way. Anyways after all the cold we decided we deserved a treat and headed over to the Cheesecake Factory for lots of warm food followed by cheesecake, which was delicious! So worthy of being on the hit list.
Anyways that’s it for Washington. My first New York blog will be up shortly but until then enjoy the hit list update.
Here’s the updated hit list:
* Talk to an American in an American accent – see Houston hitlist update. I’m pretty fluent in the valley girl accent.
* Walk down the Vegas stripe – tick ✔️✔️
* Buy a Disney snow globe -not done yet as the one I wanted was huge and difficult to get home in a rucksack, but Disney ship so will be buying once I hit English soil!
* Wear Minnie Mouse ears for 24 hours 🐭 – done! And I only looked semiweird in them on the bus
* The Statue of Liberty 🗽
* Eat American smores (we made our own on list year’s camping adventure) – we have had pop tarts in smores flavour but are keeping our eyes open for the real deal
* Eat the state food in each state we stay – so far we’ve managed this! Apart from Washington as it’s not actually a state but is federal ground so doesn’t have one.
* Ride a horse 🐎 – done! (Sort of we rode a carousel horse, so it was a horse but I won’t tick it on my year’s hit list.)
* Line dancing 👯 – I’ve danced my way around a Houston backyard.
* Eat cheesecake at the Cheesecake Factory – yep and it was so good!
* Have pie and coffee in a dinner (full disclosure I do not drink coffee so this will be pie, a sip of coffee then a gallon of tea) ☕️ – apparently if you add salt to coffee it takes the bitter taste away so might try this with actual coffee
* Roller skate around Somewhere – still on the lookout for a place to skate, fingers crossed for Central Park
* Bet in Vegas – I’ve officially placed a bet
* Mardi Gras in New Orleans – SO COOL!!!! (See the Nola post for all the deets.)
* Visit a Hard Rock Cafe – even have the tee shirt to prove it
* Bungee jumping – I’ve ziplined but yet to find a bungee jump
* Washington and Lincoln memorials – done and done
* Buy some American uni merchandise
* Take a photo at the Brooklyn Bridge 📷
* Visit Walmart – yep! This store is ridiculous, like a Tesco but more extreme
* The Grand Canyon – yes and it is incredible
* A ghost tour 👻– yep, walked round New Orleans listening to a guy tell us all about the spooks there.
* Watch some kind of sports game
* See the Bellagio fountain – such a cool fountain show, and we did a little oceans 11 photo shoot
* Breakfast at Tiffany’s
* Supersize a macdonalds 🍟🍔 (me and V will be sharing this)
* Spend an afternoon in Barnes and a noble
* Watch a show – we went and saw Cirque Du Soleil while in Florida so this one can officially be crossed off.
* Photo at the Vegas sign – we didn’t make it out to the one on the strip because it was roasting hot. But we did do it at the downtown sign in Fremont.
* Empire state building
* People watch in Grand Central
* Central Park 🌳🌳
* Find a LA cap like Hils in Cinderella Story – as I’ve spammed everywhere with pictures of this you probs all know about this one already.
* Alcatraz – I have been to the rock
* Ride a cable car in San Fransisco 🚃 – tick! ✔️✔️
* Visit the 9/11 memorial
* Visit the Golden Gate Bridge 🌉 – It’s like one of the thing every tourist does but there’ s a reason for that; the views are spectacular!
* New York public library
* M and M world (chocolate heaven!! 🍫) – been there and made some friends
* NASA space centre 🚀 – we had lift off
* The French Quarter in New Orleans – even had a little nap in Jackson Square
* Ride the Hogwarts Express 🚂 – yes and it was just as incredible as expected
* The Smithsonian – as you can tell from earlier on in the post we did several of their museums
* Walk the National Mall in Washington – we’ve walked this several times on our trips round Washington
* Niagra Falls
* CN Tower