Friday, August 13, 2010

August 13, 2010: Washington - Trek, White House Garden, Washington Monument, Muybridge Sale, Ripple

Today was actually cool enough that I finally did what I've been wanting to do for weeks - walked downtown! From our apartment to the White House was only 35 minutes! I knew this city wasn't so large, but when you're forced to avoid the heat it's hard to prove it.

First along the route was the Dupont Circle neighbourhood, which has some beautiful residential apartment buildings.

Next I saw the Winged Victory statue (very shiny), then passed by the front of the White House, which I hadn't done before (because it involves a longish walk through a park fully exposed to the sun). As I passed in front I spotted the new kitchen garden on the front lawn which Michelle Obama had spearheaded. It was too far to see much, but it looked pretty lush.

After that I headed across the Mall to the Washington Monument. I've been seeing it from a distance virtually everywhere I've gone, so it was kind of surreal to finally get up close. When you're right next to it, it looks a bit underwhelming - it's like a big, block wall, the colour of stone changes part ways up, and you can't appreciate the tapering shape.

On my way back I stopped in at the Corcoran Gallery bookstore. Ever since going to the Muybridge exhibition I've been thinking about the catalogue - it's the one book I've really been wanting to purchase. And when I checked, it was on sale! Almost two thirds of the price it was originally when the exhibition was still on; waiting really paid off.

In the evening we went for dinner at Ripple again, this time with my friend Delores (who has just gotten into town to do a medical rotation) and her fiance Quoc. It was great to catch up after several years of not having seen each other, and also great to have great food again at Ripple. En route we passed the Kennedy Warren apartments in the Cleveland Park neighbourhood - one of many great Art Deco buildings.

Photos: a dragon ornaments a building in Dupont Circle; Winged Victory; the White House; the White House garden; Washington Monument big, bigger (note the two tones of stone) and biggest; the Kennedy-Warren apartments - look close and notice the elephant ornamentation

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