Washington D.C.

Earlier this week, I took a short trip to Washington D.C. for a series of business meetings. We took the Amtrak train from New Haven to Union Station.  The trip there was on the normal regional train and the trip back was on the Acela Express high speed train. The trip there was actually smoother. The Acela is quicker, but gives a rougher ride. In D.C., we got around on the Metro, which was efficient. I love cities because the mass transit offers so many more alternatives. 

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Our small group had the opportunity to walk all over downtown D.C. We got to take in the full pre-inaugural festivities. This included the construction of temporary structures such as bleachers, platforms, stages, security towers, and little buildings. Some of this stuff looked seriously permanent. Big money is obviously being spent on the party. This added stuff gave the Mall and other familiar landmarks a unique look. Many of the usual views were obstructed. We came across our share of blocked off streets, and saw thousands…literally thousands…of port-o-potties. 

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We got to see the usual assortment of strikes and political protests. We visited an awesome museum, called the Newseum. That was a highlight for me and probably the best museum I’ve ever seen. It was a photo-journalist’s dream. The 9/11 Gallery was particular moving. The huge piece of the Berlin Wall, complete with guard tower, was cool. The G-Men exhibit was interesting, including the Unabomber’s cabin. However, my favorite section was the entire history of Pulitzer Prize winning photos. Hearing some of the stories behind the famous shots was sweet.

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We took the standard tour of the US Capitol and got to see the thousands of folding chairs set up for the big day. 

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I got to run two mornings and it was neat to see the monuments at dawn with the full moon still high in the sky. All in all, it was an excellent trip to our nation’s capital.

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