Washington DC

Immediately after finishing a canoe trip in northern Minnesota, I decided to join my friend Graham on a road trip to Washington DC. Our route took us through the American states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. Should one wish to replicate such a trip, I strongly advise bringing a good friend and some good music – the landscape (as viewed from the motorway) doesn’t offer much entertainment until West Virginia.

Washington DC was on the other hand definitely worth the visit. I can highly recommend the free museums of the Smithsonian Institution. In just two days I visited the National Air and Space Museum, the United States Botanic Garden, the National Building Museum, the Washington Monument, the National Zoological Park, the National Museum of the American Indian, and attended an evening jazz concert in the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden.

The highlight of my visit was certainly the National Air and Space Museum – the number of original items which they house from the space race is astounding. There is something moving about seeing the physical technology which has allowed us fragile humans to travel through space.

Overall I was very impressed with Washington (or at least the core of the city which I saw.) In some ways it felt very European, and far removed from the most common negative stereotypes of America. I would highly recommend a visit to anyone who has the opportunity.

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Welcome to DC! No skyscrapers here.

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Getting around the city easily with Car2Go.

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The National Mall.

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The Apollo 11 command module – the actual one!

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Soyuz reentry capsule with the inscription: MAN INSIDE! HELP! OPEN THE HATCH!

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John Glenn’s glove – the real thing!

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Apollo-Soyuz mock-up.

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Cooperation plaque assembled from two halves in space.

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When did you last use a slide-rule?

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Tidy wiring on Spacelab.

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Fear instilling drones.

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A beautiful video of the sun.

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Various cacti.

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The Capitol Building under repair.

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Architectural models in front of real columns in the building museum.

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Graham strolls towards the Washington Monument.

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Asian small-clawed otters.

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An enormous parrot!

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Beautiful kayak construction.

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A longer view of the boat.

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Newly opened, and brilliantly executed museum.

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Somewhat similar design to Museum of Civilization in Ottawa, Canada.

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Jazz in the Garden – and feet in the pool.

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High cirrus clouds.

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Thanks Washington!

 

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