Monday, May 28, 2012

Kids, Rolling Thunder and Being Tourists

Sunday morning we headed for Washington D.C. in the rental car to pick up Mackenzie and Matt at their hotel.  It’s great to see them again!  Washington D.C. was abuzz with activity this Memorial Day Weekend, and the crowds were large everywhere we went. Most of today’s photo are courtesy of Mackenzie; Bob was feeling lazy.

Our first stop was the Washington Monument . . .


followed by the Lincoln Memorial.


Everywhere we went, we were surrounded by crowds of aging bikers in their leathers and do-rags, participants in an annual Veterans’ parade called “Rolling Thunder”. We were told there were 25,000 of them participating in a parade around town for 4 hours today, and we got caught in traffic both coming into and leaving the city later in the day. They were polite, respectful and friendly to the rest of the crowd and vice versa.


Next up: the Vietnam War Memorial, which had many, many flowers laid at the base of the Wall in honor of the holiday.


A Rolling Thunder participant.


We spent a couple of hours inside the powerful (and depressing) Holocaust Museum, which does an extremely effective job of telling the story of how this horrible historical event came to occur, and both individual and collective stories of the impact on people’s lives, including perpetrators, victims and heroes.


In celebration of Matt’s 27th birthday (a week late), we had dinner at the Dock Street Bar and Grill, which turned out to be more bar than grill, but we had a good meal and returned for another evening on our sundeck with a glass of wine and again enjoyed the live music at the nearby dockside restaurant/bar. We stayed up REALLY late for Bob and Cathryn:  11:00 p.m.


Sunday morning we returned downtown and took Mackenzie and Matt on an abbreviated tour of the Naval Academy with which they seemed impressed. One whole street is lined with houses like the one below, senior officers’ quarters, and today all the sidewalks were lined with flags.


Main Street in downtown Annapolis is a brick-paved two-lane roadway lined with busy shops and restaurants.


We wandered through the St. John’s College pretty campus for a few minutes, founded in 1696 as King William’s School, and later renamed St. John’s College, now with two campuses, the second in Santa Fe, New Mexico.  Its’ library below was actually built in 1634 before the school was established.  An interesting aside:  while at the Naval Academy we overheard a Midshipman telling his family about the “Johnnies”  who go to this college where they have no majors and no grades! We surmise there may be a bit of a culture clash between the “hippies” at St John’s and the “straights” at the Academy.


Our last stop in the city was a quick look at the Maryland State House, the capitol building, which also served as the first capitol of our nation for one year before Washington D.C. was established as the permanent capitol.


Finally we had a late lunch at a harbor-side restaurant with loads of boat activity nearby. Three of us ate soft-shell crab sandwiches and thought they were delicious.


Mackenzie and Matt seem happy to be on vacation, at least for this 3-day weekend.  Starting tomorrow they both have to work!  More on that later.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dear Olalla Bay, It was nice to see your comments on your weekend in DC. As one of the Participants of Sunday's Rolling Thunder Ride it feels great that we are referred to as respectful as all too often we are stigmatized by the "Biker" stereotype. One correction on the "25,000" attendees it was actually closer to 800,000 from what i have read. And believe it or not approximately 80% of those riders are veterans.