Took the train from Harrisburg to Union Station in DC and arrived about 6:00 and was met by my friend Angie. Decided to go get something to eat in Bethesda. We went to a Spanish restaurant and had tapas. Soooo good. Had planned to go to see Young Victoria, but I was really wiped out so went to Angie’s and to bed.
Monday morning we got up, had breakfast and got ready for the day. Angie had to work but she dropped me at the Metro and I took it into DC and the Smithsonian. The day was beautiful! Not too cool and not too warm. I wondered on the mall for a bit and took pictures, saw the Pres’s helicopter flying in…at least I think it was his. First stop was the history museum. This was the first time I had been back since they reopened. I was disappointed. It seemed sterile, bathroom doors were stainless steel. There are three floors of galleries but only two gallery spaces per floor. It seemed that some of the exhibits really didn’t relate to history, let alone American history, like the semi-conductor exhibit and the science experiment lab. The gift shops were very touristy and they book selection was seriously reduced. I guess they are trying to appear less stuffy. But I didn’t like it as much as before.
I then went to the Freer. I’m not that much into Asian art but it was a nice visit. There was a Whistler exhibit as well, which was nice. The Indian art was beautiful and the Peacock room…wow! I wanted to visit the portrait gallery but just didn’t have time. I managed to get the castle, which includes pieces from the different museums.
I met up with Ang at her store about 4:30 and we went back to Bethesda for dinner and to see the movie. First stop though a specialty chocolate shop. Then to a French restaurant for dinner, very good. Young Victoria was a good movie, not great, but visually a beautiful film and the costumes were great!
Tuesday was a down day. We got out late, about 12:00 and had lunch at a Belgian restaurant. Great crepe Suzette. Angie saved the best for last, a huge discount bookstore. Bought a few and then to Starbucks for coffee before I had to get to the airport.
The flight home was uneventful. From BWI to Houston I had the whole row to myself and then to Austin only one other person. Not first class, but still plenty of room to stretch out.
I really love this trip each year! Can’t wait for 2011!