Sunday, July 12, 2015

All around the town

East Coast Driving trip - Day 3

We all slept like rocks... yay!!
That was wonderful.

So excited for the zoo and our first day in DC

Our plan today was to start at the National Zoo, then do a Hop on/Hop off style tour of the all the tourist stuff. Hopefully having time to walk through two of the Smithsonian Museums.

With a little research we decided the most efficient way to do this involved several different transportation options, starting with a taxi to the zoo.
The zoo grounds open before the buildings, so we kind of did the zoo in reverse, ending with the visitors' center.... silly us, but it worked.

We decided to eat at one of the Smithsonians for lunch, so we hit the Metro to Union Station to grab our hop on/off tour bus, or I should say "Trolley" - it was a modified bus, to look more like a trolley, but it was a bus ;)

This plan worked well for us. The kids enjoyed the Metro ride a lot, and we were able to get through half of the tour before we "hopped off" at the Museum of Natural History.
Lunch was pretty easy at the counter service style cafe they had. And we really enjoyed the exhibits.

First ride on the Metro
Yup, Scaffolding on the dome... We are told it will be ready for the next inauguration
Supreme Court
The Elephant's name is Henry... and he is undergoing some refurbishment... thus the walls
This is funny to me :)

After the Natural History fun, we planned to "Hop On" the next Trolley.... but it took a bit longer than we hoped. They say, the Trolley comes by every 30 mins. And what was the likelihood that we just missed it?
Apparently - HIGH... 25 minutes later, our Trolley pulled up. We managed to be the first in line... but no luck.
They only had room for 3... and the driver wouldn't allow us to have the youngest on a lap :(
He promised the next shuttle was "Just behind" him.

It was closer to us than he had been originally, but it was still about 10 mins out. And it only had 3 spots left - UMMMM?? However this driver was ok with a kiddo on the lap.
So we got on board. Then we had another hurdle. None of the seats were together. Oh bother.
Honestly, had our son known this going in, he might (might) have been able to muddle through, sitting next to the cute 20 something year old girl. [Editor's note: Give him a few years...] But sitting on his own.. two rows ahead of me and one row behind dad, wasn't ok. He fell apart.
He was barely keeping it together with the previous wait and then the full bus. So, his reaction wasn't a surprise to us. What was a surprise, was the kindness of a couple to give hubby and the boy their row. They sat apart and let my guys settle in - I would have hugged the women if I could have. I don't lean too heavily on the "he is Autistic" excuse, when we are out and about. But on an occasion such as this, I think I would have pulled it out. Anyway - a huge THANK YOU, to that kind couple.

So we were off to finish the tour where we left off and ride on over to the Air and Space Museum.
I think the kids enjoyed Air and Space more than Natural History. Both museums are beautiful, full of great exhibits, many of them hands-on. So we had some fun, and hopefully (fingers crossed) learned a little something, maybe?

This took us to about 5:30. And now we are all tired... 10K+ steps on our fitbits, and hungry. So we taxi'd back to the hotel. Well worth it.

I am hopeful we will all sleep well tonight.

Miles today: 0 (well, no driving miles... but a few walking ones)
Miles total: 245
States Total: 3

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