As a result of Margartia and fizzy wine last night we didn't quite make it up in time to queue for the Washington Monument. Apparently you really needed to be there before 8am to ensure getting a ticket to go up it. I am sure it is an amazing view but neither of as were that keen to get up at 6 for it!
Our day didn't go exactly to plan. We had wanted to go to the national geographic society to see their exhibition, but when we got there it was closed. We had also read that you could get tours of the FBI building which I though would be interesting but when we got there we were told that they stopped doing that after 9/11. We couldn't go into the White House since you had to have booked several months in advance but we ticked the White House box by going to see it. After that we went to the visitor center where you get a video guided tour of the inside and some history about the actual building and it's inhabitants.
Next we headed off the the national archives, which wasn't as good as we had been told. We had expected more original documents but most of them were either photocopies or on a computer. However it was definately worth the visit just to see one particular thing...one of the four original copies of the Magna Carta from 1297. Thanks to the giant queue to see the declaration of independence and the constitution, which were right next to it, there was no one waiting to see the Magna Carta. In fact, we were the only people who were remotely interested. I guess we were the only Brits in the building at that time!
We needed to chillout at this point so went to the Jefferson Memorial to see the cherry blossom. The lake infront of the memorial is surrounded by cherry blossoms which were a gift from Japan 30 years ago. It was heaving and there were only a few places to park our bums. I had thought that the crazyness over these trees was all a bit daft, but when we got there you could see why people come from all over to see them. It was a really really beautiful sight and I think it's time the UK got a bit more chummy with Japan so we get some too!
After this, we made a whistlestop tour of a couple of art galleries before heading to see another Iamx film at the national history museum. By the end of that film it was time to meet Alex and Karyn for our evening picnic, by the Jefferson memorial again, but it was far quieter by this point! Sitting with friends eating delicious food courtesy of Karyn was the perfect way to end our time in Washington.