We had another beautiful day for cruising from Mattawoman Creek Anchorage to Olverson’s Marina.
We arrived just in time for Happy Hour and their Halloween Party with oysters fried, roasted; chicken …
We cast off our lines from DC today headed for Mattawoman Creek Anchorage. We couldn’t have wished for a more perfect day for cruising.
A pretty steeple in Chinatown
Of all the big cities we’ve visited, none has the accidental loveliness, to us, as does D.C. This is a city you can walk across, with wide-open avenues, front porches, old neighborhoods and river views. It was designed by a Parisian, Pierre L’Enfant, and, in some respects, still retains that ‘feeling’. By law, buildings cannot be taller than the width of the street they front, enabling one to always be able to see the sky. There are more than two dozen free museums, so you can absorb culture the way it was meant to be experienced. Take a tour of NPR. Enter the name of a museum and discover lectures, concerts, and classes that they offer. Not publicized so the only way to know what’s happening aside from the obvious is do a few searches and you’ll be quite surprised at what’s available–you just have to hunt.
There is also a walking and biking path that runs along the river, plus a pretty view of Washington.
The Washington Monument? The best thing about it is its starkness. You will see that from afar all over town. In 24 hours, your time is better spent popping into one of the outstanding museums, strolling through a garden and then inspecting one of the many icons that say more about America than a slab of concrete ever will.
Courtyard of Freer/Sackler Gallery
The Capital Crescent Trail connects DC to its Maryland suburbs. The trail is so lushly wooded that it’s easy to forget the hubbub of our capital lying just over the trees. While pedaling along the Potomac River, glancing over my shoulder provided a beautiful view of the iconic Washington Monument which serves as a reminder of the city’s proximity.
Georgetown is a trendy neighborhood and is where the 7 miles of paved trail ends–or begins–just a few blocks from the Kennedy Center and the infamous Watergate complex.
View of the Potomac from the trail
We’ve ridden the trail on weekends and weekdays. As in cruising, we like to leave the weekends for the gainfully employed and then enjoy the week days when bike paths and the waterway is less crowded. The first few miles are nestled within a national park and tucked between the Potomac and the C&O Canal. The towpath parallels the Capital Crescent before veering off on a journey of 185 miles to Cumberland, MD.
It seems there are very few things here without a historical background and this trail is no exception. It traces the route of the former Georgetown Branch of the B&O Railroad which opened in 1910. The train ran for 75 years and carried coal to provide electricity for Georgetown’s streetcars. That coal also powered a steam plant that heated the White House. In preparation for construction of the Lincoln Memorial, these trains also brought in the limestone.
For me, the Dalecarlia Tunnel is the highlight of the trail, especially on a hot day. It’s 340 feet long, built of brick, and on steamy summer days is a total respite to ride through. There are a few cut-outs in the walls for a pedestrian to get out of the way if a train came as they were walking through–from the olden days.
We’re fond of celebrations and it’s fairly easy for us to always find something to celebrate. Today will not be a deviation. There are several things for which to be thankful and the first is that today’s the birthday of our son, Andy. How he got to be 46 years old, I do not know!!! Secondly, today’s the 20th anniversary of our first date. I just can’t believe it’s been that long. Seems like only a year or two. And number 3–we’re so thankful for our 3 months in this marvelous city and our proximity to any and everything we might want to see or do. Along with that is thanksgiving for our health and our ability to walk and cycle to every corner of Washington, DC.
Tomorrow we cast off our lines and begin our southern trek by way of a Calvert’s Marina in Solomon’s, MD, where we’ll tuck in Kindred Spirit III for several months while we explore land based destinations. Saying goodbye is hard to do!
Bill and Laura
A pool that looks as if you could swim right off the edge.
An assortment of interesting characters were present for the festivities
Each night in the huge rock fire pit, marshmallows, a roasting stick, graham crackers, and chocolate were made available to everyone.
A concert during the Asian Culture Awareness Festival. This musician is describing and explaining a 2 string Chinese violin that she demonstrated.
The Asian ensemble performs for us
Another delightful concert in the American Art Museum by a Chinese pianist,
Ukraine violinist, and British cellist
We visited the National Archives to hear director Ken Burns and see clips and comments from his documentary on Vietnam, now known as the American War. Cokie Roberts moderated the discussion with Ken and Lynn Novick about their PBS documentary series, The Vietnam War. The two of them spent 10 years creating this 18 hour documentary still available for viewing.
Everything I do, everywhere I go, and everything I learn in this city just makes me more insatiable as I realize how little I know and how much there is to read and learn. Life’s just not long enough!
We’re on our way to another horizon-broadening experience in Alexandria so more later…as our days here dwindle to a precious few.
Bill and Laura
It was fun to wander the neighborhood and poke around in interesting shops and marvel at many murals in the area.
Our Austin, TX, son, Stephen, came for a long weekend (bike helmet in tow) and every moment was jam-packed being on the move. The Newseum had a special “free” day so we took advantage of that. When there are limitless Smithsonian mu…
The Kennedy Center is a magnificent living memorial to President Kennedy and honors him with endless exhibitions of the performing arts.
We’ve been fortunate to have attended 3 performances during our visit here, the most recent, a celebration of Leonard Bernstein’s 100th birthday, with a NSO tribute.
To enhance that, we visited an exhibition with displays of more than 150 personal artifacts, including personal items, photographs, scores, correspondence, furniture, and films. Among the items is his first piano, the desk on which he composed West Side Story, handwritten score sheets for songs from WWS; his Harvard diploma, and so many more interesting artifacts.
Neoclassical stone arch bridge crosses Potomac near Lincoln Memorial
There’s a clip of a young Asian boy about 6 and his sister, a couple years older, who played for Bernstein—she the piano and he, the cello. The surprise is that it was Yo Yo Ma.
Artists’s displays encircling the smoke stack
Old Town’s City Hall Spire
Love these little Alexandria town houses
Just a bit of trivia to begin the day–did you know that the Smithsonian consists of 19 museums, 9 research centers, 4 cultural centers and the National Zoo? Wish I could say I’ve checked them all off my list but alas…!
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