|Some outfit or other of George Washington's. With|
bonus Kat in the background playing with interactives.
The section on the Civil War was interesting too, although there was barely any mention of the causes behind the war. From memory, there was a taxidermied horse there. And we learnt that women who enlisted as nurses had to be "plain and dress simply". Then...THEN. We reached the World War II gallery. There, we were greeted by this sign.
After lunch, we discovered an exhibit about pirates, which made us both much happier. This was followed by a trip to the transportation gallery, but I think by that point we were both experiencing museum fatigue. So pretty much all I remember about it is that there was a giant train, and a dog wearing goggles (Work Wife - this one's especially for you):
From there, we wandered over to the National Portrait Gallery. On the way, we went past the Archives:
The inscription along the top reads as follows:
"The glory and romance of our history are here preserved in the chronicles of those who conceived and builded the structure of our nation."
Really, America? BUILDED?????? *cringe*
We also walked past the FBI Building. Sadly, Seeley Booth wasn't there (sorry, Sara!)... Neither was Fox Mulder. 28 year old Kirsti wasn't as disappointed about that as 14 year old Kirsti would have been. Eventually we made it to the Portrait Gallery. I was rather taken with this bust of Andrew Jackson. He's Kat's favourite president because he was basically batshit crazy, and still wound up with his face on the $20 bill.
I also liked this bust. I can't remember who it's of, but he seems rather surprised that he had a bust made of him!
Eventually, we exhausted the possibilities in the early American section, and moved on to the portraits of presidents. On the way up the stairs, a slightly crazy man accosted us:
Slightly crazy man: Is this the way to the presidential portraits??
Kat: That's what the sign says...
Slightly crazy man: Oh, I'm just so excited! I'm like a kid in a candy shop!! [runs off]
Me: O...kay then...
We hung back to
avoid the crazy look at some kind of dollhouse thing. By the time we got into the gallery, he was snapping photos of one of Washington's portraits from every angle. When I next saw him, he was taking a self portrait in front of this painting of Lincoln.
Sadly, he wasn't doing the same pose. Because that would have been awesome. We spent a large chunk of time being on the opposite side of the gallery from him, just in case he asked us to take his picture in front of a presidential portrait. The last we saw of him, he set his camera on top of a showcase on auto-timer, ran across the gallery to stand in front of a portrait of...I can't remember who, but I'm pretty sure it was one of the random presidents from the 70s. Gerald Ford, maybe...and then got yelled at by a security guard for leaving his property unattended AND on top of a showcase.
After the self portrait taking weirdo had gone, we quickly tired of the presidents and headed over to the 20th century section, figuring we stood a chance of actually knowing who some of the people were there. Sadly, I neglected to take a photo of the portrait of that most American of 20th century figures - WINSTON CHURCHILL. Okay, so it was only there because it was a study for a painting of FDR, Churchill and Stalin signing the something-or-other treaty (I think. Possibly something to do with the Yalta Conference...). But they still have a portrait of Churchill in the section of famous 20th century Americans... #weird
Shortly thereafter, we got bored of mocking the art and figured it was time for happy hour. We headed to Chinatown in the hopes of finding a bar and then somewhere for dinner later on. Instead, we wound up at an Irish pub. In Chinatown. Because we're spontaneous and non-conformist like that! When they brought us a menu, we decided that it couldn't hurt to have a pre-dinner snack, which somehow turned into us being too lazy to find anywhere else to eat and ordering like three different entrees (in the normal context, not the bizarre American context). They were delicious.
Next up, a millionty monuments, the non-Reflecting Pool, and we discover that walking around in the sun all day is a very warm experience. Oh, and cocktails.