18th July 2012
Washington: Hilton Garden Inn. Good night's sleep for me but Luke was still exhausted. Attempted to make coffee for breakfast but all the water fell straight throught the machine. We told reception, the guy who was 7 foot tall gave us a free breakfast each. NICE.
After much indecision as to whether we should stay another night we set off into the blistering heat (38 degrees) and took the Metro to the National Air and Space museum. Lots of food trucks lined up nearby but not many customers, too hot.
The museum is free and fabulous. You walk into the foyer and there it is, the Apollo 11 command module (capsule), the real thing that splashed back to earth after they landed on the moon. The museum is chockers with amazing space relics like the lunar module, space suits, satellites, a replica of the Hubble Telescope, Sputnick, nuclear missiles plus the Spirit of St Louis and the original Wright Brothers aircraft.
An army band gave a free concert at midday so we had the pleasure at looking at the Hubble and its images to glorious string classical music. Looked at the docked Apollo and Soyuz spacecraft while they played on.
Also saw a moon buggy and all the various bits and pieces that went on the Apollo missions including Old Spice!
I just adored the whole thing. I felt like that little kid who saw pictures of Mars in 1977 and became entranced with space. And I kept thinking of this, which used to play on the ABC as a filler before the Goodies:
We were both pretty exhausted when we left and headed off to the Natural History museum. There was lightning and thunder in the distance. Went through a sculpture garden before it started to rain. Got into the museum just as the storm broke. Looked at dinosaurs, stuffed things, the Hope Diamond, lots of gems and an exhibited on the Titanoboa, largest snake ever.
After that we dragged ourselves up a few blocks until we found a nice French restaurant, had a kir, foie gras, French Onion soup, Luke had some really nice lamb brains with lemon caper butter. Mmm.
Got back to the hotel, Luke went straight to sleep. I've been on the PC, uploading pics and trying to get us a room for Friday.