Sunday, April 3, 2011

Cherry Blossoms

One of the best and worst times to live in the Washington, DC area is cherry blossom time.  The thousands of trees gifted to the city from Japan frame the tidal basin, the monuments, and motivate hoards of tourists to invade the city.  Washington, DC is a beautiful city anytime of year, but those pinkish white blossoms add a special touch to the landscape.  Most of the time, I neglect to truly appreciate all that Washington, DC is and what it has to offer because I take for granted the fact that I live here and can go into the city anytime.  This year, I resolved to be a tourist in my own city and experience the city as if I had traveled from afar and would not have the nation's capital readily available to me.  Alas, a trip to see the cherry blossoms was in order!

Annie and I stopped by Panera to grab some food to enjoy a picnic down at the Jefferson Memorial.  When Annie first moved to the DC area (I LOVE that she is here!), we would go down to the Jefferson Memorial and have the most wonderful, thought provoking conversations about life.  Yes, it's weird to have such deep convos in a public place while swarms of tourists try to capture that Kodak moment, but whatever, that's us! A picnic at the Jefferson while enjoying the cherry blossoms seemed like a wonderful way to spend a Sunday afternoon.

Tourists and traffic almost derailed our plans.  I am used to living close to a big city, but I have truly never seen as many people as there were down there today.  People seem to think they are above the law when they are a tourist and they refuse to obey any traffic laws.  Driving around the city was similar to playing a video game.  Dodge the guy with the camera around his neck!  Watch out for the mom with 3 kids and a fanny pack around her waist!  And, oh yeah, keep your eyes peeled for a parking spot. Yeah riiiiight! The roads were so jammed with cars and people, we feared we might have to have our picnic in the car.  As Annie patiently circled the monuments for 45 minutes, canvasing the Mall for a parking spot, we slowly started to enjoy our food. Then thanks to a whole row of handicapped spaces and my pretty blue placard, we were parked and ready to enjoy this beautiful day!
Holy cow!  How many cherry blossom trees total?

Unfortunately, we were parked too far away from our favorite monument to unfold our blanket and enjoy some time together at our usual spot.  But, we did have it in view.
DG love in DC

The two of us sat on our blanket and enjoyed what was left of our food and being with each other.  As we looked straight ahead, the Washington Monument and paddle boats were in our view.  Hey Fentons, y'all want to come visit DC and paddle the tidal basin with me?  Ella Jane would love it and we will all make sure she doesn't touch the water!  

The tourists no longer frustrated us.  They entertained us.  To our left was the family thinking they were taking the perfect Christmas card photo.  Little did they know, the youngest child was shoving pretzels into his mouth while the rest of the family smiled.  The woman on our right attempted to strike a pose with the symbol of the nation's capital in the background. I always wonder if I look as ridiculous as some of the tourists do when I visit a new city.  As much as I don't want to admit it, I am sure the natives of my vacation destinations get as much of a kick out of me as I get out of the visitors to DC!

After a few "touristy" photos and shivers from the wind and below average temperatures, Annie and I wrapped up our Sunday Funday.  Today served as another reminder that I am blessed to live in a beautiful city and have wonderful friends.  The tourists are just a minor annoyance.  Thanks for the fun, Annie. :V


1 comment:

  1. I had a great time! You captured the essence of yesterday's craziness/beauty perfectly :) Can't wait to do it again next year!


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