Its been so long since my last post. I just want to make this clear to explain why I haven't been up here. I have so much going on with my life because I'm trying to apply for another school before next fall, taking a few courses at my community college, working at a job, attending an 18 to 20 somethings ministry (AXIS) and doing tae kwon do. For some reason, my focus in being involved with all of these activities is increasing because it keeps me from doing nothing.
I have been out of town twice this summer (already over now) and it was tight to be honest. Some of you have engaged in doing other art activities like visiting an art museum, attend an art reception or better yet took on a workshop. I know for the most part, that I need to save a lot financially if I ever want to be on my own.
I just got back from Washington D.C. over labor day weekend. Here is the journal log that I wrote:
Today I woke up at the crack of dawn, and I rolled out of bed before leaving the house. I checked on my geckos and they are good as usual, with the note for my father to read. It is information on how to feed and care for the lizards while I'm out of town. After I got my articles bundled up, I hopped into the truck and left the house at 5:40 am. As we pulled into the airport, I said goodbye to my father and checked in with TSA. My mother bought the airfare by using her United Miles and the hotel right off on priceline.com less than two days before we departed out of Chicago O'Hare International Airport. The flight was on time and that there were no delays or cancellations.
As we got into Washington DC, we raced against the time by taking public transit from one line to another. I saved a reservation time to visit the Capitol @ 2pm. The day was getting somewhat hot and we checked in at the hotel and store our articles in the room before heading off. I felt very confident that we went to the US Capitol, the Legislative Branch of the US Government. It is one of the big branch powers in the whole nation. Inside the building, there is so much to see: architecture, decorative design, paintings and most of all: SCULPTURES. OMG, the interior has a lot to tell from the Freedom Statue on top to where George Washington's Crypt resides. We took a tour of the place and learned that it started somewhere in the early 1800s. Each sculpture was an important figure in our history and the role he/she contributed. The articles that were shown in the exhibits were mostly letters about the preamble speech, article 1, and so on. The way the style is written is cursive and accurate from a tip of a feather.
After the tour, I walked around the Capitol area and took pictures of its exterior. I managed to get a view of the dome and the wings on each side. As I was walking, I went to the Union Station and asked for help. The employees there showed me where the Metro station is and getting a map. It is one of the biggest stations in the Washington DC area, including the regional Amtrak. Its trains depart to Baltimore, New York, Boston, and Cincinnati. I went downstairs to the Metro transit station and hopped on the train back to our hotel. We went to Whole foods and bought food for the long weekend so that we wouldn't spend $$ on breakfast. By doing it, this gives us the advantage for other things. I walked back to the room with the food and stored it. I ate dinner and finished the day by being back in the room nice and cool. Tomorrow is the visit to Newseum and the Smithsonian. Hopefully, it doesn't storm badly or my plans may change.
Today we headed to the Newseum, the best attraction in the DC area. It is known for its interactive newsroom, Be a TV reporter Exhibit, the Berlin Wall, the 9/11 tower, the Pulitzer Prize Photography and the front covers that capture our history. As I walked into each hall, the newspaper articles were dated back to 1455 to the present day. The news started as a small booklet and grew by each decade to a more fascinating document. With images and text captioning the events in our chronology, there is always a significant impact that moved us. The 4D movie was very educational because they transitioned from war, hate, peace, election, assassination, to the famous wedding of Princess Diana in 1980. My mom was trying to get me to do the be a tv reporter with her. I felt somehow not comfortable because it would be embarrassing to do with. So I got to read the teleprompter covering the cherry blossom headline. It was really cool to see what it would be live.
After the long five hour walk inside, we past by the Natural History Museum and went down towards the Smithsonian Castle. It was really cool to see inside because of its interior and the columns were huge. I did a sketch of a bear, which gave me quick practice. Then I went over to the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. We sought to see the works of art both geometrically to abstract media. It was basically the same art that is held in most art museums. On the way out, I ran into a cosplay group doing a photoshoot. They were from the DC Cosplay Club. It was really odd to see them because its been a while since I've been in one. They go to a con called katsucon. I would like to see it but it would take planning and travel arrangements.
After I left the garden and said farewell to the cosplay group, I went to the garden fountain in the pavilion to cool my feet off. We covered about half the national mall. As much as I know, the neighborhood streets both in the downtown and in the dupont circle has an abundant amount of shops, cafes, restaurants, and banks. After all, I'm enjoying knowing which streets run north and south, east to west, and diagonal. Tomorrow if its nice out, I will rent a bicycle and venture to the other half of the mall. If not, we will go to a museum and stay inside until it stops. Who knows what happens. Life is full of unexpected predictions.
This morning I went to the St. Matthews Cathedral to pray and to reflect on my family. The organ that played the music during the service was spectacular. The pillars, the paintings and the stained glass windows were beautiful to imagine. The cathedral holds both English and Spanish services during the weekend and on some weekdays.
After church, I went to rent the bike from Capital Bikeshare to conduct my ride over to the other side of the National Mall. I started with the White House first. It was the north side that I took because the closest bike rental from us was on 16th and O streets. While we rode, there were so many people out today that it was getting hot by the hour. I looked at the World War II Memorial and there were structures that stood on both sides depicting the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. Then I rode over to the Vietnam Veterans Memorial; there were hundreds of names who died during the long war. I asked a volunteer ranger and he said that Maya Lin was the one who designed it and entered it during a national competition. She was a junior at Yale University during the time when this happened. Out of the hundreds who entered the competition, her design won recognition for it. After I learned the facts about it, I rode up to the Lincoln Memorial. In there were two huge messages written on the walls inside: The Gettysburg Address and the Second Inaugural Address. They were very important messages because they formed the liberty and how it shaped the country. As I finished getting the pictures, I headed over to the Korean War Memorial. The sculptures there were clearly detailed and sculpted. Their faces show feelings of fear and the struggle against struggle. Next, I rode over to the Martin Luther King Jr. and Jefferson Memorials. Both leaders were famous for their speeches and campaigns.
After the 2-hour bike ride, I had lunch at a wonderful restaurant, which reminded me of the Café that I used to work with. Their food was fabulous and the way they prepared it. I really appreciated their preparation and the cooking method. As I left, I went to the Holocaust Memorial Museum. It was so emotional inside that it left me a multitude of horrible memories that my grandmother faced when she was a child. I walked from one exhibition to another in terms of learning the horrors of what brutal leaders did especially Adolf Hitler. There was a lot he did during WWI and WWII and how he got to be chancellor. Then I made my way down to the Genocide exhibit. This is a crisis that our world is facing today. I made my comment on what would I do to meet the challenge. This museum gave me the chills but groundbreaking facts what it has to offer. After a long day, I had a snack in the shade before I went back to the room. As soon as I left the train, another cosplay group came on and I was in seconds of photographing them, but I already encountered one yesterday. When I came back to my room, I laid on my bed for a bit before heading out for dinner. My plans for tomorrow are that we will see the Hope Diamond in the Museum of Natural History before seeing the National Gallery of Art Museum. Then I will make my way to Georgetown, a neighborhood on the west side of the DC area.
Today was much cooler than the past three days. I took the metro to the Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. It is so massive that hundreds of thousands of soldiers sacrificed their lives to protect our country and freedom. I took a tour mobile of the area by seeing the JFK Gravesite, the Tomb of the Unknown soldiers where a sentinel of the Third Infantry Regiment marches 21 steps, turns and pauses for 21 seconds, then marches again the other direction. This is the highest honor for any military or dignitary ever seen. During the 24-hour shift, there is a changing of the guard every half hour in the summer. Then we came back to the Visitors Center before heading over to the National Mall.
I made my stop to the Museum of American History, which I found quite fascinating. The vast displays of the First Ladies of the U.S. Presidents, the 1950s and 60s inventions, science, the wars, and the science that shaped our trends. I was very certain that I learned all of it during my education. Then I went to the Museum of Natural History where the Hope Diamond Exhibit is. There were so many people that it took me more time to see than I expected. It was the 50th anniversary of the historic donation and the museum's centennial. The museum exhibited for the first time in a new temporary setting called "Embracing Hope." This was a cool piece to see because my mom wanted me to picture is as if she was given something that she has never seen. Then I moved into the gems and crystals exhibit where vast amounts were taken from around the world. From diamonds to birthstones, they were taken and somehow made into how they were formed into jewelry. These minerals were measured in carats to tons. Some of the famous digs were done in Franklin, NJ and in parts of other countries like Chile which is known for its mining. I remembered once that the news portraying the rescue of the workers was dangerous. Then the rest of the museum, were collections of animals, mostly those that I've seen from zoos and other wildlife refuges.
After a long day there, I went back to the room to recover before heading out to Georgetown. What's interesting about it is that it holds a big university near the DC area. My mom used to have conference trips there before she moved to Grainger. It wasn't so bad to see because it reminded me of campus town in my university. I ate dinner at a saloon-like restaurant, which consists of old brick walls and rungs on the stairway that was worn down. As the weather got rainy again, I got on the bus and went back to my hotel and ended my day with a good night sleep. Tomorrow will be my last day before heading back home.
Today was the last day, so I went to the National Gallery of Art. There were a bunch of paintings, sculptures like I have seen in every museum. I went to have lunch and bought a few items that I wanted before I left. Then I left the hotel and took my belongings before heading over to the airport. As we got our bags checked and cleared through security, I noticed a gentleman over at the gate that the aircraft was about to board, it was that instant that I texted my mother saying "come to gate
now!" The flight attendant said that they didn't have the time to wait and so I got the earlier flight than the time intended from the boarding pass. We were able to get back home and I finally rested from the trip. Now its time to get back to where I need to be.
What an awesome tour to see. So every year, one trip like this is worth while. No wonder there is always something to learn. Well folks on DA, I will do my best to update my gallery as soon as I get the time. It will be fantastic one day.
Listening to: Chris Tomlin