I’d never been to D.C. before, so when my cousin suggested I come out with her to see her brother and the sights, I was excited. We ended up driving instead of flying due to ticket costs, so most of the first day was taken up by an 8 hour drive through Indiana, Ohio, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, and Maryland.
But we finally made it. After hanging out with my second cousin for few hours, and having a delicious supper of basil tomato soup with shrimp and garlic bread, the first cousin and I took the metro out towards the national mall.
It was great. And cold. And a very lengthy walk that I started to feel towards the end. But have I mentioned how cool it was to see stuff mostly without the crowds and lit up? We saw an unidentified by us cool building, the White House, the Washington and Lincoln monuments, the Korean War memorial, and a distance view of the Jefferson monument. Then it was back on the metro! After not being able to use one station entrance because of the time…
Once on the metro, I in my stupidity decided it would be fine if we made our originally planned stop at a bookstore/cafe, even though it was late, we’d walked miles, driven even longer, certain of us were very short on sleep, and the second cousin (brother to first) was no longer going to meet us there and drive us back to his place then. So we stopped. Quickly. Just enough time to see they had a ton of cool books and to split a bowl of peach cobbler a la mode.
We rushed back to the metro then. In time to miss the train we needed in our confusion over why the track we thought we needed was closed. Turns out they were single tracking it. So we waited for the next one headed in the right direction. The one which might also be our last chance to get back to the apt without needing a taxi to do so…
We did make it. It was late, but we made. Although while we waited we were also privileged enough to be the recipients of a curse laden racist rant. My first time to hear a racist rant with that many “f***”s and “motherf*****s”. And it was aimed at us, which was also a first for me. We were both so glad when some other (also non-white) man came over and the ranting man left. I can’t imagine facing racism on a daily basis, however, so it was a good reminder that even if the racist rants I hear normally aren’t that curse-filled and making me nervous for our safety, they are making someone else afraid or at least aware of so much ingrained hate and they probably experience it far more frequently, if not daily. We all need to do our part to stop the hate.
And thus ended the first day in DC.