Seeing movies set where I’ve been – drama or documentary – a sense of knowing, watching scenes played out where I’ve been, especially when I’ve gleaned some sense of place and distance, geographical relationships, one place relative to others.
I have that sense here, now, of this place. Not just a better understanding of where some writer situated his/her fiction, but to feel history. Reading books, watching film – interesting, but walking through history … ah!
Architecture of these places inspires, but what grabs me most is what happened here, where more than any other city in the world where we daily wonder, ‘what happens next?’
DC vacation – enlightening, informative, enjoyable – seems polite and fluffy, but it runs deeper. Canadians and British made history here – winning the War of 1812, burning the place. Americans rebuilt. To locals, old government institutions they see whenever they want (like I see the Rockies every day) – easily glossing over magnificence and history of something we can see anytime.
Yesterday – library, court room, houses of government. Nothing ho hum there. Iconic, extraordinary – humbling. Congress, Supreme Court, Library of Congress tours. Then exploring by car, Du Pont Circle area, where trendy shops and neighbourhoods sprinkled with gated embassies which, believe it or not, blend in nicely. Visiting House and Senate chambers (as I found in Ottawa’s House of Commons and Senate) smaller than they appear on TV. Supreme Court Building is marble magnificence and artisanship. Jefferson library exhibit within the Library of Congress – an amazing demonstration of how ‘ahead of his time’ Jefferson’s brilliance, scholarship and writing became cornerstones of this city, country and its laws. And the Guttenberg Bible.
written / published from Arlington, VA
morning walk: 22C/71F, calm, empty sky – a full moon on my left, rosy sunrise painting horizon on my right, as magnificent a free-attraction as we could want every day; early start, last day of convention, flying home early tomorrow …