Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Trip of Knowledge: Day 3

Georgetown University
Day 3:

Wanting a break from the city and walking, we take a tour trolley to Georgetown, which is not named after George Washington because the town was here before anyone knew our First President.  It was most likely named after King George II because it was apart of the British Colony.  But it was George's favorite town!  Wonder why?  But this historically quaint yet trendy town has a lot of fun quirks throughout its streets.  In just a couple of hours, we walked down and up the three steep flights of stairs that were filmed in the Exorcist.  We strolled by the home where Jackie O. lived after the assassination of JFK.  We walked along the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal and visited Georgetown University, where President Bill Clinton graduated in 1968.

But I especially fell in love with the colorful homes! 

Georgetown Homes
Georgetown trivia... the homes are so narrow here because back in the day, the residents were taxed on the width of their homes, not by the square footage.  In fact, the narrowest home measures only 9 feet across! 

We hop back on the trolley and ride toward the Capitol!

Make sure you get a tour of the Capitol because you learn some fun things from the guide.  Unfortunately, Congress was not in session while we were there, but we entered a room call the National Statuary Hall that used to be the Hall of the House of Representatives.  But they had to move out of this Hall because the acoustics were so bad that you could hear someone talking 20 feet away but not 5 feet away.  And our tour guide demonstrated this fascinating accident that the architects never intended to happen for this meeting room. 

The US Capitol
Since the Supreme Court was so close, we run over there just in time before it closes.  Because we were visiting during the off season, everything closed by 5pm!  So we were literally sometimes running through buildings to catch a quick glimpse and run to the next attraction.  Again, 7 days would have been better...

The Supreme Court
Some more trivia... our 27th President William Howard Taft was known more for his 9 years of Chief Justice in the Supreme Court than his presidency.  It was hard for Taft to follow the bombastic footsteps of his predecessor Teddy Roosevelt.  But he is the only President who led in both the Executive and Judicial branches.  He himself said, "I do not remember that I was ever President". 

Also, Taft was the first President to own a car, but he couldn't drive it because he was too fat to fit in it, weighing in at 332 lbs!  He was also the first President to throw the first ball to begin the baseball season.  And he's the first President to be buried in the Arlington Cemetery.

We're back on the trolley for one last loop around the National Mall.  When our tour is over, we walk to Carmine's for dinner and share a huge family style plate of Chicken Parmigiana and walked back to the hotel with round bellies.  Thank goodness for these 10 mile walks, at least we're burning off the calories..

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