17 May 2013

Transamerica Cycle 2013, travel day 2

Today we reach D.C. in the afternoon and bid goodbye to our awesome teddy-bear-carrying seat-friend as he goes off to his conference. Our next train doesn't leave for like six hours and we want to see some of the capitol so we go looking for lockers, only to realize because of 911 and the whole this-is-the-capitol thing there aren't any. There is a paid left-luggage place, but it's $48 for our bags for the day! We despair about that for a while then pay it and go 'cause there's no way we can carry everything all day and waiting in the station for six hours would be really boring.

After chow, we head down to the Lincoln memorial 'cause it's the farthest away, something like 3 miles from Union Station. On the way we see the Wellington monument (some call it the Washington monument but we all know what it's really about), which is under construction, apparently? 



And the big World War II memorial. 

Walking so far in cycling shoes is really uncomfortable. The soles are too stiff and the cleats crunch in the gravel. It's also really hot. Ah well. Lincoln is huge and iconic and it's good to have seen him. Jenn almost cries because she just read Gone with the Wind and the memorial brings it all to life for her.

After Lincoln we head back thru the Korean War memorial, past the big reflecty pool, thru a sculpture garden, and into the Air and Space museum. We only have something like 45 minutes before it closes but we look at all the planes on the ceiling and the solar system exhibit. There's a picture of the actual surface of Venus which is one of my favorite things ever. Because it's like, that's real, that exists on another planet, and the probe that took it promptly melted and died because Venus is basically hell. It died for that photo. I just like it, idk.

The train ride to Richmond is pretty short. I finally get a window seat. Dan sits next to a really nice old man and they talk about tennis. The staff on this train are my favorite so far. We disembark at Staple Mill Road, then panic a bit because our bikes weren't on that train--but they came early and all is well. Except it isn't because as we put our bikes together we realize that the skewer (axle) for Dan's front wheel is missing... a call to Mama confirms we left it in their garage. The motel we have reservations at is only 2 miles away, tho', so we walk our bikes there in solidarity with Dan, him rolling it wheelie-style and Jenn holding his wheel. It smells, and sounds, like my childhood here. Hard to describe. The flowers are all familiar, familial, the insects humming and chirping my memories in the fields. Virginia. We're here.

The motel is decent (showers and beds always appreciated) and they go out to eat and I go to bed and tomorrow we start cycling, guys!

pax.

2 comments:

  1. I get the memories bit. I've been so many places, and there's something about all of them that reaches me that way.

    d

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  2. When I went to St Louis, I got the a similar resurgence of memories of home, just from the environment, the lush landscape, the moist atmosphere. It was much more like home than Colorado.

    -Salem

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