A rare treat for the Old Friends weekend, we were able to tour on Sunday as well. Today included breakfast, church and then a trip to downtown DC to visit the Navy Memorial (site of the Lone Sailor) and the National Portrait Gallery.
Our first stop after finding parking (which was free on the street where we were since it was Sunday), was a walking trip through Judiciary Square where we found these two gents deeply absorbed in an impromptu chess game. They didn’t include a timer. Russ pointed out that the board was also set wrong, not something to be noticed by the casual observer.
Our primary stop was just around the corner on Pennsylvania Avenue at the Navy Memorial. Best known for the statue of the Lone Sailor out front, there are exhibits and a theater inside. 2012 was celebrated as the Year of the Chief.
This centerpiece hangs in the center of the spiral staircase leading down to the main exhibit floor. This one is beautifully made of wood with the woodgrain showing as the gold color with painted silver for the shield. This is a replica of the traditional Chief Petty Officer’s collar device, the fouled anchor.
I’ll take a moment to apologize here for the quality of some of the pictures that follow. The lighting showed a glare on several of the displays. Normally, I’d reject those pictures but I believe the Navy Memorial needs to be shared a bit more and I’ll compromise the picture quality to give you a better idea what’s there.
The Navy Memorial maintains a log that allows sailors or their families to enter pertinent data about the sailor as part of the memorial. Their goal is to include all Navy Sea Service Vets. Father Steve was looking things over but decided to complete the entry back at Chateau Pierre.
After visiting the Navy Memorial we headed over to visit the National Portrait Gallery. The National Portrait Gallery is part of the Smithsonian Institution and is dedicated to the display of portraits of persons who have made significant contributions to American history and culture. There is an extensive display of Presidential portraiture including a wire sculpture of President George H.W. Bush pitching horseshoes. The American Art Museum (which shares the building) included exhibits displaying the national parks and other persons in our history. There was an exhibit depicting Amelia Earhart and artifacts from the US Patent Office.
We highly recommend that you take the time to visit. While you’re there, allow time to take in the atrium in the center courtyard shown in the pictures below.
We chose to grab lunch in the atrium. There were a number of folks who seemed to be just enjoying the opportunity to relax and read or study in the pleasant temperatures and the sunshine coming through the glass roof. It sure beat the cold outside.
Father Steve left on Monday via BWI where he experienced his unusual luck at finding delayed flights but arrived safely back at home, albeit a bit later than planned.
It was another great weekend with great friends, exploring the sights right here in our own backyard.