Wednesday 20 October 2010

Day 54 – The Spy Who Gouged Me

With our legs still stiff from yesterdays walking, we had an unproductive and slow start to the morning. Considering how much sightseeing we still had to fit in this was not the plan we had put in place when we went to bed last night. Pulling ourselves together we finally got out the door and onto the metro for our first stop – the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum.
The museum is a stark look at the atrocities that occurred during WWII when the Nazis tried to exterminate the Jews. Starting by explaining how Adolf Hitler came to run things, it takes you through every detail of what happens when the worst of human nature gets a platform and the power to back it up. Normally in life when somebody starts spouting anti-Semitic beliefs they are ignored as a ranting racist nutcase, but somehow Germany put a guy like this in charge and it cost the world dearly.
The museum is definitely worth a visit if you’re in Washington DC. Having visited Auschwitz itself (standing in an actual gas chamber will send chills up your spine), this museum goes a long way in giving you a sense of what happened in concentration camps like that. Despite enjoying being on the tourist track, it’s always important to take the time out to learn about not just the good, but also the bad of this world.
Trying to move more into the good, we walked around the capital and came across the FBI headquarters for a photo op before finding the Spy museum. They don’t allow photos inside; I guess they don’t want their ‘secrets’ getting out, but it was a decently interactive museum. Well overpriced at $18 a head, it was probably worth it just to let Joe get his James Bond geek on. Somehow the day had gotten away from us and we rushed over to the National Archives -- only to find it had closed five minutes earlier. We’ll head back there tomorrow!
With everywhere closing their doors for the night, we found something with no opening hours…because you’re not allowed inside unless elected president! Ah the White House! We didn’t know whether Barack was home or not, but I like to think he spotted us out the window and thought ‘Hey there’s Joe & Ani, I’m so glad they came to visit!’…
So, until tomorrow…

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