Sunday, April 29, 2012

How do you say "No Thank You" in Chinese?

Well, you all will be happy to know that I arrived safely and on time in Washington D.C. Friday evening. I have spent the time since feeling very much like Mr. Smith. D.C. is a place I have wanted to come my whole life and being here now is at times overwhelming. For those who don't know I am in D.C. with BYU's Washington seminar program which brings about 40-45 interns to D.C. every semester. We all live together in a marvelous facility known as the Barlow Center right off of Pennsylvania Ave, about 10 blocks from the White House. I will be an intern at the law firm Rosenau and Rosenau from now until the end of July. I will try and blog weekly (or weakly as the case may be) to keep you up to date on my adventures out here.
For this week: Saturday morning several of us who had arrived the night previous decided to go explore the city. So five of us set out on foot down Pennsylvania avenue to find the fabled house once known as the executive mansion, now more creatively termed the White House. I have to say I felt amazing actually being there for the first time. There was also a Muslim guy in the street chanting something, but we don't know Arabic so we didn't know much, but Michael-Sean tried to get a picture with him, the Arab and the white house all in it. Across the street is the anti nuclear vigil which had been protesting nuclear weapons 24hrs a day since 1981, which is kind of interesting.
After the white house we made our way around the department of treasury to the Mall. We debated for some time what we should do and finally settled on a trip to the "old post office" which has a tower from which we'd been told we would have as good a view of the mall as we could from the Washington monument without the long lines. After making our way through the tight security at the PO we wandered about until we found the way to the elevator that takes you to the floor where you can then get on another elevator to the top. The view up there was very good.
When we reached the ground again we decided it was time to find some food, so off we went to China town. After some consulting with smart phones and outdoor menus we settled on a place called "Ming's" which had a relatively cheap lunch menu. We entered and were escorted to a large booth and handed menus, upon which we found no lunch listings. This made us understandably perturbed and when questioned we were explained something that silly hicks from provo cannot be expected to know, that there is no lunch menu on weekends, because obviously people only eat dinner on the weekends. After some consulting among the council we decided to let our voice be heard by leaving the restaurant then and there, which we did. We then wandered and found that this rule of weekends is fairly standard in China town, but fortunately for us it is foreign to the Turks and we found a tiny hole in the wall Turkish shop where I had my first falafel, which was very good.
Then to continue our adventure and since we had saved so much money not eating at Ming's, we made our first foray into the the smithsonian, and watched the IMAX movie at the air and space museum, which was about the Hubble telescope and the last attempt to run maintenance on it, it was awe inspiring. Afterwards we discovered that the air and space museum is a good place to get lost and we spent most of the rest of the afternoon learning about flying and war and space.
Well that was it for saturday, here are the pics.