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Thanksgiving DC 2007
 
 
(Click on the images for a larger version.)
Ilaria Washington Flyer DC bus
My family decided to do Thanksgiving a little different this year. Rather than going to someone's house, we decided to meet up at the Disney Resort in Hilton Head Georgia.

By the time Ilaria and I got around to booking our Thanksgiving flight, the only flights left to Hilton head were on tiny pond-hopper airplanes, of which I'm not a big fan. So I suggested we fly JetBlue from Boston to DC and work our way down to Hilton Head, while enjoying some Southern cities.
 
west falls metro station
Ilaria likes to engineer complicated vacations, so she was up for the challenge.
 
Ilaria J DC metro
We arrived in DC on Tuesday morning; we stopped at the train station to drop our bags off and make sure everything was still ok with the train we were scheduled to take that evening.
 
jazz union station DC christmas
We discovered that the train station has jazz bands play during the holidays.

Thankfully, we found a place to store our bags at the station
 
autumn leaves DC
and we set off to explore DC in late autumn.
 
DC postal museum
I really wanted to see the National Postal Museum, because I was curious to see what could possibly be inside such a museum. Unfortunately, it wasn't open yet when we arrived and by the time we got back to the museum later that evening it was closed for the day.
 
National History Museum elephant
So our first museum stop was the National Museum of Natural History. Somehow I lost Ilaria when we first entered the museum, so I spent a lot of time staring at this elephants bottom, which was where I thought we were supposed to be meeting.
 
National History Museum elephant front
Eventually we found each other, and we headed to everyone's first destination in a Natural History Museum:
 
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the Dinosaur room!
 
tourists Hope diamond DC
After checking out the always cool dinosaurs, we went to look at tourists taking pictures of the Hope diamond. The Hope diamond was pretty neat, but gave me Mona Lisa flashbacks.
 
national history museum meteorite
My favorite part of the museum was this rather large meteorite that was found near Tucson, Arizona. Pretty cool that this thing was once flying around in space.
 
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We left the natural history museum and walked to the National Archives which holds the three most famous documents in America:
 
National Archives DC
The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights. You're not allowed to take photographs inside. If you plan on seeing these three documents, be prepared to wait in line, and make sure you go 100 years ago, because if you go see them in their present form you'll be disappointed to find that they are faded to the point of being unrecognizable.

From this museum, I learned that if I want to start my own country, I should make sure to carve the important documents into stone.

Ilaria was impressed that they were able to make such large pieces of paper back then.
 
Capitol Building DC night
It was getting late, so we walked past the Capitol Building on our way to
 
Union Station DC night
Union Station
 
amtrak train
where we loaded an overnight train to our next Southern destination.
 
Ilaria Amtrak reclining seat
We were impressed by the train amenities. There was quite a bit more leg room than we were used to from our Europe and Northeastern US train experiences. And the chairs had leg rests!
 
Ilaria J Amtrak
Alright, let's go to sleep and wake up in Charleston, South Carolina.