Sunday, August 15, 2010

DC or Bust

Some friends and I planned a impromptu trip to DC today.  The plan was to meet at Tony's house on Capitol Hill, ride bikes to the mall, eat lunch, go to a museum, ride bikes, perhaps grab some dinner and head home.
We arrived at one of the countries finest coffee shops, peregrine, around 10am.  Alex sampled my macchiatto, we visited Eastern Market, and went to Tony's.  Tony had italian meats, cheese, fresh baked bread, and all the accessories to make some quality sandwiches for our picnic lunch.  Todd called to say he was delayed.
The bike ride began at Tony's and we rode mostly bike lanes down to the mall.  Thomas on his new mtb, Henry on his old Trek, and Lexi in the trailer.  Janel was kind enough to drop Michele and Alex off at the museum.
Lunch at the memorial for fallen officers (law enforcement) was fantastic.  We had great food, comfortable seats, and some smuggled Sangiovese.
The National Building Museum was featuring a LEGO exhibition and, thanks to Tony, we had reserved tickets (the exhibit is perpetually booked up and tickets can only be reserved in person).

Another call from Todd, he is really running behind but departing soon.  We head in for our 2:00-3:00 Lego time allotment.  The exhibit is cool, some big Lego skyscrapers, some DC-centric models, but the kids head straight for the bulding section.  The idea is that you build something and put it into their streetscape.  Another call from Todd, this time he is stranded on the GW Parkway with car trouble and not going to make it - when it rains............  offer to help, but he's going to nurse the car into a shop for some tires.  His day is a bust.
The Lego building section is pretty well laid out.  Tables overflowing with Legos of all shapes and sizes, stools for little tykes, big tykes, and parent-like tykes - everyone is comfortable.
I fumble around helping the boys get situated and then come upon the idea of building a model of our house in Frederick.  Partially, because there is a large percentage of red Lego bricks available.
Thomas and Henry finish several builds in the first hour and a half, then come to help me for a 1/2 hour or so as I put the finishing touches on my model house.
Afterwards, we get Michele to the Metro (right across the street) so she can ride back to Eastern Market where we plan to meet her on our bikes.  We tour a couple of parks, hop some steps, ride the mall, get some lemonade, and head back East toward the Capitol.  I'm hopping curbs and slam the sh*t out of my back wheel on a double.  The sound is horrible and the air lasts a couple of seconds then.......flat.  There are a bunch of bike cabs in from of the Air and Space Museum, but no patches or 29'er tubes. 

Adjust the plan.  Now Henry, Thomas, and I are riding the Metro to Eastern Market with our bikes and they are psyched!  We take the elevator down at some Federal station.  The guy helps us buy tickets.  Things have changed a bit since the late 80's when I lived there.  Through the turnstiles and down another elevator to catch our train.  We only go two stops, get off, and oops........ no elevator.  A helpful person offers to carry Henry's bike up the escalator - which really..... helps.  Curiously, these turnstiles are narrower and the bikes don't fit through.  Again, a helpful person offers to hand all of our bikes over the barrier.  Again, helpful.  A quick elevator ride up and we are back at peregrine to find Michele, Janel, Tony, Lexi, and Alex waiting for us.

Adjust the plan.  Let's get some dinner.  We decide on Matchbox, a nearby stylish place with great pizzas, beer selection, and wine by the glass.  Calamari, Miniburgers, pizza, a Shiraz, a chef's special BLT (made with pork bellies and fois gras), Bell's Double-hearted Ale, plenty to satisfy all of us. 

We walk back to Tony's place, load the bikes into the car, say our farewells, plan tomorrow's ride, and head home.

Great Day.  Don't worry Todd, we'll do it again.

1 comment:

Todd said...

Sounds like a great day....for you all. I hope we do plan to do it again. Jonathan was seriously bummed out when we had to bail. When I started to drive again he kept asking if "we were going to the museum now?". I hated saying "no, daddy's car needs some new sneakers".

The good news is I have 5 brand new tires. The Passport rides much smoother and I have a functional spare. Woo hoo!