Monday, April 14, 2014

An afternoon in Washington DC

Over the last few days we have had my in-laws visiting.  Yesterday the four of us attended a service at the United States Navy Memorial.  You can read about the Memorial here.  Husband Gregg took most of the photos for this post.


The service was outside and we couldn't have asked for more perfect weather.


This year the US Navy memorial was honoring the U.S. Coast Guard.  The Coast Guard is celebrating its 222nd Birthday. 


The United States Coast Guard Band entertained us with splendid music.


We watched the Presentation of Colors and listened to the National Anthem, followed by speeches and then the Invocation and Blessing of the Fleets.  Finally the Charging of the Fountains.  This year the U.S. Navy Ceremonial Guard was joined by the U.S. Coast Guard Ceremonial Guard, who added water from the Seven Seas and Great lakes to the Navy Memorial fountains.  This is to bring them to life for the incoming Spring season, a tradition which occurs every year at the same time as The Annual Cherry Blossom Festival.



After the ceremony ended my Father-in-Law was approached by a young Marine and his family.  The young man asked my Father-in-Law if he could have his photo taken with him.  Gregg's Dad wears his WWII Veteran's Cap and also a very impressive jacket showing all the ships he served on during his 30 year naval career. It draws a lot of people and being the wonderful person that he is, he is the kind of guy who knows no strangers and welcomes everyone.  He also took part in D-Day and this is embroidered on the back of his cap, along with his name.  

(Sorry, but as I didn't ask this very nice family for permission to use their images, I fogged everyone's face out.)  

I spoke briefly to this young Marine and he was such a lovely young man, and we all appreciated how he and his family took the time to approach my Father-in-Law, ask him about his experiences and very genuinely thank him for his service.  It totally added to this very enjoyable day.


This is another photo taken by Gregg which shows the statue of The Lone Sailor.  I read the following information here.


"The Lone Sailor, a 1987 bronze sculpture, is a tribute to all the personnel of the sea services.  The sculpture was created by Stanley Bleifeld for the United States Navy Memorial in Washington, D.C."

"As part of the casting process, the bronze for The Lone Sailor was mixed with artifacts from eight US Navy ships, provided by the Naval Historical Center."


 
Bill the Goat was in attendance.  He is the Mascot of the U.S. Naval Academy and you can read all about him here


He was very popular but in all that heat I hope he had a fan inside his costume!
 

These are a few scenes on our way out of town.  We came across a lot of traffic and didn't get down to see the Cherry Blossoms.  The traffic was at a standstill.  Many roads had been closed off due to the parade, which hadn't long ended. Not surprisingly the city was gridlocked and we all agreed that we had never been there with this amount of road traffic before, and also thousands and thousands of people who were there for the Cherry Blossom Festival.  We saw several pedicabs maneuvering through the heavy traffic, which was at a standstill.  If you want to give your feet a rest you can enjoy one of these rides here.  I've wondered about it myself but not sure I would be very brave in all the traffic, as competent as the drivers might have been.


It took us a long time to get down to the main road and instead of turning right towards the Jefferson Memorial, we turned left.  It added 12 to 15 miles to our journey but at least we were flowing, albeit in the opposite direction to where we wanted to go, for a while.  We did a very large loop around the city and we all agreed when we returned home, that if we had taken that right-hand turn we would probably still have been stuck in the city.

In the photo above you can see the United States Botanical Garden and the Capitol Building.


On the freeway I couldn't resist taking these last two photos of the gas truck with the zebra image on the back.



It was a great trip into the city.  My In-Laws are now safely home as they left this morning.  They tell us they got stuck in traffic for a while also, the closer they got to home.  Everyone seems to be out and about and enjoying the warmer weather of Spring.

31 comments:

  1. An enjoyable day, Denise, and a worthy one. I guess there was quite a lot of emotion too. I alway get a lump in the throat when I attend things like that.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Due to a lot of 'hustle and bustle' I haven't been on your blog for a long time. Sorry for that Denise! Finally I found some time now and I've watched your posts and I read it with a lot of pleasure. :-)

    Hope you'll have a great week
    http://dzjiedzjee.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. Years ago,I attended these functions down town. I even met John Warner when he was Secretary of the Navy at one function. I hope your aging parents enjoyed the day.

    These days, I am content to look at your nice photos. My deceased first husband looked like the sharp Marine in your photo. So long ago. Dianne

    ReplyDelete
  4. Hi Denise, what a wonderful and meaningful event you attended! Greg's family must be so proud and happy to be part of it.

    I love the zebra print too.

    Happy Easter week!

    ReplyDelete
  5. what a wonderful service to attend with your in-laws. bless your father-in-law. :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. hubby did a fantastic job of taking photos and i love that zebra on the truck, never seen one like that. i would like to see the botanical gardens... you had a wonderful day with family plus all the sight seeing.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Oh, I am delighted! This brings back memories of the days when I used to go to Washington with my father, we were immigrants and he often had to go to the Italian Embassy in Washington.

    ReplyDelete
  8. What a fabulous place to take your in-laws.. Your hubby's father had a distinguishing career in the Navy, didn't he? That's awesome... So glad he could meet up with a young soldier.. I'm sure that young man idolized your FIL...

    It's so great that you live close enough to places like that where you can take friends/family.

    Hugs,
    Betsy

    ReplyDelete
  9. I visited the Navy Memorial, although there was no service at the time I was there. It was a fascinating experience nevertheless. My nephew attended the Naval Academy, so I have seen Billy a few times. I don't envy you having to fight all that traffic.

    Please thank your father-in-law for his service for us.

    ReplyDelete
  10. There is always something interesting to see and do in your neck of the woods. Thanks for your wonderful photos, Denise.

    ReplyDelete
  11. It looks like you all had a grand time!! I'm sure the in-laws loved every minute. Sorry about the traffic, but that seems to be a problem in most places these days. Have a great week and thank you for the tour!

    ReplyDelete
  12. A very special event Denise, I did follow the links to learn more and it's very interesting for me.
    Wonderful images as always, which brings these things to life.

    ReplyDelete
  13. You have a wonderful set of photos there Denise. It looks like everyone had a wonderful heart warming day in paying tribute to the armed forces. Where would we be without these brave folk?

    ReplyDelete
  14. Denise so beautiful photographs by Gregg and hope you would have spent a wonderful time with your in-laws and what a wonderful event you have attended..

    ReplyDelete
  15. Wow. What an incredible day. Thank you for taking us along - and thank Gregg for his photos too.
    Love the zebra - I would have smiled broadly.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Denise, I notice that some of the people in your shots are wearing shorts - sigh.... it is still so snowy here! My f-i-l is also a WWII vet - he just turned 91. It's great that your in-laws can still travel and enjoy some time with you and Gregg.

    ReplyDelete
  17. What a fabulous ceremony..thanks for sharing it with us. ..I always get a bit teary at these things.
    Jane x

    ReplyDelete
  18. Such a lovely day out Denise, whenever I hear a military band playing, I can't help but get all welled-up inside...
    I'm smiling at the zebra truck, how sweet.
    A Happy Easter to you and your family sweet friend.
    Hugs,
    ~Jo

    ReplyDelete
  19. this looks like such a lovely service, we were at the parade. traffic was a nightmare but we had arranged for a car service that day. dropped us off at the parade and came back for us 2 hours later. that was wonderful. after the parade, we went back to the hotel so we were driving away from the chaos. we viewed the cherry blossoms on friday, it was so beautiful and much less crowded.

    so funny that were were so close to each other and did not know it!!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Wonderful post and photos of the trip for the memorial ~ for OWT ~ xoxo

    artmusedog and carol (A CreativeHarbor)

    ps. my Son is an officer in the Naval Reserves and was in the regular Navy for 11 years ~ so appreciate this post ~ thanks.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Denise, what a wonderful event. It is great that your in-laws were able to visit too. Wonderful series of photos.. Have a happy week!

    ReplyDelete
  22. A really lovely description and photographs of a special day Denise.
    It would have been a very proud and emotional time for everyone.
    Cheerio :D)

    ReplyDelete
  23. Spectacular shots. That's the kind of place I'd like to see for myself.

    ReplyDelete
  24. This was just lovely! Thank so much





    ALOHA from Honolulu
    ComfortSpiral

    =^..^= <3

    ReplyDelete
  25. Wow! How wonderful! What a neat service to experience, too. I bet you dad was touched by the photo request. :)

    ReplyDelete
  26. first time I've heard of Bill the Goat

    ReplyDelete
  27. We also visited the Navy Memorial on our recent D.C. Weekend as Pat is a veteran as well. There were no celebrations that day, so thanks to Gregg for taking these photos to share. Kudos to his dad as well.

    ReplyDelete
  28. What a wonderful trip and so many interesting things you included in your narrative! My Dad was Navy, and this made me wish he and Mom could've gotten up to D.C. to see this ceremony before Dad got too sick. How great the Marine wanted his picture made with your Father in Law! We see so many WWII vets and Korean War vets at the V.A. when we go, and it always moves me so much! They are American treasures!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Very nice pictures and documentary about the naval memorial service. You were very brave to drive in D.C. During cherry blossom festival time!

    ReplyDelete
  30. What a wonderful day with your family! Lovely post. Knew nothing about this annual water ceremony. Our oldest son is a Coast Guard veteran.

    ReplyDelete

I thank you for taking the time to leave a comment. I enjoy reading them very much and always try to return a visit.