I think every American should visit Washington, D.C., at least once. I’ve now been there twice, though the first time was 28 years ago. I didn’t get to do any cool outdoorsy stuff either time I went. I guess there’s supposed to be some really good fishing not far from D.C., but on both trips, we spent all our time checking out museums, monuments and government buildings.
The first time I went, it was with the Close-Up program for high-school students. That visit focused more on the government workings. We learned how to contact our senators and representatives to voice our concerns, and we toured all the must-see things like the Lincoln Monument and the Vietnam War Memorial.
Our trip last week was courtesy of the Congressional Award program. If you have a kid who is 13 years old or older, check that program out. It’s an incredible opportunity for kids to earn a scholarship and earn a trip to D.C. It’s a lot of work for both the kid and the kid’s parents, but it’s well worth it. Our oldest son earned his Gold Congressional Award, and all three of our Congressional delegates presented him with his award on the stage at the Capitol Auditorium.
Colby took some tours with the Congressional Award group, and Amy, Logan and I were free to explore the capital city. I would have liked to spend my vacation fishing, but we did plenty of hiking. After carrying my camera backpack an average of 14 miles a day, I think I’m in pretty good shape for hunting season.
And even though it was an urban vacation rather than a backwoods adventure, we still saw plenty of wildlife. You wouldn’t believe the weird stuff you’ll see on the subway unless you’ve been there.
And it was cool to see the capital. I’m glad I went, but dang, it’s good to be home.