Monday, September 24, 2012

Washington Walkaround

Can a city offer too much -  to the point of making its citizens immune? Joys of an early autumn weekend brought this sober, unquantifiable thought to mind in inner city Washington. Not only were the two  'red' sport teams in full flower on their respectively well endowed turfs but the Library of Congress and other Congressionally-endorsed institutions were sponsoring shows of note. The seldom heralded Washington Navy Yard keeps its museum open on a regular basis, so it isn't correct to call their permanent installation a 'show.' But it is a spectacularly well endowed history (and hagiography) of the U.S. Navy. Beyond its doors is the scenic walk -  the Yards Park and beyond - along the Anacostia River. The boardwalk stretches from the Nationals door to the 11th St. bridge, past several water works (all notably free of much signage except for the usual legalese, although thankfully under cover). Several long tendon-tingling blocks away northward lay the LOC's annual Book Fair. Long live the oral tradition! But before that came the appeal of  coffee and croissants in the Paul Cafe (801 Pennsylvania Ave. NW ) while viewing the tumultuous marvels of a Latino heritage parade celebration, as colorful a sight as any that could ever be seen on that avenue of presidents.  Banging clashing drums and cymbals, horns and high heels.The  spoken words of authors standing at podiums under high white tents calmed itchy minds and cellphone fingers: this was a celebration of civility. With so many citizens engrossed in literacy, it was easy to slip away underground into the blessed cover of silence at the Smithonian's Museum of African Art full of mosaics, photography, and sculpture.  All worlds covered in a few miles distance from home.


  1. What a terrific advert for DC! This posting sums up so charmingly what we all try and tell friends when they ask: what is it about DC you love so much?

  2. It was a gorgeous day for such a hike too. I have GOT to try Paul's.