Weekend Journal

Every couple should have at least one thing in common. One thing, that no matter how disparate their temperments or interests, makes them friends and partners for life.

For Steve and I, it's always about travel. We are excellent travel companions. We both love exploring new places, eating new foods, and just plain roaming about. We will eat anything. We travel light. We will talk to anyone. We could very easily be this couple.

With the arrival of the little savages, we have to be content with tamer locales than we would like, but there's still much exploring and eating to be done. Last week, Steve found a cheapy deal on a hotel in Washington, DC. $99 for a downtown hotel with a pool for the kids.

The morning after Thanksgiving, we threw some things in a bag and drove off. Even luckier for us, we have two kids that also love to travel. As I was running around the house, shutting off the computers and locating the camera, they had already set themselves up in the backseat of the Toyota with their books, videos, and games. They had made little nests for themselves in the backseat and were waiting patiently for the car to shove off.

It was just a day and half trip, so we were very bad friends and didn't contact some old buddies or new buddies. We went to the Air and Space Museum, walked around the Mall, ate some excellent Chinese food, watched the workmen assembling the stage for inauguration. The city was nearly empty, so we had the museums to ourselves.

We also checked out the Phillips Gallery (thanks, Jim, for the tip). We loved the place, despite their reaction to children. The guards went into high alert mode when we entered. One guy nervously demanded that we hold Ian's hand for the entire time that we were in the museum. We had a guard within five feet of us for our entire visit. Sometimes more than one. For all art thieves, may I suggest using a family of antsy boys as a diversion.

And they needn't have bothered. The boys were completely uninterested in the art. We would walk into a room and they would promptly swoon on one of the benches in the center of the room waiting for the pain to end. I tried to coax Jonah into looking at the paintings, by asking him questions like "So, what do you think is going on here? If you were a judge, which painting would you give first price?" He didn't take the bait, so I went for the guilt. "Jonah, I do all sorts of things with you that I don't enjoy, so now it's your turn." He was shocked that I didn't enjoy our visit to see Thomas the Tank Engine.

It was a good trip. We saw enough of the museums to want more. As we were driving away, Steve saw a sign for an exhibit on Champlain and whined that he wanted to go. In rather random places, I got ideas for future projects and for rearranging the furniture in the living room. We were terribly impressed with DC's Metro system.

The boys did a great job of being portable, except for the time that Jonah was daydreaming and almost didn't make it off the subway on time. Or the time that Ian really wanted and expected X to happen, but Y happened instead. Minor stuff.

I have a very busy week ahead of me. The last throws of the semester and some paper deadlines. It was good to get away.


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6 thoughts on “Weekend Journal

  1. for us, it’s a common liking for Dan Quayle jokes. We’re stuck with each other – who else now tells them?


  2. We were in NYC this weekend, but definitely drop us a line if you’re coming back to DC. I think our boys would get along, too.
    We took the boys to the Metropolitan museum and they actually were pretty engaged. Focused on the armor and mummies, of course. And now I need to get The Mixed Up Files… from the library.


  3. I wish we enjoyed travel together.
    our weekend trip started off with tension only 60 miles in — one of the car keys had stayed at home. this does not seem tragic to 3/4 of the folks in the car, but one person will yell and feel misunderstood that he cannot enjoy a trip with only one car key and no spare. sigh. does not like others suggesting that he’s overreacting.


  4. My husband and I generally travel well together, too. What we can’t handle is getting ready. I get very stressed and snappish because our packing style is very different. My husband draaaaaaags it out forever–starts the night before and keeps running back for things. I like to spend as little time packing as possible. Conflict ensues.


  5. I’m glad you liked the Phillips. It does small well. It doesn’t have the depth of many museums, but what it has is of first quality. And its exhibitions are very good.
    Actually I misread your post and thought you were going to leave the kids with grandma while you and Steve took a short break — possibly I overinterpreted the staying in bed and eating room service bit :).


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