Tag: national archives

Welcome to my personal blog! THAOIE.com came about because I wanted a place to share my personal life and the random thoughts I have that are longer than 144 characters (twitter) without mixing it with the wedding business side of things on THAOVU.com. Follow along on my life adventure here where I can guarantee beautiful images and complete randomness.

Back in early April we visited D.C. to see the cherry blossoms and my immune system couldn’t have been at its lowest defense. I was sick the entire time, going through cough drops like crack cocaine, hoping to sleep through an hour at a time at night without being awakened by horrible cough attacks. It eventually developed into runny noses coupled with cough attacks. I tried so hard to push through each day to enjoy what I could with the very little energy I had. The weather in D.C. wasn’t cooperative either–rainy and windy. With wet jeans on in the middle of the Washington Mall I was at a point of regretting the trip. I hated being me and it wasn’t helping my fellow travelers either. I ended up going to bed early most nights while Rob and Thanh leaned on each other for a good time.

After getting to see and process the images we took, I am truly happy the trip went on as planned. We made the best of the circumstances and made it our own. Thanks, Rob and Thanh, for taking care of me and putting up with my sickness and mood swings. You guys are the best! Now…onto the awesome cherry blossoms, 3,800 trees gifted to our country by Japan.

If this were a sunny day this spot would be swarming with visitors. Because it was raining it was completely empty for us to shoot. Looking back I don’t know what I’d choose…a sunny day full of people or a rainy day with no one around.

Wouldn’t you say Thanh was lucky to be my model on this trip? I almost wish I had my own photo taken too.

Well, maybe my photo taken at this angle sitting on the bench with Rob. This wet rainy scene is so calming.

View of the Jefferson Memorial from across the Tidal Basin.
The MLK, Jr. Memorial was still being worked on when we visited.

Thanh is just too lucky to be my easy subject.

View of the Washington Monument from the Tidal Basin. Look at all the cherry blossoms!!

We also visited a number of sites including the Korean War Memorial. These soldiers are larger than life!

Here’s the WW II Memorial and Lincoln Memorial.

This, to me, is such a powerful way of saying “in yo face, slavery!”

Abraham Lincoln statue was a lot bigger than I had imagined.

The Vietnam War Memorial.

We drove across the Potomac River to Virginia to visit Arlington National Cemetery.

Rob with the JFK eternal flame.

We witnessed the changing of the guards at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.
Can’t believe they stand guard 24/7.

Of course we refueled in between all this excitement. Falafel’s were super yummy. Ethiopian food wasn’t too shabby either.

Unfortunately the Obama’s didn’t come out to see us, but we did ride bikes around D.C. for a bit.

Me next to my “sweet tea”. Got him for $1! ;)
D.C. subways are so clean.

After this we made our way to Philly for the 2nd part of the trip. Rob and I had to make our way back to D.C. 2 days later for our flight home anyways so we spent a few additional hours cramming in as much site seeing as possible. The weather was a huge contrast from just days earlier. It was now 85 degrees. I was wearing tights and a tank dress biking around town like it was mid summer.

I even got to see the blossoms with sunlight and blue skies!!

We stood outside Ford’s Theatre where Lincoln was assassinated.
The most exciting part of the trip (for me) was getting to see the original documents of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. It was so amazing to see in person that it’s hard to describe the feeling. The level they take to preserve the fading documents is mind boggling. I now have a much deeper respect for our country and its founding fathers.

In the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, like any girl, I was super stoked to see gowns on display worn by First Ladies to inaugural balls. They even have a gown worn by Martha Washington! How crazy is that?!
I didn’t have 6 images to balance the collage below so I included Rick Flair.

I leave you with Lincoln’s actual top hat!

The main purpose of this trip was to see the cherry blossoms. If it weren’t for them I would have probably never visited our nation’s capitol and never gained what I did from it. Thanks, Japan, for such a beautiful site we get to experience 2 weeks out of the year, but thank you mainly for bringing me out to learn more about my country and come away with a deeper appreciation for it all. I feel like a more complete American citizen from this trip.

Philly part of the trip will be blogged about soon…not sure when yet.

Trips