What a week here in DC. I was a bit sick for a few days, mostly, I think, due to my lack of sleep. I'm mostly over that now, which is so nice because being sick at the workplace is really miserable.
The week commenced wonderfully with a lunch at the JW Marriott. Kirk Smith, my uncle, and his wife, Joan, were in town for some conferences (Uncle Kirk is the Sheriff of Washington County). We met at the hotel and they treated me to lunch, which was completely undeserved. ate lunch. Fortunately my cousin Kenny, his wife Kristin, and his two kids, Bailey and Corbin were able to join us. It was such a treat. I haven't seen them for years and it was so good to be able to talk to them about life and reminisce about the past. What a wonderful family and what a great experience to see them here.
The State of the Union address was given this week by President Obama. I never had realized just how colossal this thing was to the nation. It was bigger than General Conference to Mormons! The metro was desolate as we hurried home to see the President speak. Needless to say, there were some pretty colorful calls the next day at work with frustrated Americans looking for someone to do something. For some reason people from all corners of the country call our office expecting huge results, and I do my best to act like I'm interested in what they are saying. And I always seal their satisfaction by saying, "I'll be sure to pass that on." And I do...sometimes.
I gave my first tour this week to two gentlemen from Utah. Even though I realized half way to the Capitol that I had forgotten some keys notes I had made on my desk, I didn't flinch with nervousness. I punched that tour right in the face as I explained that the Statue of Liberty could fit inside the Rotunda without touching the top and that an empty tomb lay underneath the midpoint of the city. No sweat.
On Friday the 26th I was privileged to go to the White House again. I had gone the week before with some friends from the U, so I knew what was offered there. This time was through my work, so Natalia (the other intern) and I went and stood in the freezing cold. Shortly after going through two security checkpoints, we were in the entrance of the east wing looking at pictures. We were told that President Obama would be taking off in Marine One, and he had invited us on the back lawn to see him take off. So that's what we did! It was bitter cold, and the hurricane-level winds from the helicopter made things even worse. Sure enough, 10 minutes later the President came walking out. He gave a few waves to the crowd of 50 or so, hopped on the plane and took off. It was pretty neat and I'm glad I didn't turn down my second opportunity in one week to go to the White House.
Yesterday it snowed for a few hours, leaving about 3 to 4 inches of white powder on the ground. That somewhat discouraged us from going out to see some sites, so it was a lazy day to say the least. We eventually did decide to go see the National Archives, and along the way we found a truly enjoyable squirrel burrowing in the snow. He made threats against Ricky, but eventually they became friends. The following video is the evidence of the encounter:
It was awe-inspiring to see the super-old documents at the National Archives. The Magna Carta was there. The Magna Carta. I wasn't aware of that. That thing was written way before the Constitution or The Declaration of Independence, both of which were there. The rotunda, as the call it, where they keep the documents looked remarkably familiar to me. I then realized that I recognized the location from the movie National Treasure. I wanted to say, "I'm going to steal The Declaration of Independence," but thought better after catching the suspecting guards eye.
Last night there was a little bbq/party at Apt. 610. Amazing brawts.
Did I mention church was canceled today because of the snow? Living in Utah my entire life has never gifted me with a snow day, and my first month in DC does after a week snowstorm. Pitiful. Weak members in DC...(just kidding. Kinda...)
Here's a few pictures from the week. I'll get Obama up later. I promise that the last photo was not planned. It was not intentional in any way. We came home from work, talking about the day while changing, and when I emerged from the closet and he from the room, Ricky looked at me and said, "You did that on purpose, didn't you?" And I again promise, I had no idea. Picture perfect moment.