So, after a long drive through several thunderstorms, (one of which was severe enough that it forced us to stop for the night just 3 hours south of our destination) we made it to Washington D.C. and Melinda's rockin Bachelor pad. Because we had to stop, we arrived there in the early afternoon... not early enough to really hit any museums, but early enough to hit a few monuments. We dragged Melinda with us and started at one of my favorites, the Einstien Memorial, where Pint Size proceeded to have the first of what would be many freak-outs on the trip. Apparently, the kid has issues with large semi-lifelike statues. I still managed to get a nice picture of Silverfox and short stuff in the old man's lap:
Sadly for Pint Size, the next stop on our little night tour was the Lincoln Memorial, with an even bigger and more lifelike statue. Silverfox and Pint Size took the elevator, but Short Stuff insisted on running up the stairs. Sadly, it was "Come on, Dad", not "Come on MOM" that he said before sprinting away.
I'm a good sport about such things when it comes to Short Stuff, but I was huffing and puffing as we reached the statue. After Mel and Silverfox joined us at the top, I plopped down my sorry butt at the top of the stairs and enjoyed the view with the boys while Silverfox took pictures:
Mel was sitting just to the right of Short Stuff, but she hates getting her picture taken. This did not stop my wife, however.... the next morning, Mel took Pint Size down to the car for us, and he kept nearly clocking her in the head with her own Nunchucks... it was too cute not to get a picture of:
He for some reason formed a bond with these instruments of deadly martial arts. We're thinking of changing Pint Size's nickname from "Charlie" to "Chuck" after Chuck Norris.
That's right... the boogeyman checks under his bed for Pint Size. Pint Size is so tough he can eat a Rubick's Cube and poop it out sovled. Pint Size doesn't stand up... he forced the earth down.
But I digress... The next day was Father's day, and it marked the first Father's day I got to spend with the boys. (Usually the Bio-Dads pull rank on Father's day...) Short Stuff and I started out with getting an idea of the size of the solar system by following a path with Kiosks spaced out in scale on the national Mall by the Smithsonian. Here we are at Saturn.
Short Stuff felt that the Solar system was way too far to walk, but in reality it was only a few blocks, and it brought us right to the Air and Space Museum. For those that haven't been to NASM in a few years like myself, let me tell you they have upped their game significantly. Thanks to their upsurge in popularity from the Night at the Museum Movies, they have added a lot of interactive kids stuff to appeal to the younger crowd. It Certainly worked on Short Stuff, who got to fly a plane:
And study the intricacies of gravity:
Pint Size freaked out at almost every room we went into, though. Our theory is that large unfamiliar objects in dimly lit, crowded spaces are one of his triggers. Here we are at the enrance to the "Planets" exhibit, where he had the MOTHER of all freak outs the second we crossed the threshold:
I figure he was just pissed off at the whole "Dwarf Planet Pluto" thing. Anyhow, the boy really needed some fresh air, so I took him for a little walk:
Go ahead, judge me. I still think that the child leash is the greatest invention ever. Short Stuff amused himself chasing pigeons, while Mel filled the kid's head with some bullcrap about homeless pigeons having to panhandle for change. She started to go on a bit about Vietnam Vet pigeons before Shorty lost interest.
After that, we went to the surprisingly disappointing Museum of American History. It had some more interactive stuff for the kids, but they have scaled their "American Culture/TV and Movie Memoribilia" section WAY back, (Combining it with the sports Memoribila, no less) and that was a big part of why we went there. I asked a Museum Worker, and she said that rather than display everything they have like they used to, they now rotate the exhibit every few months. As a result, you may have to visit a few times a year to see Fonzie's Jacket, a Phaser from Star Trek, Archie Bunker's Chair, or Ali's Boxing Gloves.
We were all pretty beat after that, and went back to Mel's to rest up for the drive to NYC the next day, but here we were only a few days into our road trip and Short Stuff had gotten to touch a cloud and a piece of the moon... Silverfox and I wondered how we were going to top it...