Tuesday, September 2, 2014

DC Wins Over Maui Part III

Being all DC'd out after the first day of vacation/honeymoon/not-being-in-Hawaii, Eddie and I took a different turn and stayed in Virginia. First stop, breakfast! But first, we needed to get out of the parking garage, which proved to be no easy task. Our room card was supposed to let us get out, but we had to call for help. This valet came running down, actually willing and able to help us unlike our first encounter. He swept us out and we attempted to find a diner, which Eddie found on his phone, and when we pulled up, we found it was packed. To the lists! I have a list of restaurants you should eat at on a road trip, and in the southeast, it's Silver Diner.

Silver Diner is amazing. The selection is vast. The service is nice. The food is delicious. The flowers are Hawaiian.

Posting this on FB with the comment Aloha apparently is convincing enough that we were in Hawaii.
The dip is cinnamon something.  A delicious surprise.

The day turned out to be a list day because the next stop was from another list I have: great mini-golf places. Instead of going to Africa for a safari, we went to Virginia for a mini-golf safari complete with animatronics that continued to scare me even though I was predicting where they were. Some, however, I did not predict. They were very hidden and very terrifying. Yup, that's why I lost the game.

Terrified that this thing was going to move

Most terrifying
My proud husband

Here are some of our favorite moments in action.

Right before we recorded this, I ran away screaming, because that would surely work in the real jungle.

Then Eddie took a few swings at the golf range and I did not because golfing and back pain do not mix.

While he was golfing, I was finding other ways to amuse myself.

And then we were off!  Time to get back to nature.  I found a park that had hiking trails that were supposed to range from very easy to life-risking.  The plan was to stay away from the ones for which we had to risk our lives and romp around on the easy ones.  What we found was wonderful.  Waterfalls! Waterfalls!  Pretty pretty waterfalls!  And every few yards between the waterfalls were reminders that the Potomac is pretty but also deadly.  There were folks who climbed down on rocks near the water and across logs to get the perfect picture.  Two little older ladies passed by us and balanced boulder to boulder down to the kayak launch to take pictures at the shoreline.  The closest we came to doing that was standing on a tall rock way up high away from the water, so I guess we didn't come close at all.  Still, it was breathtaking.  We went onto all three overlooks and then began a trail.  As we walked and walked, we realized that eventually we'd  have to walk back, and not knowing how long the trail was or exactly where we were going (we were following red splotches on trees and rocks not knowing which trail they indicated) we turned back and had a doozy of a time finding the parking lot we'd parked in.  We could have used the red splotches for that.

See those people behind him?

We stayed safe here.

A nice lady took this picture after I offered to take her pic with her sons.

These are the crazies.

As close as we got

I really liked this tree.

Hawaii wherever we went
And onto the third list: the world's largest and oddest things. DC is home of the largest chair. Coming back from a long day of golfing and hiking in a ton of DC traffic made us tired, but see the largest chair we must. And we did. It was located in a nondescript part of town and everyone there seemed to not care that it was the largest chair. I guess when you see it every day, it's not so interesting.

Because we had the car in the heart of DC, we braved the traffic circles and made our way to the Jefferson Monument, which is accessible more easily by vehicle than walking. We drove around the basin several times until finding a close enough parking lot. We saw some other monuments and memorials along the way, and by the time we saw Jefferson, we again were both tired, achy, and hungry, so it was more like a get-this-thing-over-with than the exciting views of, say, Lincoln or the good old standby of the Washington Monument. Along the way, we found the Capitol and the ballpark.

This is the guy who wrote the thing.
Too tired to walk to the front, we went with the sideview.

Enough lists and monuments for a day, we headed back to the hotel. We were very much looking forward to dinner in the restaurant at the top of our hotel because it spins. It's the only one in the DC area. We were slowed by DC traffic and by the non-working room keys at the parking garage again. We went to the desk when we finally got in and the woman asked if we were checking out when we told her our keys were not working. We were like, no we just want to be able to use our car. She said she needed to reactivate the keys so she took the cards and put them in a magic machine and gave them back to us, saying that we wouldn't have a problem again.

In the room, we got all fancy to go to dinner. Eddie was concerned that he'd forgotten his nice shoes and had to wear his nice sneakers instead. When we got to the restaurant we laughed at his concern because people were there in shorts and tank tops. We were seated quickly and we both decided to celebrate by getting drinks. Like alcohol. I haven't had an actual full drink finished from top to bottom of anything in about a year, so I went with wine and Eddie got his standby of Kettle 1 and 7 and we toasted and I had a few sips and what with the wine and the spinning, I kept covering my eyes and holding my head, saying Everything is spinning! We watched the DC traffic. We saw the Pentagon and the Potomac. We saw everything light up as the sun started to set. We were there for about three revolutions because the service was so slow (though I found out later that the service is slow so that people could go around more than once--but really, twice would be a happy medium). I had a delicious salad and Eddie had a delicious burger and we both shared an okay dessert that took about 35 minutes to get so by the time it arrived, neither of us really wanted it. Plus, I was drunk. I had imbibed about 3/4 of the wine and was full on blasted. I downed the rest to wash down the cake and I was on a sugar high and I don't know how I stepped off of the rotating floor without toppling over, but I managed to get back to the room without falling.

Before going to bed, we uploaded our information to the travel insurance company to put in a claim for our vacation. We were glued to the weather channel every time we were near a tv. We'd even watched during dinner because that's what they had on. The rain was starting in Hawaii. In DC? Sunny skies! Only it was now nighttime, so it was dark skies. Dark drunken skies. Can't take me anywhere.

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