Hannah and I met up with her friend Cassi for brunch before making the relatively short drive to Mount Vernon from Washington, D.C. We crossed from the Maryland side of the Potomac River to the Virginia side and drove through beautiful forests and vegetation, a common feature on the east coast that is few and far between on the west coast. As we neared the estate, it became apparent that George Washington's house was going to be quite crowded. After driving around for at least 45 minutes, a good Samaritan finally pulled out of their parking spot right in front of us. We cheered and clapped and exclaimed, "It's a miracle!" Other tourists weren't so fortunate but, I'll admit to my shame, I didn't care at all so long as I got the chance to see my hero's home.
We bought our tickets for our scheduled tour of the mansion, then headed into the reception building to watch a biographical film of George Washington. The film and the tour was introduced by Pat Sajak (which was kind of random and slightly hilarious). After watching the cheesy yet informative film, we walked over to the Colonial Market & Fair which was taking place on the grounds that day. Vendors sold everything from glass witches' balls to quills. This was where I bought my one and only souvenir from the trip, a really awesome wooden spoon that I was super excited about (don't ask me why). We took pictures in front of the lawn at Mount Vernon (where every tourist and their dog asked me to take pictures of them) and then got in line to start our tour.
|A window in the reception building at Mt. Vernon.|
|Mt. Vernon in all its splendor.|
|(I wish I could take better selfies.)|
|Hannah, Cassi, and I waiting in line before the tour.|
|The view of the back side of the house.|
|The view of the Potomac River from the porch of Mt. Vernon. That scraggly looking tree was there when Washington lived at Mt. Vernon.|
|No historical site is complete without a few militiamen.|
|The tomb of George and Martha Washington.|
We rounded out the day with a meal at Ella's Pizza in Washington, D.C. There are quite a few people from my home ward in California who have recently moved out to the D.C. area and we thought it would be fun to meet up for dinner. So me, Hannah, Wes, Amy Lambert, Brittany Unalp Olsen, and her husband, Justin, got together for a little Clayton Valley 1st Ward Reunion. It was great to see everyone again!
Still more to come!