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A Capitol Fourth

a capitol 4th stripLet me begin this entry by saying this: Going into DC for the 4th of July is FANTASTIC! Everyone who lives in/near the city should definitely celebrate the 4th in DC at least once in their life.

Our July 4th started off with a metro ride, which by the way is easy if you start your day off relatively early like the girls and I did. Immediately after arriving to the mall we found ourselves in the heart of the parade route start. It included a mishmash of multicultural parade sections, festive floats, patriotic parade balloons and an interesting (to say the least) combination of music that went along with each section.

We were easily able to find a spot on the grass for our picnic and nibbled away on the yummy food we’d each brought along. Picnic-time also meant sunbathing-time for us (as did the rest of the day ๐Ÿ™‚ ). The weather was gorgeous, absolutely perfect!

After picnicking we decided to walk farther down the mall to make our way closer to the Capitol where we then grabbed a spot in line to gain admission to the free concert. Let me tell you, the day just kept getting better and better. WOW! We saw THE Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin, in concert and honey, she’s still got it! The others we celebrated with included our host Jimmy Smits, Barry Manilow (insert Copacabana music here ;)) along side the National Symphony Orchestra, Natasha Bedingfield, the cast of Jersey Boys (Side Note: the show will be coming to DC soon, Yay!), Michael Feinstein, Andrew von Oeyen and The Sesame Street gang. Oh my goodness, the Sesame Street characters were so unbelievably ADORABLE and, even at my age, were so fun to see; it brought me straight back to childhood. “Sunny day, sweepin’ the clouds away, on my way to where the air is sweet…”happy 4th strip 2

These photos were taken after the concert. The Capitol shot is right before we left to start running, and I mean RUNNING like crazy girls to get past the trees and down the mall so that we had a good view of the fireworks. We had to jump over netting that blocked of sections of the mall to take short cuts โ€“ sorry officer! We werenโ€™t the only ones who did this though and the police watched us like “oh well”. ๐Ÿ™‚ The fireworks started 10 minutes earlier than we thought they would so we were panicked and didn’t want to miss them. All of the running paid off, as you can see the fireworks were BEAUTIFUL! It was an amazing feeling to be standing on the mall surrounded by a sea of thousands of people – very patriotic feeling!
Oh my goodness! When people say the 4th is crazy in DC, they must be talking about trying to get home. Our excitement was completely drained from us once we were packed like sardines in a line to get into the metro station. Some people were pushing and shoving and any patriotism and respect they had for their neighbor disappeared and it was every man for themselves, OH DEAR! The girls and I were pretty calm…we knew it was going to be crazy! We made our way to the station (after being shoved around a bit and dodging a couple of fights – come on now!), hopped on the blue line, transferred to the orange line and through the entire experience sucked up the insanely packed ride. After all we’d just had the best Fourth of July ever and why ruin it by being grumpy and inpatient. Despite the tightness of the metro we made incredible timing and got home before midnight – not too shabby!

Thank you girls for joining in on braving DC for the 4th (all 11 hrs or so haha) with me! I had a fabulous time and hope that y’all did as well!