Monday, September 12, 2022

Heading North - Washington, DC

Stop number three on our trip north was 580 miles to Washington, DC. We took two days because we don't like traveling that far in one day and we needed to do laundry. Driving I-95 is always an adventure and this trip was no different. Vehicles flying passed us at 90 mph followed by huge tie ups moving at a couple mph.  
We have been to DC many times and never tire of going there. There is always something new to see and do. We have stayed in different parts of the city over the years and this time stayed at the Zena Hotel on Thomas Circle. The hotel was interesting with the theme being all about women.
The woman's theme starts at check in. Nanc would have loved a couple pairs of these heels.
A wall of influential women.
Women protesting for rights. Unfortunately, this older picture of protest is still relevant today.  
RGB is truly missed.  This wall mural was made out of pegs.
It was super hot, 98°, so as we walked we searched out the shady side of the street. Here is a church on Thomas Circle. 
One of our favorite museums is the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery. You never know what new exhibits they will have. This being the 50th anniversary of  Watergate, portraits of those who shamed themselves protecting a criminal president are appropriate.
Ironically, as I write this, 9/9/22  is the day Ford pardoned Nixon establishing the idea that presidents are held to a different standard than those who do their dirty work. I wonder who will be on the poster 50 years from today. History seems to be repeating itself.
The first four lady Supreme Court Justices. I guess they will be adding another woman soon.
The America's Presidents Gallery is always interesting. 
An interesting Rosa Parks statue is part of The Struggle for Justice exhibit. 
There were 42 portraits of 2700 submitted for The Outwin 2022: American Portraiture Today exhibit. All the artwork was done by artists during the Covid shutdown.  Cherry, drawn on a cherry box, was my favorite. You can go to this link to see all of them and vote for your favorite. 
Refugees Crossing the Border Wall in South Texas was also very current and powerful. The portrait museum is always a worthwhile stop.
An often missed great view of the city is the tower in the Old Post Office Building. Even though the building was remodeled into a hotel, the tower is still run by the park service. The name of the hotel has been changed to protect the guilty.
Looking into the atrium lobby of the hotel.
Looking down Pennsylvania Avenue to the Capitol.
The Potomac River, Washington Monument and African American Museum from the tower. 
The Smithsonian Castle on the mall.
The mall, US Capitol and Library of Congress. The lack of tall buildings gives DC some of the best city views in America.
Nanc soaking up some color and enjoying the shade on a hot day.
Another often overlooked stop is the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. The art here is usually off the beaten path and this exhibit by Laurie Anderson was no different. 
There were a couple rooms covered with messages about today's society. Strange but very interesting. 
On the top floor of the Hirshhorn various panels of mixed media artwork by Mark Bradford called Pickett's Charge. It is based on the Cyclorama painting in Gettysburg that depicts the final charge of that battle. This panel, Two Men, is soldiers in the battle.   
This is the High-Water Mark, the high point of the Confederate rebels in their quest to continue their economic system based on the enslavement of humans. The chaos of the work is a strong representation of what the battle must have been like for those who fought there. 
Another ongoing exhibit is Barbara Kruger's Belief+Doubt. There are many powerful words in this work.
As it says Whose?
At the rooftop bar at the Zena. As we always do, we had a great time in DC. It is a wonderful place with great restaurants, museums, monuments or just people watching.

While I still have one more post about our trip north we are finishing up our stay in WashPa and will be heading south this weekend.

Thursday, August 25, 2022

Heading North - Savannah, Georgia

After a week in Orlando our next stop was 290 miles north to Savannah, Georgia for four days. We were there during our years on the road, but we never stayed downtown. We stayed at the Drayton from where we could walk the historic parts of town. On our first day we took the Old Savannah Tours hop on hop off tour to get an idea of what places we wanted to tour.
The Savannah Cotton Exchange was established in 1876. It set the price of the cotton that was shipped to New York and London. The building was opened in 1887 and used until 1951 when the exchange closed. The building does not have a foundation as the city required that the Drayton Street ramp to the river had to remain open under the building.  
At a couple stops on the tour someone would come on the bus to explain the local history. This lady told us about the Lucas Theatre.
Savannah born song writer Johnny Mercer. He composed over 1400 songs, Moon River being the most famous. He was a co-founder of Capitol Records.
We did not tour the Prohibition Museum, but liked the car.

A tribute to Girl Scout founder Juliette Gordon Low.
Former Girl Scout, Nancy walking by Low's birthplace.
Sculpture honoring the soldiers of African decent who fought in the Battle of Savannah during the American Revolutionary War. The drummer, Henri Christophe, was a leader of the Haitian war for independence in 1804.  
The Telfair Museums include Telfair Academy (pictured here), Jepson Center and Owens-Thomas House.
Bird Girl, sculpted in 1936 by Sylvia Shaw Judson, is in the Academy. It was cast six times, this one was in the Bonaventure Cemetery. It became famous when it appeared on the cover of the novel Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. So many people came to the cemetery that in 2014 it was lent to the Telfair Museum.
Savannah city hall overlooks the river on the other side.
It's very neat seeing the biggest container ships, like we saw in the Panama Canal, come up the river to Savannah. When the city was founded the river was 12 feet deep. Is was deepened to 42 feet allowing ships carrying 4,600 containers to pass. Then, to accommodate the bigger ships coming through the new Panama Canal locks it was made 47 feet deep. This allows ships carrying 8,700 containers to come to Savannah.
The Waving Girl is to honor Florence Martus who, from 1887 to 1931, waved at all arriving ships in search for her lost lover. Ships began to return the wave with a blast from their horn. 
River Street is the old warehouse district that is now shops, bars and restaurants. Very neat overlooking the river.
Dinner view from a restaurant overlooking the river. Up close and personal with big ships.
One of Savannah's 22 squares. They started with four squares in the 1733 plan for the city designed by James Oglethorpe. As the city grew each square was a ward of the city.
Each square is 200 feet north to south and 100 to 300 feet east to west. The trees make walking the city very comfortable, even on a steamy hot summer day. 
The grave of Tomo Chi Chi of the Creek tribe was a good friend of the British and has been called the co-founder of Savannah.
We toured the Owens - Thomas House. It shows the contrast of how the slaves lived and the life of the slavers. This building is the slave house. 
This is a slave bedroom.
This is the main house, the first in the city to have indoor plumbing.
This is a bedroom in that house.
The African-American Family Monument commemorates their contribution to the city and the "invisible story of the trans-Atlantic slave trade". 
The World Apart honors those who served in WWII.
Jepson Center had a special exhibit Blow Up: Inflatable Contemporary Art. I guess art is in the eye of the beholder.
More blow up art.
The was a special exhibit, The Art of William O. Golding a Savannah native who was tricked to board a ship as a child and spent 49 years at sea. Many of his works are ports he visited in East Asia as well as Savannah.
We enjoyed our stay in Savannah. Staying downtown made it easy to walk the city and the trees in the squares made it tolerable even with the heat and humidity.