I got distracted by the Washington Monument. I mean, who wouldn’t? I took a picture with my cell phone and captioned it “Pshhh, men. Typical.” I found a police officer and asked him, “Which way to the National Archives?” He directed me back from whence I’d been walking. I mean, there were arrows pointing to the White House, there were arrows pointing to the National Aquarium, the Ronald Reagan Building, the Smithsonian, not a single one pointing to the National Archives. So, I walked back. Small pretzel detour, eyeballed the Internal Revenue Service, thunk some good thoughts to Ms Kagan at the DoJ, and crossed 9th and Constitution Ave wondering how in the world it’s taken me this long to do so.
Finally, I was there. It was a little late in the day, so the line was fairly heinous but, without the glaring midday sun, we stalwart many couldn’t benefit from queue attrition through overheated impatience. And so we all waited, treated to a few low-flying helicopters and entertained by an audio tour available via recorded phone message. I learned all about the exterior of the building.
Finally, I was in. I darted politely to the rotunda, gave a slight nod to the Magna Carta, and listened to a very funny diatribe by one of the security guards about the movie National Treasure (FYI – no secret passages. Suuuuurrrre.). Then, the velvet rope was lifted.
Finally, I saw it. And I whispered – without humor or hesitation – you’re the reason I’m here. (more…)