Saturday, February 28, 2009

A Day At The Smithsonian

Mookie and I went to the Smithsonian Museums today. She had a few specific exhibits that she wanted to see, so we did.

First up was the Museum of American History. They have an exhibit on First Lady Fashions, including several gowns and outfits worn by various First Ladies over the years. I really enjoy listening to Rachael talk about a subject that she loves, and at one point we were overtaken by a guided tour. About half of the people taking the tour were listening to Rachael talking to me rather than the tour guide. They got a complete explanation of late victorian dressmaking techniques, including the tidbit that the hoop skirts and trains were in style to show off that one was wealthy enough to afford that much extra fabric.

After that we visited the Star Spangled Banner. The original flag that flew over Fort McHenry has been restored and is on display. I identified a Congreve Rocket (of the "red glare" kind), and they had a big iron fragment from one of the bombshells fired by the British that night.

Next up was the Natural History Museum. A leisurely stroll through the Oceans and Mineral exhibits (missed the Hope Diamond though), the Insect Zoo and Reptile section, and we finally got to the Western Culture exhibit (Origins of...).

Finally we headed across the Mall to the Hirshhorn Sculpture Garden. It was chilly but we enjoyed it, tagging several "wtf" sculptures with new names as they struck us. My favorite was "Deboned Chicken".

Before we headed back to the metro, we walked around the building to see "Crouching Spider". Whoah. I do believe that I could spend a day doing nothing but watching people's reactions as they come across this 9 foot tall spider-ish figure. Amazing piece of artwork, and I'm sad that it will only be displayed until March before being returned to the museum that owns it.

We're home now, planning on a pot of homemade soup for dinner and wondering how much snow tonight's storm is gonna dump on us.


Anonymous said...

I LOVE the Smithsonian. I want to take my boys to DC, just to spend a few days touring it.

Ted said...

You will need a few days to do it right!

Victor said...

I suspect Mookie either screamed blue bloody murder, or fainted, upon sighting the giant paooki.