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01 August, 2007

The White House or, bust!

Part of the "Stars and Stripes" bus tour of Washingon DC is 4 hours of "free range" at the National Mall. Of course there is plenty to see at the National Mall but, what visit to Washington DC would be complete without a visit to the White House. Here are a couple of points about walking from the middle of the National Mall to the White House in the month of August;
  1. The walking distance is approximately a mile and a half.
  2. Washington DC enjoyed the hottest August on record.
  3. A mile and a half cab ride back to the National Mall costs $10.
Another point worth noting is that on a tourist map, the White House seems to be just a block away. But you should know that the block is The Department of the Treasury. Never underestimate the size of the Treasury Department. Phew!

So we made it to the White House and found the walkway on the southside blocked off by security people who suggested that we try the Pennsylvania Avenue vantage point. Off we go to the north side of the White House. But before we can get any photographs here - the security teams shooed everyone away. The three photographs below are all we managed on our hike to the White House from the National Mall.

We suppose the reason for security moving everyone away was due to Gordon Brown's visit.

I'm sure we'll never know. But I do know that I'm never going back to the White House - at least on foot.

The security people - as you would imagine - have very scarey guns at the ready. If you peer closely at the left side of the image you'll see what I mean.

This last photo was taken across Pennsylvania Avenue after everyone was asked to leave. We snapped this picture and hopped into a Cab to get back to the Smithsonian for the rest of our "free range" time.

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