Last Day in DC
Sunday morning dawned (not that I was there to see the dawn… I was still very much asleep at dawn) and I head to see my good college friend Doug, his lovely wife Emily, and their special cat Elmo. I had the usual joys of traveling by subway with luggage, although the DC metro on Sunday morning is much less crowded than the Beijing subway at rush hour… which is when I generally find myself trying to schlep luggage around Beijing. (I hope my flight into Seoul gets in early enough that I can miss the worst of rush hour in Seoul with a hiking pack on…)
So Doug, Emily, and I left my stuff locked away so Elmo could eat any of it and headed out to brunch. After brunch we took a lovely walk to Dumbarton Oaks Gardens and Museum. We strolled through the sprawling park somewhat agog at the opulence. We tried to place ourselves there in the 1920s having lavish parties in the carefully crafted gardens. It was also hot, so there was some fantasizing about hopping into the pool, but we restrained and decided that we would probably be asked to leave at that point.
After the garden, we went up to the museum in the house. The name Dumbarton Oaks had had a familiar ring to it, but until I saw the signs in the “Music Room” I could place it as the locations of the meetings between the US, USSR, UK, and Republican China that laid the ground work for the creation of the United Nations. While the museum is only open a few hours a day (2-5 Tuesday through Sunday), it is definitely worth the excursion. The owners (whose name escapes me now) were major collectors of Byzantine and Meso-American artifacts during a time when those were not styles of art that were particularly “appropriate” for collecting. The Byzantine art is phenomenal and the collection of work from Mexico to Peru is stunning (and housed in a very tasteful building from the 1960s). After the museum, we walked into Georgetown for a ice cream (and pushed dinner off until WAY later than this country boy is used to.)
An illumination of one of the gosple writers at his task. (I don’t remember which one sorry.) But it is an amazing example of Byzatine illumination.
This is Elmo… or the male incarnation of Lady Godiva.
I have just arrived in Korea. I am super tired because I haven’t slept in 23 hours. Sorry about any typos.