Washington DC, our nation’s capital. Millions of visitors flock to DC to tour the city and that is what Dave, me, Hunter and Hayley did May 27th thru June 1st, 2010. We were excited, Hunter and Hayley were never there and the last time Dave and I were, was with the 4 older kids many years ago. Hunter was the most excited because he couldn’t wait to go see the Smithsonian Museums which he has talked about the last few years.
It was Memorial Day weekend and we knew it would be crowded but didn’t anticipate the 500,000 motorcycles plus riders that would be there. It was a nightmare. At times streets were closed to let the bikes pass. And in addition, the weather was sunny, hot and humid in the mid 80’s, not conducive to the massive amount of walking Dave was expecting out of all of us.
Our drive down was uneventful until I realized I printed out incorrect directions to the hotel and we wound up in the WORST section of DC. To say Dave was a bit annoyed is and understatement, plus Hunter and I were terrified! Hunter kept asking “are we going to survive this terrible drive?” I tried to say in a positive way “of course, no worries” but he noticed my white knuckels grasping the dashboard and didn’t believe me for a minute. After back tracking, we finally made it to our hotel. Whew, what a relief!
We stayed in the Grand Hyatt Hotel which was wonderful. The location was within walking distance to the Smithsonian, Capitol building, Washington Monument etc. Also, the Metro was under the hotel so this was very convenient as well. Once in our room we did one of Hayley’s all time favorite things……..order room service. Don’t ask me why this thrills her but it does. Hayley always orders mac and cheese with a coke. Whenever we stay in a hotel I get to sleep with Hayley and Dave with Hunter. Hayley and Hunter DO NOT do well sharing anything together let alone a bed. Now let me just say that when you sleep with either of them you sleep with about 10 stuffed animals as well. Yes, daddy lets them bring in the car whatever they want :). By the time Hunter and Hayley are asleep, Dave and I find ourselves sleeping (or attempting to sleep) on the very edge of the bed and with no blankets. I spend a good hunk of each night rolling Hayley to the other side of the bed only to find her back again.
Day 1: We went to the Museum of Natural History which Hunter LOVED. We took lots of pictures and Hunter took video of the entire museum. Hayley did ok, it was very loud and overwhelming so I had to sit with her in quiet areas once in a while. After the museum we went to the Botanical Gardens. We had never been there before and I really liked it. The kids on the other hand were bored AND wild. Hayley was in every water puddle, garden, water feature etc. She was soaked from head to toe! I gave up trying to stop her. Hayley looked quite a mess and we did draw curious and sometimes nasty stares from people. With living with Autism, Dave and I have grown thick skin and really don’t care what people think. Oh, on occassion if I am in a pissed mood I will comment, “don’t judge until you live in our shoes”, “be happy your child doesn’t have Autism” or even one time “F off”, I will tell you I wasn’t proud of that moment. We finally got back to the hotel where the kids changed into bathing suits and we brought them to the pool.
And what did we do again that evening? Order room service except this time Hayley ordered mac and cheese AND french fries………