sprite writes
broodings from the burrow

June 26, 2018

midsummer weekending
posted by soe 1:22 am

It felt like this weekend moved so fast, in part because of a packed Saturday. I stopped by the library to pick up books and summer reading prizes and the Baltic Midsummer Festival in the Circle, where the embassies of Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania, were celebrating the arrival of summer.

Latvian Folk Singers

Baltic Midsummer Festival Wreathmaking

There were oak-leaf and flower wreaths (which were being made as fast as the young women could wind the florist wire) to try on, pamphlets to pick up, dancing and singing to enjoy, and cheese to sample.

I headed out to the country to pick blueberries and stopped by the grocery store and the hardware store on the way home.

Rudi and I were going to head over to the production of Twelfth Night, but the skies opened up and we decided not to crowd into the church along with everyone else who was already down there for the performance. Instead we decided to check out a relatively new Mexican place not too far away (it was a perfectly fine little spot and we’ll likely stop in again in the future, although probably on a Tuesday when tacos are only $2).

We then headed down to the Mall where we discovered I had misunderstood the Solstice Saturday event and instead of only three of the museums staying open until midnight, they all were.

We started at American History, where we walked through the Star-Spangled Banner exhibition [N.B. to Karen: Your family’s story is plastered all over it. I think it might have been under construction/restoration the last time you were down.]. We checked out some of the new additions to the collection before heading downstairs to find the tv show displays and an exhibition on food.

Star-Spangled Banner

Quilt Made by Japanese-Americans Interred during WWII

Grover and Prairie Dawn and Captain Kangaroo's Bunny Rabbit

Finally, 2018 is the 50th anniversary of the Poor People’s Campaign. I knew it was a thing; I just never realized how huge it was or how long it lasted. The second shot shows a model of Resurrection City, where thousands of people camped for six weeks on the Mall. (For locals, the Lincoln Memorial is at the left; the Reflecting Pool is at the top; the Washington Monument is at the right; and Independence Avenue is at the bottom. The round building in the middle is the District of Columbia War Memorial.) Think Occupy D.C. at McPherson Square, but on massive steroids. Eventually weeks of rain, muddy conditions, and health concerns were used as an excuse for officials to forcibly evict everyone and dismantle the village.

Poor People's Campaign

Resurrection City

MLK Quote: The Ultimate Tragedy

We headed across the Mall to the Arts & Industries Building, where some of the By the People Festival art installations could be seen. There were fabric hangings and cubes you stuck your head into that reminded me of the parachutes we played with in elementary school gym class, and a memorial to a picnic (the “clouds” are actually masses of recycled takeaway containers):

Memorial to a Picnic

Cube Things


By the People Festival Exhibition

It was after 11 when we left there, and we decided that since we’d never been to Natural History, except to see films at their IMAXX theater, we’d head back to the north side of the Mall.

The butterfly pavilion was closed (the butterflies were sleeping everywhere inside), so we peeked in on the animal exhibitions from the second floor balconies and the perused the gem collection (the Hope Diamond is really quite disappointing).

A Night at the Museum


By comparison, Sunday was quiet. I went to the farmers market, the garden (where we planted more than a dozen tomato seedlings I had growing on my office windowsill), the pool, and the park.

But now I need another weekend to recover from my weekend!

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