We went to Washington DC for a quick family vacation last week.
That’s a beautiful place….at least the places we let ourselves see.
I suppose that there are some rough areas in the city….but we just went to the museums and the mall.
Not the shopping mall…the big grassy mall.
The big “mall” with all the people.
Now, usually I don’t really like being in big crowds.
I don’t like to be crowded too much…or stand in line for a long time.
But these crowds were interesting.
We sat on a bench by the walking path that surrounds the mall, and I told Jenny, “I think that I heard 5 different languages in the 5 minutes we’ve been sitting here.”
There were so many different people from so many different countries.
It’s amazing that so many people are interested in our country.
It made me more interested in my country to see all the interest from other people from other places.
Some of the places that we tried to go weren’t really “kid friendly”, so we poked our heads in and then decided quickly that it wasn’t a good idea….and left after a quick look around.
It wasn’t worth the discomfort of trying to patiently look at all the great paintings in the National Gallery when little guy….and that’s no typo, just a name to protect the guilty….when “little guy” was pitching a fit about the boring museum.
But I got a good enough look around to realize how peaceful it made me feel to see how much importance people were willing to put into making something beautiful.
These buildings….the galleries and museums, the arboretum, etc…..were really beautiful.
They were really beautiful on a deep, deep level, too.
The materials used and the architecture….everything about them was really pleasant.
I guess that pleasant is a good word.
It was pleasing to me….it brought me pleasure.
It was uplifting for me to be able to see these buildings and the artwork in them.
It was a hopeful sign that people wanted to pay attention to something that was beautiful.
The “makers”….and the “appreciators”….making the world more pleasant.
That’s a good thing.
I guess that wherever you go you can appreciate efforts to make something better….from the really nice tinted concrete floor at the Travelers Rest Wal-Mart to a new countertop at a random McDonalds, there’s room to notice something that’s functional and considered….and I guess “beautiful” in its own way….and appreciate it.
These museums in Washington DC went a little farther than a new countertop, though.
Sometimes I think about how much there is in the world to see.
There are a lot of places and things in the world that are beautiful.
I don’t want my world to shrink in on us.
A trip like that…and the chance to see the beauty collected in a bunch of rooms in an amazing building, even if it’s only a quick glance before a childishly volcanic eruption changes the mood, gives me something to think about until the next time we can “expand our horizons.”
It builds hope.
Zoe took the picture….