Thanksgiving Travelog #13
Washington, DC. Saturday, 26 Nov 2016. 2am.
As I mentioned in my previous entry, our next visit on our impromptu late-night walking tour was the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial. The FDR is a low-key monument, alongside the Tidal Basin opposite the Jefferson memorial (see map in previous entry). It's one of the newer monuments in Washington, DC, dating back not quite 20 years yet; it was only dedicated in 1997. As such it's one Hawk and I haven't really spent time at before because our time together in the city predates it. Thus we made a point of including it on this walk.
Unlike the grand, classical Greek architecture of the Jefferson and Lincoln memorials, the FDR is basically just a set of open-air displays. And the exhibits are as much about the times and the reception of FDR's leadership as they are about the man himself. For example, a display about FDR's famous "fireside chats" shows ordinary people listening, transfixed, to early radios rather than depicting the president orating at a microphone. Then there's the soup line exhibit about the Great Depression:
See if you can spot which of these is not like the other. ;-)
The placque behind the men on the wall reads, "The test of our progress is not whether we add more to the abundance of those who have much, it is whether we provide enough for those who have too little." Words we must still heed today.
As we walked through these exhibits we were surprised by the number of people sharing the area with us at 2am. In years past the sight of people shuffling around semi zombie-like at 2am in Washington DC would have been grounds for wariness. But here everybody shuffling around semi zombie-like had their noses buried in a green glow emanating from their hands. They were all on their cell phones. Playing Pokemon, from the looks of it. In fact, out of about two dozen in the park at this late hour, Hawk and I were evidently the only people there to look at the displays.