Days 96-97 – Washington, DC

We’re spending the weekend in the city because we have tickets to a Nationals baseball game that we bought at the beginning of the season.

The weather, which had been unseasonably hot, has turned into fall weather: cloudy with highs in the 70s, a breeze and cooler nights. This does not bode well for my wardrobe. Although I pulled a bunch of cool-weather clothes from our pod, I have put most of them in a box to be shipped to Asheville. I have no jacket, just two sweaters and two pairs of pants. I have traveled all summer with a soft-shell jacket, using it occasionally in the evenings and more than once to cover my feet in the tent but have left it in our Asheville storage unit, for some reason thinking that I couldn’t possibly need it on this leg of the trip.

I guess we’ve gotten so used to it being summer, we just weren’t thinking about fall and cooling temperatures when we grabbed our stuff for Annapolis and this weekend.

Of course, we’re going to an evening game with temperatures in the 50s, so I head out from our downtown hotel to find a jacket. It’s burning me up that if I’d only left my soft shell in the car, or pulled my other fall jacket from the pod, or kept one of the sweaters or coats I’m shipping to Asheville, I wouldn’t have to buy a jacket that I don’t really need. But I know me and I can’t sit through a 50-degree baseball game without a protective layer. Even just walking around today, I got cool with my two sweaters on. I will definitely be cold and miserable sitting for a few hours after the sun goes down.

I manage to find a wind-proof jacket with a hood, something I can wear again. While I’m at it, I pick up a cheap pair of leggings I can wear under my pants. Better to be safe.

It’s a lot of fun to be back in our home ballpark (and properly dressed for the weather). We enjoy the game right up to the last inning, when the Nats give up four runs, blowing a one-run lead to lose the game. The Nats are far enough ahead in their division that they’ve already secured a spot in the playoffs but it’s still disappointing to see them lose.

We spend most of the rest of our time in DC pretty quietly. We catch dinner downtown at Zaytinya and two short plays at the Shakespeare Theater. I make a pit stop at Red Velvet Cupcakery for a snack.

We make a trek to the National Building Museum, which is not part of the Smithsonian and so doesn’t get the crowds that many other DC museums do. Mostly Walt and I just like the building itself. It was designed and built post-Civil War as the national pensioners’ building. The huge brick building was advanced for its time, boasting fresh-air intake ducts, lots of skylights and clerestory lights, as well as extra-wide and shallow stairs because so many of the people employed originally had been injured in the war, among other embellishments.

This part of the city seems pretty quiet until we wake up on Monday morning. All the many people who work at the nearby U.S. Department of Labor, D.C. courts and other office buildings are back to work, which is our signal to head out.

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