Thursday, June 21, 2007

Stamp it up!

Years ago, I purchased a National Parks "Passport" on a family vacation to one of our nation's splendid national parks. I vowed to always have it at hand, just in case I stumbled over a national monument or memorial. I then promptly forgot it on the trip we took to Yellowstone a few years later so I bought another one.

Hoorah! I actually remembered to pack both of them for the DC trip and it became one of my goals for the week to locate the official stamp at the monuments and memorials we visited and ink the passports with the date of our visit .

I will say that this activity is more interesting to me than my children who still chide me about my detour to the location of the Golden Spike ceremony just so I could get my passport stamped. Hey, we were in "the neighborhood" and what were the chances we would ever be this close again? Imagine them joining those two railroads out there in the middle of NOWHERE. Amazing.

I don't remember exactly how many miles away from the interstate it was or how long it took to get there. I do remember it looked closer on the map and that is all I have to say.

By the way, the stamps for the Lincoln Memorial, The Mall, The Vietnam War Memorial, and the Korean War Memorial are ALL in the bookstore at the Lincoln Memorial which is, imperceptibly, squirreled away in the far corner of the statue level, NOT down in the exhibit area. Believe me, I just saved you forty-five minutes of hunting for it.

This also gives one the excuse to enter ALL the visitor centers/gift stores on the pretense of looking for the stamp. What an amazing selection of history books, cds, dvds. Most of them had a nice selection of children's books that related to the person or subject too.


Anonymous said...

Not all your children think it's weird - Entling No. 1 reminds you she bought her own park passport when she visited the St. Louis Arch last summer. (Though she retains the right to continue to tease you mercilessly for the Golden Spike.)

Anonymous said...

We love our National Parks "passports" and keep them in the glove compartment of the van. Smart of you to remember to bring them on a plane trip--I'll have to remember that when we go up to Boston in July! I hope my kids will continue to use them now that they are approaching adulthood. Too bad we can't catalog them and keep them in the library--the students love to see those along with all the wonderful Field Guides that my brilliant predecessor bought. :)

Camille said...

BOSTON! That is another place I need to visit.
Great minds leslie, great minds.

Camille said...

Entling No. 1 is such a bright child.

AMY T said...

Hey, Hey, Hey. What, exactly, are you sayin' about one of my state's few claims to fame? Besides being the reddest state on the map, we've got the golden spike! At least give us that. J/K

Camille said...

I LOVED seeing where they drove the golden spike! It really came home to me what an amazing feat they had accomplished. My favorite kind of vacation includes just such interesting detours.