Tuesday, March 06, 2018

In The Halls Of Power

So today I did something I haven't done in 26 years of parenting - I chaperoned a public school field trip. I did it out of a sense of civic duty, plus hey, I wanted to go where they were going, anyway, and this way I wouldn't have to drive. I did have to endure a ride on a school bus, though, and yeah, I'd forgotten how sick that makes me feel (it's been, oh, 37 years since I've last experienced that). Plus, I worried all last night that I wouldn't know how to chaperone correctly. It turned out to be pretty simple, though. The teacher gave me a list of 9 kids (including my own Rachel) and said, "Make sure they get on the bus to go there, and make sure they get on the bus to get back."

You know, I LIKE that teacher.

The Holy of Holies, down at the far end there
I ended up with over an hour to wander around on my own and finally managed to see the inside of the Supreme Court building (I've lived in this area for 3 decades now - it's shameful how little I've seen). I was even able to go inside the actual courtroom, as the Court isn't in session right now. Guys, the whole thing is like an American temple, with the steps leading up to the huge columns outside, and inside there is the long marble hall (more columns!) leading to what is, essentially, the curtained inner sanctum of the courtroom itself. I half-expected to see the Ark of the Covenant, sitting up there by the Justices' bench.

That didn't happen.

And we were given tickets to sit in the Senate gallery at the Capitol, where I totally geeked out  recognizing all sorts of Senators down below. (And why is seeing someone in person completely different than seeing them on TV? Tell me.) Schumer, Gillibrand, McConnell, Graham, Kaine...the guard twice had to tell me to sit down as I attempted to see who else was down there.

We had a tour of the Capitol building with a great tour guide, interesting and funny. AND we were all standing in the ....I don't know what you call it, that middle part under the great dome...when Benjamin Netanyahu himself walked through on his way to Paul Ryan's office. He was less than 10 feet from me and I briefly considered shouting, "Stop the settlements!" but decided that I didn't want to be tackled by all those security guards surrounding him.

Sort of wish I had, though.

So, yeah, I did something new and it was fun, and I managed not to be arrested for disturbing the peace, so my day was a win all the way around, I'd say. How was yours?


  1. SHUT THE FRONT DOOR! That is so totally cool. You should've barged into Ryan's office and given them an earful, but I respect that you had to be in charge of the kids. Our tour guides in DC were all so wonderful. That city takes customer service very seriously.
    Glad you had such a great time.

  2. Wow!!!!
    Good for you!
    My husband always did the field trips when our kids went to school.
    We took a homeschool field trip today...to Wendy's!!!! Lol!

  3. Oh I would have been tempted too. Goodness! Netanyahu. Wow. You are very lucky to live I'm the area. Our kids go to pioneer reenactment sites for field trips. The West. What can I say.

  4. Awesome! And you TOTALLY should've yelled that. I'd have helped to pay your bail.

  5. How awesome! We've never seen anyone important or famous on our trips to D.C. Maybe one day though! And I'm very glad you did NOT get arrested! Although that would have made for an exciting blog post!

  6. I was so excited when my son's 5th grade went to DC that I gladly volunteered to chaperone. Unfortunately, we weren't able to roam on our own except for one afternoon - and that's the afternoon it POURED. I've wanted to go back but haven't done so yet.

    I, too, am glad you didn't get arrested.

  7. Well that's cool! I got to go to the state capital but there weren't any politicians walking around (go figure).

  8. Wow! The closest I have been to a person in power is that I sat in the same chair that Michelle Obama sat in 3 months earlier than I was there, at Pamela's Diner, our finest local dining establishment.

    Glad you survived the chaperoning. It's no easy task.

  9. We did a capitol tour last spring, and when we were "standing in the middle part under the dome" Paul Ryan walked by. It was kinda cool.

  10. In your defense, you DID have kids that were in your care, so getting arrested would have been a poor choice.
    That was a pretty incredible field trip!