Skip to comments.Trip to the inaugural ball.
Posted on 01/20/2013 3:57:15 AM PST by grame
My son, an Iraq Medal of Valor, was one of 3 MOV recipients from the Indiana Nat'l Guard to receive an invitation to the Commander-in-Chief inaugural Ball. Without interjecting any politics, he was ecstatic.
They sent him orders to report to purchase dress blues. We laid out the 547 bucks to buy the blues, he didn't tell me that didn't include the hat because he was trying to keep the total down. The Sgt that drove him had bought the hat for him without his knowing until later.
Thurs morn they called him & said no airline or room reservations had been made for the Indiana attendees. They were free to make their own arrangements & attend. Needless to say, he was bummed to the max. Shaking the President's hand, he was looking fwd to the adventure of it all. None of us had seen him this excited since his return from Iraq.
Not one to be denied, he has borrowed his brother's car & is heading out this morning. This is my son who came back with a diagnosed case of PTSD.
My vanity post is motivated by two things. One, his safety. He has no room to stay in & he's driving his brothers car. DC isn't exactly a crime free place. Any prayers on his behalf would be appreciated.
Second, advice. Where should he park? Cabs, are they safe? Where should he avoid?
Thank you for reserving your political comments, we are having enough of those discussions here at home with the teenaged g'children.
Thank you for any advice you can offer.
Stay home and watch the NFL.
Park out in the suburbs at one of the commuter/metro lots and take the subway into town. It is generally safe when crowded. Avoid it during very late hours when there are few passengers. Driving will be a nightmare during the inaugural activities. If he takes cabs, they are hit and miss. Red Top in Arlington is a bit better. DC cabs vary greatly and can be a third world experience. In general, it is a big urban environment with all the attendant risks. He should be vigilant and not swept away by the festivities.
If he goes to Gaithersburg, MD and parks there and takes the Red Line Metro, that’s a longer trip but a safe area to leave the car. Metro is pretty clean and safe. I know they are closing some of the stops close to the Inaugural site but I believe the DC Metro has a web app - the Metrobus is also an option. Regarding hotels, he should try to stay in Northwest DC - do not stay anywhere in Southeast.
I moved out of the area a while ago, so a current native may have better advice. No matter what, I’ll send up some prayers for him. Please thank him for his service from some alpaca farmers in Maryland.
BTW, discussing the DC subway, particularly if using the acronym WMATA (Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority), puts us on Big Sis's terrorist watch list, so watch out for the black helicopters.
Grame, I always use the West Falls Church metro station in Fairfax County, Virginia. The neighborhood is quite safe. The poster who recommended Gaithersburg is correct also.
One thing I would keep in mind is that the metro stations are less safe the closer the train gets to DC, especially on the Maryland side. That’s why I always stick to the Virginia stations.
Thank you for his service. I hope and pray his journey is safe.
P.S. He will NOT be able to find parking in DC.
If he wants to save money on a hotel, he could stay in Sterling, Virginia (spitting distance from Dulles Airport). My mom lives there and there are tons of brand new hotels in the area. The prices are cheaper than they are in DC and the close-in suburbs. The drive to West Falls Church metro would be about 30 minutes.
Praying for your son!
Parking is a nightmare in DC. I have had some decent experience with a cab though.
sorry to say, but my suggestion would prolly match many here by saying he should stay home and avoid the emperor’s company
but since he’s already on the way...
if he must go, northern VA is better then MD (having lived & worked in both for years... tho i moved out a while ago, i still visit when required). clydes in vienna (near tyson’s corner mall) is one of my favorite places for a good meal, tho not cheap.
there is a clyde’s in georgetown, but it’s not quite the same. (travel time between the two is about 10-15 minutes).
for a place to stay, consider crossing to rosslyn.. there is a marriot and a holiday inn just over key bridge, and the crime is usually negligible since it’s usually abandoned after business hours and weekends. it’s also a quick hop to georgetown (no idea about availability, but i’ve heard VERY few are showing up for the event... he could get lucky)
while there, if he’s never done it, he would prolly enjoy walking the mall (monument mall... it gives a nice sense of patriotic air, even during these dark times). should be in the 50s today (sunday), so it’ll be nice enough to walk around. but, it looks like it might snow tomorrow with temps dropping.
if he’s SOL on accommodations, i’m sure someone here might be able to pull a string or two
good luck and G-d bless
Out-of-state plates on a decent vehicle, in the DC area, just about gaurantees that your vehicle will be gone if parked for an extended period after the sun goes down!
“They sent him orders to report to purchase dress blues”
Who sent him orders? Is he still in the National Guard? The last time someone told me as a reservist to attend a command performance & that I was required to buy dress blues, I politely told said commander to get lost, I was busy that night.
Besides, dress blues are now standard dress uniform & are issued to enlisted soldiers free of charge.
FWIW, I did later spring for a new set of blues for a function I truly wanted to attend because I sincerely admired the commander who was being honored. That certainly doesn’t apply in this case. Maybe watching the NFL instead is a better idea. And this is just my humble opinion: I wouldn’t attend this inauguration if they brought me out of retirement & paid me to attend!
Anyway, I thank your son for his sacrifices & his service. With tears in my eyes I do thank him.
That could be unfortunate. I would hate for a vet's trip to DC to bomb. Big Sis can go nuclear when something doesn't go her way - although the usual liberal response it to hire an army of perverts to molest underage travelers. BTW, I agree with the advice to use Metro as much as possible (but be off it by 9:00 pm) and park in the suburbs, well away from the Inaugural ground zero.
He is due for another promo & one of the check list items is dress blues, so I figured it serves two purposes.
Yes, he is still in the Guard. They called him one day & the next sent him orders to report. And would be taken to nearest post to purchase dress blues.
Park at one of the periphery Metro subway stations, and use the rail. Steer clear of anywhere southeast of the Capitol dome or northeast of the Mansion. Stick to the Mall, basically, or the Federal Triangle.
Sounds more like a mission he was ordered to complete rather than an invitation. “You WILL come worship me and you WILL pay all the money required and do all the work required to make my coronation glorious.”
I’m happy that he is excited about this; I only wish the hand that he hopes to shake was fit to shine his shoes. And I will be praying for his safety.
Thank your son for his service and thank you for raising a great son!
Is that Pacific or Eastern time?
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.