June 9-12, 2002
Brenda passes in front of the Whitehouse on our walk around the D.C. mall area. There was a large crowd around, even with all the security and the barricades.
We could see the elaborate TV setup in the Rose Garden for press interviews of the President. White-shirted security forces with a military look were everywhere.
One of the reasons the security was so tight is that Prime Minister Sharon of Israel was in town for a state visit. They had set up a tent in front of the Israeli Embassy and had a covered canopy over the stair to the entrance so that Sharon could enter and leave without being seen. We walked on around the Whitehouse toward the mall and could see the Washington Monument.
We found that we could get a clear view of the back of the Whitehouse from the mall. Despite the security and the barricades, there were a lot of people around. And several groups of them were playing baseball or softball. At about 5 pm we saw groups of people with ball equipment heading for the mall, as if they were going to play baseball until the traffic died down.
At above left is one of the types of barriers which has been placed around the Washington Monument to discourage terrorist attack. It was completely surrounded by concrete or other types of barriers. When we looked either toward the Capital (above right) or toward the Lincoln Memorial, we saw lots of construction and lots of barriers.
While we were in the area of the Washington Monument, we heard sirens and saw several motorcyles with blue lights flashing coming out of the area of the Whitehouse. The motorcycles were followed by a couple of police cars, then two black limousines, a black suv, and then more police cars and motorcycles. The motorcade headed in the direction of the airport, so we guessed that the President was headed for the airport. Earlier we and all other pedestrians had been blocked from walking behind the Whitehouse, so we presumed that this impending motorcade departure was the reason. It was unique to us, but perhaps an everyday occurrence for the citizens of the capital.
Brenda poses with one of the decorated donkies which were scattered around DC, with a slightly larger number of decorated elephants, in keeping with a Republican administration. The Washington Monument was visible behind her, but got washed out in the image at left.