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Sarah and Emily’s Travel Diary

Thursday, 30 Aug 2007

Location: Washington D.C., USA

MapSo luckily for us Southwest did not lose our luggage, which apparently is quite rare and we managed to navigate our way on buses and metro to find our hostel. Oh yes we were back in a hostel again and believe us when we entered our room we soon wished we were back in the luxury of Mark's house. We were sharing a room with a Brazilian man named Philippe who we decided wouldn't offend us too much. We felt the need to get out of the hostel straight away so walked the streets trying to find decent shops - they weren't to be had in this area of D.C. we seemed to be in the hippy/gay area and there wasn't a McDonalds in sight. We eventually came to the end of our map so turned back and got some 'Western Fries' for our trouble, they turned out to be wedges so we were happy enough. We got an early night as we were still recovering from a week of drinking solidly in Bradenton and bless him Philippe was very quiet when going to bed.

We weren't blessing him the next morning when we were woken from our extremely broken sleep by his alarm, he clearly wasn't woken by it as it continually went off and was shortly joined by his phone ringing...oh joy of joys! We eventually rolled off our double bed bunk bed (yea really not the comfiest thing to sleep on and maybe the squeakiest bed known to man) and headed off for a day of sightseeing, we had monuments to see, places to be.

We whizzed round the sights, discovered we weren't allowed in the White House even when begging with the guards on the gate and daring them to run after us if we clambered in (always a risky business when you're not sure if an American will understand our humour). We'd missed all the tickets to go up the Washington Monument so sat outside it in the shade reading a leaflet about it, I think we gained all we could from that! Then off to look at the lake that is so often featured in films in Washington we've found though obviously we just remembered it as the lake in Forest Gump that hippy Jenny waded through...ah that film as often been with us through these travels! We walked up and down the Mall which had an array of free museums (we did wander into one but it was no Te Papa so we soon wandered out again) and onto the Capitol where we did our usual take a few pictures and swiftly move on. Then the evening consisted of a trip to Safeway, which is always a highlight and we met many 'special' people on that journey. But hey we had to get snacks for our train journey to Greensboro the next day - that's right we weren't about to get the Greyhound again!

We were ready for another early night but it was put slightly on hold by a Hungarian girl who insisted on talking to us to improve her English, which would normally be fine but hey we're sure watching the T.V. would have the same impact! Oh well we got our laughs watching her trying to get in and out of the top bunk without a ladder...simple things simple minds!

So a lovely train journey was our plan for the next day, we were stocked up on snacks and books so all would be well. We did eventually manage to get seats together on the train (luckily they reserve some 'for couples only') and settled in for the 7 hour journey. Obviously we were sat by some magical people, there was the 19year old boy with a 4year old kid and a woman of similar age trying to become our best friend by commenting on the 'hotness' of guys that walked past and a small child that kept talking to sarah whenever he got a bit scared/bored. But it was O.K. as his mum asked us if we were 'professional travellers' when we hadn't even been talking about travelling, we said that we'd been doing it a year and she wondered which channel we were working for...if only people if only!

After a 2 hour delay we eventually pulled into Greensboro to find our poor friend Simon had been waiting for us, we were extremely pleased to see him, a great reminder of a our good old York days. He even cooked Shepherds Pie for us with Bisto gravy and everything....ah a little bit of home! He left us to cruise his internet the next day and do yet more washing (it does seem that's all we do in other people's homes) before taking us around the Dollar shops - you gotta love them! Then home for another lovely meal, this time cooked by Corey and then we headed off to Laser Tag but doh it was shut, so we headed off to Celebration Station - Fun for all the family but doh that was shut to so it was home for a film and more Margaritas (they are appearing more and more in our lives!!). But we couldn't get too drunk as we were making a large sacrifice the next day and getting out of bed to head into school with Simon...

Yes we got up at 6:15 to head to school, which starts at the ridiculous time of 7:30 here (yes that's right we would never teach here purely for that fact) but then you have a lot less children in the class to hassle you but hey their kids so yes they do still hassle you! We were again reminded of the horrors that sent us packing in the first place, we're sorry but we love not working and think that's the way life should be. It was also a stark reminder of what we had to do when we got home...get jobs...eugh! Simon's class were lovely but full of characters. When one boy's t-shirt says "warning, mind closed until further notice" you know you're in for trouble. But we made the most of it after all we were only there for a day and when it came to acting out a play for the kids we were in our element - if only Hollywood was watching. We can understand why all the teachers in Simon's school were heading out for drinks that evening...and hey it is a pastime we sometimes partake in so we are happy to join them!