Peak Bloom in DC

Tomorrow morning I head for Boston, there to remain for the next week for Worlds.  But this weekend the cherry blossoms here in DC are officially at peak bloom, just in time for the opening of the festival.  There are a number of trees in my neighborhood:

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Yesterday I went into the city.  I’d intended to do my annual walk around the tidal basin, but then I decided to go in a different direction, literally, walking from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial and back.  Although there were plenty of trees in bloom around the monument, where postal service employees were even hawking cherry blossom stamps!

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All the flags in the city were at half-mast, I assume due last week’s attacks in Brussels:

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I came to the World War II memorial, where a duck was swimming in the great fountain:

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The Lincoln Memorial was so crowded I ended up turning past it, and came to the Vietnam Memorial.  I had been there before, but not since I was very young.  Back then it seemed like this mammoth thing that hovered over me and went on for miles.  Like other things I’ve come back to as an adult, it’s much smaller than I remember, but the impact of seeing those names remains:

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Behind the Washington Monument, where an artificial island honors the Declaration of Independence, the tree of choice is the willow, along with tulip trees that are now wilting:

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But in front of it the cherry blossoms fill the landscape, which now includes the Smithsonian’s new museum of African-American History and Culture Museum, scheduled to open in September:

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Getting back on the metro when my walk was done took a few minutes, with everyone else also trying to get it, but as we shuffled forward, we were serenaded by a saxophonist playing “Let It Be.”

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