Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Daytrip? Not quite.

Traveling from Alexandria to the National Mall along with 2 million other visitors was an experience. It started early. I arrived at the Metro station at 6:30 in the morning while the sky was still dark. It became quickly clear that it was going to be impossible fit in one of the blue trains headed to the mall. The trains would arrive and the doors would open, but there would be no room for anyone standing on the cold platform to fit in. I instead took the next train headed away from DC and rode it all the way to the end. We then waited to travel the half the length of the line into DC.

There was so little room on the train; our car had visitors from New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Kentucky, Arizona and of course, Virginia. The train would stop and start as we traveled along the route and we were informed of the Metro closings.

When we arrived at Federal Center SW (my metro stop, Capitol South, was closed) we exited and inched along the platform in a line that was double the platform's length.

The whole trip took two hours.

Leaving the city after the inauguration was also an adventure. Instead of crowding the platform metro police controlled the number of people allowed into the station. The line was four blocks long and it took an hour and a half to leave.

-- Kate Benner '10