I take a rest day in the capital in order to stretch my legs and take some culture in. And also, as it’s the obvious LOGICAL next step to anyone who’s cycled across the country: to take over the White House.
The culture is great. I visit the Renwick Gallery, the Hirshhorn and the National Portrait Gallery. The Renwick is my favourite, with not only some exceptional pieces of art that totally speak to me, but also videos of artists ACTUALLY speaking to the audience and explaining their art. In a totally FUNNY way. My second fave is the Portrait Gallery with the “Experience America” exhibition. All of a sudden it all seems so… RELEVANT. I see pieces by artists I’m familiar with, but this time, I can actually FEEL their paintings. YES, this is EXACTLY what America is all about. I have seen it! Don’t you just love this feeling when you GET something? I sure do! And then the Hirshhorn surprises me with a little gem: a Ron Mueck’s sculpture. I get in and get face to face with the BIG GUY (the piece is actually entitled “Big Man”). ON MY GOSH, how great is that?! I have been trying to hunt down a Mueck’s exhibition for several years now, so you can only imagine how ecstatic I am when I see THE GUY.
Apart from that, I am sorry to report that Washington DC is not a very bike-friendly city. My host, Tom, begs to differ and tries to defend the capital’s claim to being the 3rd best American city to ride a bike in.
Where are the bike paths then, I ask? I have only seen two along like two streets.
If the roads are bike-friendly, why are the cyclists riding on the sidewalks, I ask? If riders feel the need to scooch onto the pavement, it indicates they don’t feel safe nor welcome on the roads.
And last but not least, if a girl’s boobs start hurting after a day of cycling in and about the town, you can be sure the road surface is real bad.
So, that’d be it for my cycling review of Washington DC. The capital of the greatest power in the world… as they say. Well, actually, not with THESE roads, I don’t think so.