There is one small problem with business travel. It tends to involve a lot of – well – business. And that is how I found myself finally free for dinner at the very European time of 10:00 PM tonight. In one way, it was rather appropriate, given that I ended up at a pleasant little Belgium restaurant. On the other hand, the fact that things were closing down, rather than just getting going, rather spoiled the effect. But the mussels were incredibly tasty, the beer was very interesting, and I almost had the place to myself. Sometimes it’s very difficult to get much sympathy.
When I finished dinner, it was a very pleasant evening, in spite of warnings of a severe storm within a matter of hours. So I took the time to wander through the heart of Washington on the way back to my hotel. My route took me past the National Portrait Gallery. Like so many things in Washington, it is very impressive – even monumental.
Of course, if you turn around, it can spoil the whole effect.
But that is America. A country of contrasts. Just down the street there was a modern sculpture that I quite liked. At least I think that’s what it was. No signs, so who knows.
And then, just across the street was the International Spy Museum, looking like something out of a very low budget cold war movie.
All of this was within a block and a half of my hotel. It was all very surreal. Until I realized that as a “legal alien”, someone was probably using the mobile phone in my pocket to track my movements. Suddenly, it was all too real.
But for the record, I still love it. (Please note this, if you are monitoring my Internet traffic…)