Hello! This summer I had the absolute pleasure of attending Citizenship Washington Focus (CWF), where I stayed at the National 4‑H Conference Center. During my time here at CWF, I traveled with my delegation into the heart of Washington, D.C. to view the glorious monuments and memorials. Among these monuments and memorials were the Abraham Lincoln Memorial, the Vietnam Veterans memorial, the Marine Corps Memorial, and many more.
How did we get to downtown D.C.? There is quite a bit of walking during this week, but I can promise you we never had to walk to get from the 4‑H center to our destinations. For the most part during the week we rode on buses with the most polite bus drivers you could possibly imagine. However, sometimes on Fridays, delegation day, we didn’t use the bus as our form of transportation. Instead we ventured into the mysterious underground tunnels below the bustling city of Washington, D.C.; formally known as the Metro System.
If you are like me and you are coming from an area where public transportation is limited, then you are in for a treat. Washington, D.C. is full of something new and exciting around every corner, but below the ground is something like nothing else that could be found in the city above.
First, to descend into the underground of D.C., you’ve got to hop onto the escalator or trot down the stairs until you reach the bottom. Then, you will come upon these mysterious machines whose magical powers are to confuse and frustrate the riders of the Metro. These machines are where you can purchase a metro card and put an allotted amount of money on the card. The most important thing to remember when working with these machines on the metro is this; do NOT get frustrated by these contraptions. In fact, be pumped that you get this new experience to purchase a card that will give you complete access into the underground world of Washington, D.C.
Once you have purchased your metro card, take the time to read what train line you need to be on. There are six different colored train lines, all of them traveling to unique places throughout the city. If you have ever seen Harry Potter, then you must know that the metro is our version of Platform 9 ¾. The metro is today’s version of the Hogwarts express, because like the train that travels to Hogwarts, the metro also travels to some pretty magical places. So take it all in while you experience it and don’t just take it at face value. The metro is so much more than a grungy train underground. The metro is full of interesting people, exciting places, and a chance to make some memories while you’re here visiting Washington, D.C.
Written by: Karlie Wade, CWF PA 2016