Hello everyone! Today’s post is going to be a little different than my norm, but I felt that this experience was too great not to share!
This past week I was fortunate enough to go on a school Trip to Washington D.C.! I stayed in the city from MLK Day to the following Sunday, and I can easily say it was a trip of a life time. I mean, you haven’t really experienced the wonderland of politics until you go there during Inauguration week… that’s for sure. Yet even with all the hustle and crowds preparing for January 20th, I was still able to start off my trip the right way: by visiting various memorials. I went to the Washington Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, World War II Memorial and Korean War Memorial all in one day. Oh yeah, and I also went to the African American Smithsonian (which was absolutely amazing and a must see) on that same day! Lets just say I did a lot of walking…
Capitol Hill Day
The next day was probably my favorite part of the whole trip. I got to not only meet, but have a genuine conversation with my Arizona Senators. It’s all really a funny story actually, because it wasn’t supposed to happen that way. My school was supposed to basically just stop by Senator Flakes office and snap a picture with him real fast before he was to go into Scott Pruitt’s hearing. However, when we walked into the Senator’s office building we were not expecting the packed hallway of protestors. There were at least 100 people standing in the hallway wearing shirts, stickers, and even masks that were anti- Pruitt. Although those people were peaceful, there were two people that ended up getting themselves arrested. Literally seconds after we stepped foot in that hallway, we watched police drag away two screaming protestors. They were kicking and hitting the officers, as if they had no care whatsoever how badly that could effect them. That was just an adrenaline rush in itself.. just imagine what it felt like to talk with one of the few people that represents you and millions of other Americans. Jeff Flake surprised us, he ended up visiting us before walking into the hearing, took a picture with us, and actually stopped and had a conversation with all of us in the middle of a hallway, surrounded by protestors. Senator Flake answered every single question we had with kindness and dignity, and genuinely made us feel like we were just having a normal conversation with a friend. Although he couldn’t stay for too long, he still gave us his full attention and even stopped to take a picture with just me. That whole hour was an amazing experience in itself… wait until you hear the rest of it.
Just a few hours later, myself, and the 19 other students from my school, found our way to John McCain’s office. As exciting as that was, we were all a little bit bummed that we wouldn’t actually have a chance to meet Senator McCain, instead we met with his representative. As nice as this man was, and as willing as he was to answer every single question we had, we really didn’t get a chance to have the whole experience. We would have loved to actually sit down and talk to McCain, but we already accepted that it wouldn’t happen. So we ended up having a nice conversation with his representative for about a half hour, and then made our way out of the building.
On our way out guess who we saw?! You guessed it… John McCain. He was talking with a few reporters when we stopped and stared at him. (I’m sure he gets that from people all the time… but if I was him, I would have been a little annoyed having 20 teenagers stare at me while I am trying to do an interview.) Yet he surprised us all when he stopped talking with the reporters and came up to us. He introduced himself and ended up taking us to a staircase where we could all take a picture with him. We were all in such awe, that I don’t even think half of us even remember taking the picture. I mean I know I didn’t… all I could think was “I am standing next to John McCain!!” After we snapped the picture, we all collected ourselves and prepared to leave the building. Yet the Senator stopped us, and told us to follow him. He ended up taking us to the Kennedy Caucus Room where the Watergate Hearing was held, and even the hearing for the Titanic. We didn’t get to stay for too long, but we still had enough time to listen to him tell us a little bit about the room’s history. You can only imagine how excited we all were. John McCain was such a nice and gentle man, and meeting him will be something that I know I will never forget.
Attending the Inauguration was an experience I will absolutely never forget! I was lucky enough to receive a ticket from my Senator which allowed me to be a lot closer to the Capitol. That morning, we got to the Inauguration at about 7:30, and stood and waited for it to start for a few hours. Once 11 o’clock came around everyone went crazy! All of the Senators and Representatives came on stage, many former Presidents including Bush and Clinton ( even Hilary was there), and President Obama made his appearance as well. It was interesting to see the reactions of everyone. Some people were so extremely happy with this transition of power, and others weren’t. Yet if I learned anything at all, it would be that unity is so important. Yes, there are Republicans and Democrats, but in the end we are all one. This trip, and this Inauguration was just a huge reminder of the importance in remembering that.
Women’s March on Washington
The next day I was able to go see the Women’s March on Washington, and I have to admit that it was way more packed than the Inauguration was. There were women (and men) from all over the country who came to take part in this. I will also admit that when I decided to go I wasn’t sure what to expect; I wasn’t sure if I really wanted to spend my time watching people protest against the President. Yet I still decided to go and I am very glad that I did. It wasn’t at all what I expected. To be perfectly honest, it didn’t really feel much like a protest at all. Every single person I met was so sweet, and everyone there seemed so happy to be there. Yes, there were definitely people there that were against Trump, but there were also people who weren’t. A lot of the women I met were there to express their belief in women’s rights and just wanted to be a part of that. Even at the beginning of the march, during one of the speeches, they said that this march is for everyone, “even those who did vote for President Trump.” Those words really shocked me because all along I thought the whole march was about people hating on Trump, but in reality I really did feel like for the most part it was about love and unity, and the expression of the power of women.
I know that this post is a little different, but I thought that would be a story that you all might enjoy. I also will put where I got each outfit down below!!
Day One Outfit
Gloves These were perfect because they kept my hands warm, but I could also flip the top down so I could use my fingers when taking pictures!
The scarf was hand made for me by a family member but you can get a similar one here
Capitol Hill Day Outfit
Sweater Dress I got the actual dress so long ago I honestly don’t remember where it is from, but here is another cute dress!
Kate Spade Mine I got from an Outlet store, so this one isn’t exact but similar.
Michael Kors Not exact but similar