04/09/24 – After lunch, we walked the rest of the way to Jared Golden’s office, which wasn’t terribly far from Union Station, and didn’t take us too long to get there once we got going. I’d say the part that took the longest was getting through security and taking the elevators up to his office and back down afterwards.

I’ll be honest, going through security in most state and federal buildings makes me a little nervous. I’m probably putting too much thought into it, but when I go to empty my pockets and take off the things I’m wearing that they want me to take off before I can go through security, and then as I’m scrambling to put everything back on and put everything back in my pockets afterwards, I feel like I take too long doing it sometimes, especially if there’s a line of people behind me, and I’m drawing unwanted attention to myself in that situation, like “Will this guy hurry up?”

Then as we’re waiting for the elevators to take us up to Jared Golden’s office, I realized some of us get a little antsy when there’s a lot of people in a small confined space, like an elevator, trying to cram themselves in there with them, and the elevator can only hold so many people at any one time, so I felt like I had to hang back with them a little bit to try to make things easier on them, all the while hoping our group doesn’t stay separated for too long doing it.

We arrived to meet Jared Golden’s staffers to plead our case and discuss Social Security reform for our first real test. This was our first time doing this presentation in Washington for someone who could realistically be in a position to help us achieve our goals in that regard, and we had only gone over our lines a handful of times prior to that. But I’d say for the most part, each of us did our part really well. And we’ll keep getting better at it the more we do it. We should all feel very proud of ourselves in this situation. We had passed our first real test.

And so, with our first Congressional visit in the books, we had a short window of time before we needed to get back to the hotel. So we started walking down Capitol Hill, along the National Mall, stopping along the way to take some pictures and rest a little bit, maybe grab something to eat or drink from some of the local food trucks, before we decided to have a look around at the Museum of Natural History. We only had about an hour, maybe an hour and a half, so not nearly enough time to explore every nook and cranny in a building that size with that much in it, so we needed to make the most of the time that we had. Some of us looked at dinosaur fossils. Others took pictures of sea mammals. Most of us definitely wanted a look at the Hope Diamond. We had a quick look inside the gift shop and decided we didn’t need souvenirs from there that bad, at least not at the prices they were asking for them.

A Walk Around the Capital.
The Group waiting to Enter Jared Golden’s office.
Meeting in Jared Golden’s Office
Stephanie and Jon resting at the National Mall
The Museum of Natural History
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