Which Way to the Oval Office? Our 10-Year-Old Reporter Visits D.C.
By Sienna Beck / New York City
The red man lives in the Red House, and the orange man lives in the Orange House. The yellow man lives in the Yellow House, and the green man lives in the Green House. The blue man lives in the Blue House, and the purple man lives in the Purple House. The pink man lives in the Pink House, the black man lives in the Black House, the silver man in the Silver house, and the Gold man in the Gold house. But who lives in the White House? The President!
HAHA! Come on, people. Some applause or chuckles would be nice…
Just a little joke for Election Week! While we weren’t voting for president, it was still a BIG election for senators, governors, congressmen, representatives, and more. My family and I spent the weekend leading up to the Election in the most appropriate city: Washington D.C.! Let me start from the beginning:
On Friday night, my family and I rode on an Amtrak to Washington, where we were staying with our cousins. Our first stop on Saturday was a White House tour! We took the Metro (Washington’s version of the subway) to the White House. We went through security and got sniffed by a guard dog. (He was sooooo cute! Also, he was part of the Secret Service!)
Then we were allowed inside. I got to see the original presidential painting of George Washington. I also got to see the Red, Green and Blue rooms, and they lived up to their names (except for two red chairs in the green room). We saw a couple of other rooms, including the State Dining Room, where there was a huge table and a painting of Abraham Lincoln, the East Room, the Ballroom (which was gorgeous!), and then it was over. The West Wing was blocked off so I couldn’t see the Oval Office. I really wanted to see the Oval Office!
On Sunday, we went to the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. It was really cool! I got to see the original Neil Armstrong spacesuit. I also saw the evolution of spacesuits. I got to go inside a 747 plane cockpit (which also, it turns out, is the exact time I was born: 7:47 a.m on October 10, 2012). Plus, you could see a video and audio of Neil Armstrong’s rocket ship landing on the moon, and the famous picture of Earth (the view from the rocket ship circling the moon).
After the Smithsonian, we got ice cream from a truck. Note to self: never get ice cream from a truck again! When we got home, we all felt a bit nauseous and tired. Our Sunday sleep started very shortly after.
On our last morning in Washington, we started at the National Archives. We saw the original copies of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. We had seen replicas in Philadelphia a month earlier, and now we were seeing the originals! The National Archives had more than just that, though. There were more rooms! In one, I got to make a movie about D-Day, and it was shown on a big screen with MY NAME!
After the Archives, we ate lunch and visited the U.S. Botanic Garden. We walked through a tropical room and a desert room, and watered some plants in the children’s garden.
Our final official stop on our trip was a tour of the Capitol. We saw a hundred cool statues or more. Our tour guide was a nice man wearing a red uniform and a blue tie with white stars. I told him that I wanted to be President, and he was super supportive of me. We also saw the room where Rosa Parks and other people have been mourned, called the Rotunda. We also saw a combined room where, before separate rooms were added, both the House of Representatives and the Senate worked together. It got a bit noisy and was hard to get anything done, so we learned how they each got their own rooms. I’m pretty sure it was the Senate first and then the House.
After the tour, Mama gave me a lesson on how laws get passed, and I played a game in the Exhibition Hall to try to get a law passed. It was cool! I learned how long and grueling it is to pass a law. It really helped me understand the importance of our elections a bit better, though, because I want more people who share my beliefs in office to pass more laws I like!
On our way back to our cousins’ house, we passed the Supreme Court, where I ran up and down the big steps.
I can’t wait until I’m 18 so I can make my vote count! (And 35 to be President!)
Sienna Beck is a future author. She would like to become president when she is older. She lives in New York City (the best city in the world!) and spends her days ping-ponging between her two sisters, Willa and Olive.