It has been open for a few years, but we've never made the time to go - though to be fair, we usually let crowds die down a bit, and then, well........Covid 19 - then Delta, the Omnicron and now AB5.
This trip, we were able to snag timed tickets (they're free, just timed).
Honestly, we did not make a dent in this visit. Museum Fatigue is a legitimate medical condition. And at the 90 minute mark (and it wasn't even our first museum of the day!), we kind of hit a wall......and we weren't even 25% done with expanse of the newest (?) Smithsonian.
The plan was to start at the top floor (4) and work our way down. But 4 was so packed with so much, one floor took over 90 minutes. Even if we had the energy, there wasn't enough time to do the other three in the time the museum was open.
I won't lie - it was weird being there. Great, but weird.
We felt like interlopers. I think we were interlopers. We were. For sure.
I doesn't mean we didn't get something out of the experience. I didn't mean our liberalism made us feel comfortable being there - quite the contrary. There is a white guilt that is invoked here - and rightfully so. How would it not?
Granted, I don't think any MAGA folk are coming to visit this museum unless it were to painfully point out their prejudices and for hate mongering. You gotta figure there are the few who'd walk through the doors to posture their faux-superior status. At least we didn't have to encounter that.
We are all informed on a daily basis the injustices the Black community faces. It's painful when you can seemingly do so little to affect change. It's painful to see it in front of you in room after room after room.
Of course we did not see a lot, but one of the more interesting things, to me, of what we did see, was a film loop of Black Americans talking about their skin tone and the prejudices or bias they get from it - not just from the White community, but in and amongst their own race. 710 and I talked about it over dinner later that night and both brought up the same part of it, and one fraction of that part. It both hit us separately and together. Just unknowingly at the time.
I'm actually looking forward to our return to DC - whenever that may be - so we have the opportunity to visit another floor.
This one will take time.
Song by: Amy Winehouse