Washington DC – Day 11 (June 3, 2005): National Geographic Museum

Fari and I planned to meet up again for Friday prayer at the Embassy. Unfortunately, both of us miscoordinated on the plan, so we arrived late, but we arrived nonetheless. I had an appointment with Mas Irawan, so we got to be there anyway. Mas Irawan was the person who interviewed me back in Fall 2003 on behalf of Voice of America. Indiana University held the 2003 conference for the Association of Muslim Social Scientist, and I happened to be one of the volunteers. So that’s how Mas Irawan and I met.

Afterward, Fari and I had lunch at the Union Station food court. DC Union Station is just like an airport. It’s enormous for a train station, and there’re a plethora of shops and eateries as well. High-rise ceiling and European-style architecture made it an attractive tourist destination of its own, aside from being a transportation center. Unfortunately, the basement (where the food court is located) was still under renovation, so it was a bit ugly when we were there.

Since Fari had another plan, we split up after lunch. I went to the National Geographic Museum. Initially, I just went to see what was inside and probably picked a job application as well. They didn’t have an extensive exhibition other than photographic displays of Darfur at the time. I roamed to a small room and found another exhibit of children’s paintings to promote peace. I read the tags and the children were students from George Washington School in Charleston, West Virginia, Salman’s high school. Small world, eh?

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