Day one – Washington 

What an incredible day – after a buffet breakfast to prepare us for the long day ahead, we quickly made our way on the underground to the Capitol Building. 

To see the centre of American democracy up close was a powerful experience for all – with plenty of opportunities for selfies. 

We were given a tour of the inside, and after travelling half way round the world, we ended up with a tour guide from York. We were able to see the centre of the dome, including the very spot where presidents are laid in state.  

From here we made our way to the Library of Congress – the largest library in the world. 

From there we visited the Shakespeare Library, which houses the largest collection of Shakespeare texts in the world, including first and second edition folios of many of his works. Miss Devlin and Mr Copestake were suitably excited. So much that they took the opportunity to recite some Othello and get a picture with the Bard himself. 

Our next journey took us down the Mall where we were able to get excellent views of the Washington Monument as well as find time to have lunch and enjoy the sun. It’s been a baking hot day; rather unexpected but very much appreciated. 
After lunch we made our way to see the White House. Rather disappointly however, we were told that we wouldn’t be able to get to see the building as the roads around it were closed. However…

… it turns out that the White House gardens are open two days a year for visitors. And after finding a very helpful guide, we got passes to go directly in. 

This was a phenomenal opportunity, to see the White House up close, as well as stand next to the Rose Garden and see straight into the Oval Office. 

Our final stop of the day was the incredible Lincoln Memorial. Being able to see the whole two mile stretch of the Mall, as well as the very spot where Martin Luther King Jr delivered his famous speech, was an incredibly moving experience. 

The day has finished with dinner and time in the pool – in fact y13 seem to be having a ball, whilst the staff sit in silence at the time. It’s been exhausting, exhilerating and emotional. But it’s been a wonderful day.