The Metro station was right outside the airport, which was nice.
We didn’t have to wait long for a train to arrive, and once it did, we changed trains once we got into the city, and after a couple more stops, we were a short walk from our hotel.
The whole thing may have taken 20 minutes.
Before every detail of a trip could be recorded on smartphone and likely posted to social media — I’m never more popular on Facebook than when I travel — details of travel were recorded in souvenirs, in photos taken on film and in memories.
Sometimes those memories can be imperfect — I know I went to Washington, D.C., on my senior trip in 1990, but I’m not 100 percent certain if I went with my parents and my brother before or after — and sometimes they store weird bits and pieces beyond, and sometimes instead of, the things that you did.
It’s why I remember the Moodys before most of what my family did in Colorado, and it’s why I remember the mildly sketchy hotel we stayed in during that trip we took to D.C.
Suzi’s and my accommodations on this trip are somewhat nicer; after all, we have an actual headboard, not plastic painted to look like wood. And although we have an up-close view of the HVAC, it’s not through bars.
But that hotel had a small diner with an amazing cook, and after we ate breakfast, we’d walk a short distance to the Metro station. As someone for whom “the city” growing up meant Albany or Schenectady, the Metro was something the likes of which I had never seen.
I was a teenager, so I knew what subways were, but I had never ridden on them, and it was something of a thrill to go underground in one part of the city and emerge in a completely different area.
I’ve used a lot of subway/mass transit systems since then — New York, Boston, London, Switzerland, to name some.
And while I’m sure many things on the Metro have changed in the 30 years since I first rode it — after all, neither smartphones or apps existed, but that’s why my rail pass is on — the stations look the same as they did in my mind all those years ago.