Capitol Hill. The place where the business of Washington takes place. It is here that monumental decisions are made that will go down in the history books of our great country. Today, I was lucky enough to meet the staff of the U.S. Senators from Florida, explore the Supreme Court and the Capitol building, and even ride the underground tram that only employees can use!
I started the day speed walking to the Hart building with more excitement than I have ever experienced. The secretaries who greeted me when my fellow Floridian ALA Girls Nation senator, Isabella Braga, and I walked in were two of the most polite people I have ever encountered. Speaking with Senator Nelson’s legislative aid, Ashley Tighe, taught me that although it may seem like the senators are superheroes who have enough time to debate and research, they are actually just the head of a large team of incredibly intelligent people who work together for the betterment of our country. I was blown away by the amount of behind-the-scenes work that takes place every day, but isn’t talked about in the media. It was also shocking to me when I learned that the staff members from Marco Rubio’s office and Bill Nelson’s office didn’t see themselves becoming a senator themselves. Both Ms. Tighe and Mr. Sutton were happy doing the behind-the-scenes work because there was less pressure and they played a huge role in creating policy and preparing the senators.
Although I was amazed at the people I met, I was speechless at the architecture I saw in the Supreme Court, the Library of Congress, and the Capitol Building. I can’t even comprehend how the buildings stay standing with the enormous amount of marble that was used to build them! The rainbow of colors I saw on the floors, ceiling, and walls were vibrant and the extreme detail used in the carvings were inspiring. The Library of Congress was definitely the most extravagant and it also had my favorite gift shop as I am an avid reader! I wish I could spend a whole week exploring the National Mall and I cannot wait to come back.
In case you don’t know, we have been getting around five to six hours of sleep each night and we are all absolutely exhausted! However, I find myself wide-awake tonight as I write this as I am just busting with excitement for our visit to the White House tomorrow! It was confirmed that Mr. President is going to see us so I am praying that nothing goes wrong that would prevent him from getting to meet all of us. It would be a dream come true to meet him, shake his hand, and hopefully hug him!
~Haley Tabor, Florida