Friday, July 23, 2010

I get by with a little help from my friend



"I think if you look closely at the imagery in this room, you'll see that you're definitely not the first person to do a shamanic dance in here." --Adrianne T.

Oh yeah.

Adrianne works for Congress. She is also a great friend and neighbor. She is a truth teller, she is a great shaman and healer who can sense energy while simultaneously working her great analytical mind. She has a hell of a job that she is somehow able to manage in the midst of all the energy of the Capitol. Needless to say, I am rather in awe of Adrianne and now forever indebted to her for taking me on an extensive "staff-guided" tour of the Capitol yesterday.

She asked me, while we waited in one security line after another, whether I was just now getting around to processing my experience of 9/11. My jaw dropped - man do I love truth-telling Capricorns. I knew I had been writing here about 9/11, but didn't put it together that I'm really mourning pre-9/11 DC these days.


The Apotheosis of Washington at the top of the dome. What a painting! Wow!!

Before 9/11, I spent a lot of time in the Capitol rotunda. The Capitol, just like all federal buildings, was accessible to the public. Before 9/11, at least once a week I used to enter the Hart senate office building, take the subway to the basement of the Capitol, then go sit on a bench at the periphery of the rotunda, or twirl in the center of that magnificent room.

I love the Capitol, I'm talking about the building itself, especially the dome. For those of us living on Capitol Hill, the dome is our landmark, it is interwoven into the landscape, it is our neighbor. Before 9/11 I became friends with the Capitol. I really miss the easy access, I miss spending time in that beautiful room.

Yesterday, because of Adrianne, I was allowed once again into the inner sanctum of the Capitol. It was like meeting an old friend after a long separation. I felt like crying, but instead, I danced, I twirled and spun, I turned my face upwards and downwards and tried to drink it all in. I took a lot of pictures, needless to say.

Life is different since 9/11, but even so, because of Adrianne, it's possible to go and visit my dear friend the Capitol. I am so grateful!! Wow.


Here's the center of the rotunda, an incredible place of power. Here is where the four quarters of the District come together. Lincoln lay in state here, Kennedy, too. Wow.

24 comments:

ellen abbott said...

Love the collage. I've never been to the capitol building. It certainly is beautiful.

Celestite said...

I'm glad you got to visit one of your favorite places. One of my favorite places, since I was a child, is the observation deck at an airport, now closed forever. Airports built or remodeled after 9/11 don't even have one.

Everton Terrace said...

First - love your assemblage of the images.
Second - Wow, I had no idea the inside was so breathtaking. It's just beautiful. I can only imagine what it must feel like in there - obviously it's something else if it makes you want to dance.
Third - am I to understand the average person can no longer go inside to visit? Who are all those people? Special guests of some sort?

lakeviewer said...

Wow! I've never been there, but I can sense the power from this picture of yours. Good point about 9/11.

Adrianne said...

Wow! What compliments you pour upon me! Thank you!

Thanks also for yesterday -- it was awesome, in every sense of the word (although I probably shold have let you lead the tour)! (: ) Now that we know the ropes, we can do it again. Perhaps more efficiently next time, or perhaps not!

Regarding shamanic dances, I would also point out that some of the tourists were spinning on the center point on the first-floor level just beneath the center of the rotunda (a couple of them were spinning in their wheelchairs, which was especially excellent). People intuitively know that the center of the Capitol is a special and powerful point, even though not all of them *know* that they know. And how wonderful that some of them, like you, felt at liberty to burst into spontaneous dance. It was indeed a wonderful visit to our old friend, the Capitol.

The pics you posted here are gorgeous, as always. I can't wait to see the rest. Also can't wait to see you soon. Maybe Sunday, maybe sooner.

Cyndy said...

Those photos are very cool. When I was a kid, the Capitol was the building that I always wanted to see whenever we came downtown. Because it is the best building in DC!

The Bug said...

I'm so glad you had a good experience! I love all the pictures.

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Nice post. Is the public not able to go into the Capitol anymore? Do they not have tours? I haven't been to DC since 9/11.

Butternut Squash said...

It is the perfect place for dancing! So cool that you have a friend to help you get to where you need to be. 'To turn turn will be our delight, til by turning turning we come round right!'-Shaker Song

Meri said...

I haven't been in D.C. since then. When I worked on the Mall, we could wander into the Capitol and just be, taking in the many conflicting energies of the place. I can't imagine what it must be like, now that a blanket of fear has settled down on it.

California Girl said...

your imagery, written, both photographic, is powerful too. I visited the Capitol once while in DC and I think of all the lovely places there one can no longer see or see w/o much ado thanks to 9-11. I wonder if we'll ever get our world back?

steven said...

reya it's the whole spinning circularity of the place - enfolding, wrapping, enclosing and then those little openings for light to enter and leave. the people - the women in your photos seem bemused, the men containing rapture, or perhaps waiting for a sign, an epiphany of sorts. but most astonishing of all is the floor - it draws you in even past the film of impossible shininess and then releases you back into the mirror reflection of the entirety. wow! steven

Kerry said...

Beautiful. I can picture you easily, spinning about and looking up at the same time, which is actually kind of hard to do. Love the circular, spinning quality of these photos, and that glossy floor.

Reya Mellicker said...

As always, Steven, you know everything.

Adrianne I love you!!! Thank you again and again.

Regular citizens are still allowed to center the Capitol if they are part of an official tour. I've been on one of those once since 9/11. They keep you all together and do not allow you to stray even a foot a way from the group. They threaten to have you arrested if you dare to move away from your tour group.

With Adrianne it was much more relaxed, though there were areas they wouldn't allow us to explore even though Adrianne is a Congressional staff member.

Or should I call you a "punk staffer" A??

Reya Mellicker said...

Away from the group, not a way.

Reya Mellicker said...

Allowed to ENTER the Capitol, not CENTER the capitol.

Clearly I should stop now and make dinner. A big day at work. Is that a good excuse for serious typos??

Adrianne said...

Reya, my Reya, I love you, too, and you can call me "punk staffer" (actually it's "little punk staffer") any time! (: )

In response to Meri: one of the really remarkable things about the energy of the Capitol building is that the "blanket of fear" has not permeated it, in spite of the Capitol's location at the center of the vortex of Washington, D.C. The building itself is somehow shielded from all the nonsense that takes place around and inside it. It feels strong, wise, and calm, no matter what is happening within or without. The contrast of the Capitol energy and the frenetic energy of the congressional office bldgs to which it is connected by subterranean tunnels is truly breathtaking. One of the best things about working for Congress is that I can go in any time I damn well please. The best time is 5:30 on a Friday, when there are neither tourists nor politicians to interfere with the magic of the place.

Pam said...

Your photographic collage is amazing Reya. It captures the feel and spirit of the place beautifully. I am relieved to hear there are guided tours. Something so beautiful needs to be shared. Thank you so much for doing so here.

Reya Mellicker said...

See why I call you a powerful shaman and a truth teller, Adrianne? Wow.

Jo Floyd Lucas said...

Which is better, the post or the comments? Sometimes it's hard to tell with your incredible readers!

Thank you so much for sharing the magical experience with us. I,too, can see you dancing in the center under the dome of the Capitol. Lovely.

So thankful that this beautiful and precious building was spared on 9/11, and for the brave souls on the airliner who had a hand in saving it.

Elizabeth said...

You have captured absolutely beautiful images of the Capitol. The light is so unusual. ...oddly It somewhat reminds me of the human brain....with a pointed focus of energy up to receive guidance.

Reya Mellicker said...

Elizabeth, YES. Capitol means head, you know. And the dome itself is rather head-like (in a sort of creepy way). Thelight in there reminds me very much of the Pantheon, one of the original inspirations for the design.

Reya Mellicker said...

Jo YES our conversations here and on my blogfriends' blogs is always rich and fabulous.

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

I like what Elizabeth said about the center looking somewhat like a brain... I'd never thought of it that way, but it really does.