Friday, January 02, 2009

Obamas on the Move

In true child-centric style, the Obamas are moving to Washington this weekend in time for their daughters' start of classes at Sidwell Friends School on Monday.

They won't be staying in Blair House, the residence for White House guests, which is booked until January 15th, but at the Hay-Adams, my favorite Washington hotel a few hundred yards from the new home they will be occupying for the next four years.

In between is Lafayette Park, a small patch of green that was once part of the White House grounds until Pennsylvania Avenue separated them. Before going over to interview JFK, attend Lynda Bird Johnson's wedding and pass through the gates for press briefings, I would sit there and think about the families who lived across the way and those who would in future years.

Hay-Adams is a charming old hotel, in which the Obamas will certainly be comfortable but, if time, weather and the Secret Service permit, they may want to take a walk in Lafayette Park and think about its history which includes, among other things, serving as a zoo and a slave market.

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