February 21

Post-Apocalypse Tour Guide, #1

 

Now that we’re past the entrance…

Step this way.  Please follow in an orderly fashion.

This structure was first opened to the public on February 21, 1885.  At the time, and for many years after, it was the tallest stone structure in the world.

Of course, the elevators are no longer an option.  We’re going all the way to the top on foot.

More than nine hundred steps.  Do you think we can make it?

Single file, please.  The footing gets a bit tricky in this stretch.

From the top, tourists could peer through barred, bullet-proof observation windows for the best, panoramic view of Washington, DC.  The east windows overlooked the National Mall, stretching all the way to the Capitol Building.

Hmm?  Oh, that’s where members of Congress used to meet, back when our government had a legislative branch.

The elevators would have gotten us there in about five minutes, but it will take us a bit longer today.  Do any of you need to rest a moment before we continue?

Good.  Almost there.  I’ll click my stopwatch, then count to make sure everybody’s safe and sound.

All right.  Nicely done, people.  Looks like 15 minutes and 42 seconds.

Here’s the barred window holes of the observation deck, which you can try to look through.  The glass shattered when all 80,000 tons of the monument toppled, unfortunately.

Walking to the top is easier now, if that’s any consolation.  We can do it from outside, lengthwise along cracked ground, instead of climbing 900 steep steps to the summit from within.