Friday, October 23, 2009
One of my favorite places in Washington DC is this little rest stop on the grounds of the US Capitol. When I lived in Capitol Hill in the late 80's and early 90's, I spent a good bit of time in this little house. The thick masonry walls and surrounding mature tree canopy resulted in a microclimate that was 10-20 degrees cooler than the harsh Washington summer temperature outside. (Washington is very much a southern city. The traditional August congressional recess came about as a response to the repressive late summer weather.)
This little enclosure, by design, muffles the sounds of the city and exists as a great place to get away from it all in the middle of it all. The cool stone built-in seating is perfect for relaxing, resting tired feet, or spending a little time in deep meditation. And the architectural detailing is nothing short of delicious. Notice the custom-formed brickwork. It's unfortunate that craftsmanship of this quality is so rare today.