Today was a somewhat surreal experience. This morning we left Charles Town, West Virginia at 8am and headed to D.C. After an hour ride on the bus we completed the feat of riding the metro into central D.C. There we split into smaller groups to conquer D.C. in the lengthy 4 hours we had there. Favorite sites for the GC Explorers included the new Renwick Gallery, National Museum of the American Indian, the Air and Space Museum, and the White House. I traveled around with Katie, Christina, and Clara, some of whom were particularly fascinated by the taxidermied elephant at the entrance of the Natural History Museum. For lunch we consumed a variety of food from food trucks lining the street. We went into a Starbucks to eat. Moments after we sat down the fire alarm for the entire building went off, requiring 2000+ people to evacuate, so we proceeded to a new building to eat. Around 2pm we were picked up by George in our Cardinal bus.
We traveled about 3 hours to Lancaster, Pennsylvania for our day’s performance. We were warmly welcomed at East Chestnut St. Mennonite Church with a hot meal, which we shared with several high school students from the area who are admitted to GC. They also had to-die-for chocolate cupcakes to finish off the meal. Following, we had our service at 7pm. After doing some group warm-ups and meaningful meditation we began the service with our usual crowd-stunning “Cry Out, and Shout”. We were able to do our full program for the first time this trip, and the crowd was lively and receptive. We enjoyed seeing some familiar faces in the audience as well. We concluded with our benediction, “Hymn to the Eternal Flame”, holding hands. It was an especially powerful moment for us and the audience. I’m not going to lie, I teared up. After the service was a dessert reception before we headed to our respective host families from East Chestnut St. Mennonite Church.