Yesterday we went to Washington DC for one of our favorite Christmas trips, a visit to the gifts from Norway at Union Station. Norway decks the halls of Union Station with more than boughs of holly.
After ice skating at the National Gallery of Art Sculpture Garden, we walked to Union Station where we were greeted by the gorgeously lit and enormous wreaths of Union Station. Here is a page of photos of the hanging of the wreaths.
As we approached the station, I found the 32 foot tall Norwegian tree. This year the tree is decorated to represent Norwegian music. There is information about that here, with sound clips. We decided this was the prettiest tree we had seen while in Washington DC.
Each year, beginning in 1997, the Norwegian Embassy gifts a tree to Union Station to symbolize their friendship with America, kindly thanking us for helping them during and after WWII!
The Norwegian Embassy not only gifts us a spectacular tree, but also an incredible train display! Running across various tracks in different directions were "handmade replicas" of actual trains from Norway, "set in a Norwegian landscape of mountains and fjords." (http://dc.about.com/od/christmasevents/a/UnionStatChrist.htm)
Since Union Station is currently undergoing renovations, the displays are limited. A few years ago we got to see two train displays that the Norwegian Embassy had put on display, from 1950's to a mountain scene. The charm of these train displays has always beckoned us for visits. We hadn't been able to return for a few years, to our great disappointment, so this was at the top of our list this year. In fact, the trains were our first stop, followed by the ice skating, then the return trip where we discovered the tree!