Back in 1999, the Washington Monument needed major renovations. In order to keep the Monument as a focal point on the D.C. Mall while they were happening, architect Michael Graves surrounded the monument with a scaffolding made from 37 miles of aluminum tubing and then lit it. The scaffolding took four months to erect and became a tourist attraction all in itself. It was one of the best things about the Independence Day celebration that year. 

After the earthquake two years ago, they again closed the Monument and finally determined that damage from the quake was allowing water to enter the stonework. Without repair, the integrity of the structure could be compromised, so the scaffolding has been going back up for the last several months and was completed recently.  This Monday, they again lit it like they had back in '99.  

Both of The Shortlings are on an overnight camping trip The KingofHearts and his mini-me, The Knaveof Hearts, were off doing construction work in a friend's house last night, so I worked late and then headed to the mall to try and get a few photos that I never managed to get in 1999.  

As I walked up and tried to find a place to wait out the sunset, the wind started to blow and suddenly the heavens opened and emptied their wrath out upon me.  I managed a couple of decent pictures before I had to take refuge in the car to keep my camera dry.  Apparently, Mother Nature couldn't care less when you have a rare free night and will be happy to step on your plans whenever possible.  I managed to get a few photos later in the dark once the storm let up a bit, but it was still raining and I looked like a crazy person standing on the side of the tidal basin in the mud with a tripod.  So all in all, just a normal day.