Published On: Sat, Jun 10th, 2017

Touching Trucks

It’s been a couple of years since we first went to Truck Touch, somehow missing the date last year.  But because of Najwa’s swimming lessons, we only caught the last couple of hours of this year’s event.  Held in the parking lot of RFK Stadium, it’s an array of a bunch of vehicles operated by the DC government, from emergency and law enforcement vehicles, to utility vehicles, to dump trucks, to bulldozers, to street cleaners, to everything that has an ignition.

Truck Touch DC 2017
Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium
Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium
This truck was used to give perspective about blind spots around large vehicles, especially when making turns.
Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium

No matter what the event, the reason why anyone goes anywhere with their kids, if there’s a moon bounce, all else means nothing until and at least a few minutes hopping around.  Last time we came, there was one moon bounce, a fairly small one with a long line of parents with kids who had no interest in trucks until they crawled into the moon bounce.  This year, there were two, one for the smaller kids, and a much larger one for the small yet bigger kids.

Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium

In addition to trucks, there are these booths set up with different DC government agencies talking about what they do.  One of them explained the recycling program.  In DC we have to separate our trash from recyclable items, which I’m sure they do in most cities.  But what happens with the recycled product?  The employees of DC Public Works explained how the plastics are separated from hard and soft plastics, based on if they float in water or not [well, something like that], then the plastics are used to build stuff, like bridges. Literally, bridges. They even had photos of bridges made from recycled plastic. One with a military tank on it. Who knew?

After the lesson, Najwa was given her badge for being a junior inspector and she’s charged with making sure we recycle products in the house correctly.

Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium

Eventually, we got around to hopping in some trucks.  You see the all the time, but until you have to lift a six year old to get in do you realize how big some of these vehicles are.

Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium
Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium

DC National Guard was out there with their military-grade vehicles.  One was a troop transporter.  The roof of where you sit, which was like a cockpit, can be unscrewed and a machine gun installed.  Najwa didn’t understand the purpose of that.  Or why the helmets were so heavy.

Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium
Maybe with a pair of Oakleys she would’ve looked more like a solider?
Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium
Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium
Najwa was concentrating more on keeping the helmet on her head than posing for a photo.

Another emergency vehicle we visited was for Foam Unit 2 which is assigned to the President of the United States.  It’s a huge fire truck with this thing in the front, I’m guessing that shoots out foam to put out fires.  Instead the cabin, it was wide enough to sit several people side by side, though there were only two seat.  There was this joystick in the console to control the foam sprayer thing, though it looked like it was more for flying a jet.

Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium
Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium
Truck Touch DC 2017 at RFK Stadium

As Najwa crawled into these vehicles,  I kept imagining if a seed is planted, and one day she does it as a profession.  There’s the backhoe and cherry pickers, but I don’t see her getting into construction.  I have no issues with her joining the National Guard, considering Uncle Sam will help pay some of Najwa’s tuition.  That and they were blasting a Rare Essence go-go version of Hello.  Or maybe Najwa grows up to be a fire fighter, protecting POTUS.

Whatever she decides to be when she grows up, we’re going to expose her to as many things as we can and just hope she doesn’t end up in the circus thanks to the moon bounce.

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About the Author

David Gaines

- David Gaines is a Washington, DC, resident transplanted from North Carolina whose dream career was a newspaper writer but settled for the recruiting industry and simply blogging about whatever thoughts crosses his mind.

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