The morning after the Bee held more excitement for Speller 128 and his family, but first, fortification. We met with Bee champion, Kavya Shivashankar and her parents at breakfast. I should say we had breakfast, they were running to get to one interview after another. Mr. Shivashankar shared the media schedule they'll be following for the next week; let's just say it will be hard to turn on any major network and not catch of glimpse of this lovely family.
We also had a final chat with Tom Bergeron, what a nice guy and, he's genuinely funny. Tom was flying up to Boston today to emcee tomorrow night's New England Emmy show. A native of Massachusetts, he was telling us how much he enjoys Boston in the Spring and Summer.
After breakfast we had to catch a cab (the cab driver knew exactly where to go) over to the NBC Studios. Barbara had surprised Daniel by setting up a meeting with NBC News Producer, Virginia Coyne. Virginia had interviewed Daniel and his friend Kennyi for The Today Show back in 2007, and Barbara and Virginia had kept in touch. We met with all of the technical personnel and they explained their jobs to Daniel. Then we met with Steve Handelsman, a National Correspondent for NBC News, who asked Daniel lots of questions about the Spelling Bee. Tracy Potts, a local NBC anchor, talked with Daniel about how younger kids look up to the Spellers as role models.
As if all the above were not thrill enough for an aspiring journalist, Daniel was then taken into the studio with the Capitol in the background (it's a real window, not a faux backdrop), miked up and able to read the news. Then Virginia interviewed him on camera about the Bee. She is having the reel edited and will be sending us the DVD - watch out Brian Williams.
Of course I must report on the food of the day, today we ate in The Source, a Wolfgang Puck restaurant that is near the Newseum. Like in all of Puck's restaurants, the food was very fresh and flavorful, but also presented in a dramatic fashion. This establishment is clearly a place to see and be seen on the Hill, we enjoyed the experience.
Fortified by a wonderful lunch, we then took on one of Washington's newest museums, the Newseum. This museum is dedicated to the preservation of the First Amendment Rights; we spent three hours in it and feel like we barely scratched its surface.
Now, we are moments away from the Bee's closing banquet which will be followed by a DJ and dancing for the Spellers. The banquet is a formal event, when we were here in 2007 it was filmed for the Food Network. Who knows what surprises might be in store for this year's soiree.
More later tonight or tomorrow - we'll have to see.