Monday, September 27, 2010

Hitting the Ground Walking in D.C.

Well, I've arrived.  I now live in the District of Columbia.

Actually, I arrived almost a month ago, and from the looks of things, I will be consolidating this Danydgram and catching you up on what's happened in the last thirty days. 

You'd think after living in this amazing, fast-paced, and happy-hour-friendly city for nearly a month, I'd have my shit together, but think again!  As soon as I arrived, I was ignited with energy: something I thought I had left behind with the sleep I finally started to get once I was in Indiana.  The surge of energy, however, put me on a full-force, flip-flop-walking spree around the entire District with my dad and stepmom (Linda)--from Adams Morgan to the National Mall, the Glenn Beck Rally to the crazy rush-hour-filled lanes of Whole Foods.  We even trekked it out to Mount Vernon, but we made that trek in our rental.  Still, we didn't take a jeep tour on the grounds . . . just saying.

My first weekend here, 30 days ago exactly, was incredible.  It was probably one of the best so far.  I managed to get into great shape after my month-long lethargy of highway driving; meanwhile, I got a chance to discover some sights, sounds, food, and speakeasies before the rest of my UCDC cohorts arrived.  Needless to say when they finally did, I was bushwacked, but I prevailed, rallied, and pushed through to show the west-coasters from UC a real treat for their first week/weekend in DC.

Before I go much further, I need to pause and recognize what truly great parents I have, the places we went while they were here, and for driving my firecracker ass all the way from Indianapolis, IN.

Thank you Dad and Linda.  I love you both.

George Washington's swanky home and resting place.  Mount Vernon, Alexandria, VA

Yup, I was there--so were about 400k tea-baggers.

So was she.  Sexy teabagher.

From Thailand to the Smithsonian Natural History Museum, with love.  I think this lizard shows why our mothers say "do not make that face because it will stick."

Mind trick.

It's safe to say I work here part-time . . . in lobbies. 

Like a good friend of mine would say, "So sick!"

Another mind trick--Jedi style.

Self explanatory: a pose.

Just your typical ginger's presidential monument.

 Bronze ginger.  Name: T.J.

Not bad from the BlackBerry.

Thanks Dad because you did.

From the GW Monument, we can clearly see that a few tax dollars should be used for better grass.  Seriously.

We saw POTUS smoking a cigarette on the roof with some of the Secret Service guys via binoculars.  (Almost) a true story.

Lincoln passed on grass for water--my man.

TJ got a lake--ante up Lincoln.

Ford Theatre looks just like I remembered from 1993.

As you can see, we were very busy: early mornings, late nights, and loads of walking.  We only had the rental car our first day, and that was the day we went to Mount Vernon--totally worth the trip, expense, hassle, and before-8am-wake-up.

I checked into my new residence that following Monday (frame of reference: this was August 30), and a few hours later, good ole buddy ole pal o' mine, Mr. Ruben Chavez, showed up just in time for dinner.  I let him hang out in the room long enough to unzip his bags, but I eventually lured him out with the words: "free dinner if we meet my parents in Adams Morgan."  He quickly obliged.

We met at a nice place for dinner, but it wasn't Lauriol Plaza (one of my all-time favorite restaurants in this city and a place my Dad and stepmom took me to during the weekend).  Anyway, it was a very pleasant, tasty and free dinner; mostly, I was happy to have a companion now in DC to run amuck with--Rat Pack style.  Although the Rat Pack grew by one rat that night, the others weren't far behind . . .

(L-R: Sean Miller, Ruben Chavez, me, and Kevin Miller, guest and friend)

It was something of an extraordinary week once our other suite-mates--Waiswa (not pictured above) and Sean--checked in because due to some poor planning or whatever, we didn't start our internships or attend any of our classes until the Tuesday after Labor Day, so we literally had 8 days to run amuck in Washington, D.C.  Largely contributing to this running amuck was the fact that my old friend from the US Air Force, Rich Jones, came into DC from Delaware for the weekend and took me to his family's (Chesapeake) Bay house for Labor Day and then the following weekend, mine and Ruben's friend Kevin stopped in for about a week on his way to study in London for a year.  Here's the photo re-cap:

First night out with a big (and growing) group.

Just your typical Air Force One shoeshine.  He's a buddy of mine, Eddie Varley, and we think he looks a lot like Peyton Manning.

Homemade sangria for the 'Double Decker Booze Cruise" tour, but it fell through, so we used it for Sangria Pong instead.

The Guys in 608 were handed down the legendary UCDC beer pong table.  It's been getting a lot of use!

One night out, we met Mr. Belding--the principal from Saved By the Bell.

The Friday night before Rich came in from Delaware, I made last-minute plans and took a bus up to see my cousin Lindsey in NYC.  She lives in a beautiful flat in Williamsburg/Brooklyn, and above is a shot from her roof of Manhattan.

(L-R: Rich, Ruben, me)  Boys being boys.  He kicked my ass.

Beautiful Sunday at the Bay house with Rich's family.

Only the greatest chips around and choice care-package item.

Boise State v. Virginia Tech.  86,500 people attended this game.  Insane!

This is what happens when it gets too late and people just need to go to bed.  LMAO.  Sorry Kevin--I had to.

Singing loud and proud to who-remembers-what 80s song it was.

Great view of the GW Monument from W Hotel.

For the best breakfast in DC, I suggest the chilaquiles at Lauriol Plaza.

Live reggae band at Eighteenth Street Lounge has consistently pared for a good night for the past four Wednesdays.

Just a few in the UCDC crew after a small gathering in 608.  We did not, however, manage to fit in one elevator.

Aaaand casual Friday last week.

Well, there you have it.  The month of September is almost over, and things are continually getting better and better each week.  I'll be writing more frequently now and providing much shorter, quick reads to keep you entertained, full of random moments backed with laugh-out-louds.  


1 comment:

  1. WONDERFUL recap, son. I'm sure it will be easier to write shorter entries more frequently. But however, we all love keeping up with you this way. Excellent photos! xox Mom