Musings of a District'er
Yes, I am now referring to myself as a District'er. Two months is long enough, right? I think so. I was berated by a friend that I have not been updating my blog so here goes....
The past two months have gone incredibly fast. Faster than any other time I have experienced (I don't know if that is quantifiable) in my life. Since my last post, I have traveled to Mt. Vernon, almost gone on a White House tour, ventured back to God's Country for a weekend, watched the Frogs wreak havoc on the rest of college football, traveled to a pumpkin patch to view the "peak foliage," and FINALLY started wearing long pants and coats. More detail? Alrighty....
Along with some friends, I went out to Mt. Vernon (George Washington's farm) in nearby Virginia. The weather was perfect, and the tourists were crawling, but the history of the place is still pretty neat. Other than the actual house, replete with disney-esque plastic food and fake furnishings, the farm was amazingly beautiful. According to our tour guide, by the time George took over the family farm, the generations of tobacco farming had ravaged the soil in the whole area. Because of this, many of the landowners were selling their "bad" land and moving elsewhere to continue growing tobacco (apparently it was the "in" thing to do at the time). George, being the astute businessman and ag-expert that he was, starting buying up all the land surrounding his family's small estate. He acquired a pretty nice spread with over 8 miles of pristine Potomac river-frontage. (fact: did you know that almost half of the revenue from the farm came from fishing the Potomac river?)
Two weekends later I got the chance to travel back to Texas for TCU homecoming and to see my parents. It was a great weekend of relaxation and Mexican food. A lot of Mexican food.
On Halloween we drove out to a family farm in Poolsville, Maryland to pick some pumpkins to carve as we watched the Rangers in the World Series (RIP) and to view what is quasi-humorously called "peak foliage" season. Apparently here in the north (or at least the northern part of the south), peak foliage is big deal. The weathermen track when the "peak foliage" is so that everybody can be sure to look outside and go "WOW! how beautiful that foliage is at its peak" It has become a sort of joke for those of us not from around here to note, when we see a tree in metro DC to point and say "Oh, wow, how about that peak foliage."
We joke because we have never experienced such a thing called "autumn" in Texas. The trees that line the highways are all changing colors and ordering a pumpkin spice latte actually makes sense, both things that bring out a sense of jealousy for those of us from a locale that has an 80 degree Christmas followed by a White Christmas. Just saying.
And did I mention that the Horned Frogs are wrecking shop? Just saying.
If you have ever tried to go on a White House tour (at least since 9/11) it is a little bit of a process now. If you don't know someone currently working their or have a contact that does, you have to go through your Congressman to get in a group for a tour. They only do group tours. Fortunately for me, my boss here in DC is connected with a lot of people at the White House and got a group of people from our office on an East Wing White House tour (the generic tour, but it is still the WH). As a matter of fact, he actually got a more exclusive group of execs a private West Wing tour (very, very hard to do). Unfortunately for me, things did not quite work out as planned.
Per WH directions, we left our office (about .6 miles from the WH) at 8:45am with our group of 16 to be at the gate by 9 for our tour. As soon as we arrived, the first thing the guard said to our group was "No purses allowed. at all." Did I mention our group had 8 women? and 8 purses? Luckily for these 8 women it was about 42 degrees outside that morning, so it was obvious that none of them were going to be the one standing outside with a gaggle of purses. That's what interns are for, right? After offering my services and acting whole-heartedly like I didn't mind at all, I got to invent a whole new version of the walk of shame: walking around the Department of the Treasury and the White House with 8 large purses. I am certain that Tim Geithner looked out his window and had pity on me.
As I write this, the two girls across from me in the coffee shop are playing "connect 4" (as in, dropping red and black checkers pieces into a standing yellow frame) as if it were a cerebral game like Chess, spades, or go-fish. I have a strong urge to watch them intently and then exclaim, once a connect 4 is achieved, "nice move!"