Good News & Goodbyes & Good Food

Good News & Goodbyes & Good Food

Time is quickly running out for us here at The Washington Center. In a few short weeks, we return to our previous lives, and for some of us, myself included, that means graduation. I’m looking forward to putting all the papers and the commuting to class behind me, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t going to miss the people. I’ve made a lot of friends back home at USF (and a couple new ones here at TWC), so it will be hard to say goodbye. You may be asking yourself, “well Josh, if you live in Florida, why do you have to say goodbye?” Well, ladies and gentlemen, that is because I GOT A JOB! Can you believe it?! One of my many job applications actually returned a result. I was shocked to say the least. The job is at the Statue of Liberty in New York City, where I will work as a front-line representative of the National Park Service greeting guests, giving tours, and otherwise making the green & grey uniform look the best it’s ever looked. If any of you make your way to NYC this summer, be sure to stop by and look for me! Familiar faces are always welcome, especially when moving to the biggest city on the planet.


That is as close as I got a few weeks ago. Looks like I'll be getting much more acquainted with her pretty soon.


In other news, this past weekend the Trip to the Baltimore Harbor, incidentally enough…. was cancelled. The bus never showed up. We waited out in the parking lot for nearly two hours, wasting a good portion of our morning. Certainly it was frustrating, but it does no good to lay blame. Even so, I like to consider myself a pretty resourceful fellow, and as such I was determined to get to Baltimore before the day was over. An Amtrak ticket and a little over an hour later – I arrived at my destination.


Baltimore, especially the inner harbor, was extremely crowded. Not only was it spring break apparently, but there was also some sort of middle school cheerleading convention going on. The crowds in Times Square weren’t even that bad. The worst part of it however was that aquarium – the one place I specifically wanted to see – was rationing tickets based on a queue system for later entry. Even though I was there by 3, I had to wait until 5 before I was allowed to enter. Combine that with the fact the aquarium closes at 7, it meant I had a very limited time to rush through. I didn’t even get time to visit the Australian exhibit that houses the freshwater crocodiles and frilled lizards. The building, like the rest of the harbor, was also VERY crowded, making getting a good photo or taking the time to pause and read about an animal or habitat virtually impossible.


A view from the harbor visitor center. The throngs of people were far worse than what is seen here.






This is a replica of the 15-star flag that inspired the Star Spangled Banner at Ft. McHenry, just a few miles away.


People were feeding these guys at the water's edge, so naturally I couldn't pass up the photographic opportunity.


Still, even in dealing with all that, I thoroughly enjoyed the aquarium. The Chesapeake watershed habitat exhibits were very well done, as was their rainforest aviary and amphibian vivariums. I would recommend it to anyone interested in such matters, but probably include the stipulation you visit on a weekday, for obvious reasons. Here are a few of the photos I managed to capture despite the poor lighting and excessive crowds. I have to laugh at the irony too: I visit an aquarium and photograph mostly reptiles, amphibians, and birds.










Of course, I couldn't leave Baltimore without first sampling some authentic Maryland seafood. Suffice it to say I indulged myself royally - and man, was it worth it. Crab is pretty much the greatest food ever. I challenge anyone who disagrees to try some of the crab stuffed shrimp I had that night - or the crabcake I had for the appetizer.



That about sums up things for now. Time is quickly winding down, so I find myself scrambling to check items off my “DC Bucket List” in the remaining weeks – both socially and at work.


Until next time.


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