It's the Little Things in Life

It's the Little Things in Life

I'm a big believer that it's the little moments in life that can make or break an experience. Looking back on my semester - which ended less than one week ago - there are so many little moments that have become so important to my TWC experience. And that's what this blog is all about. I've kept track of these moments throughout the past 15 weeks and I'm going to share a number of them with you guys.

 

Night In. Yes... I Have Those!

And I have to say, one of the best nights I had here in Washington, D.C. was a Friday night that I spent staying in with my apartment mate, Katie Mount (here on out referred to just as Mount). Honestly, I can't really remember why I stayed in or where my other roommates went, but I will forever remember the rest of the details of that night. If you remember, I went to high school with Mount. That night, we started reminiscing, sharing untold stories, Facebook creeping on Township kids (yea... we do that...), eating Nutella, and even emailing our high school English teacher by whom we both were positively impacted. We laughed so much; I can't remember the last time I had such a great time one-on-one with a friend! We even have jokes and one-liners we throw around now, and only we understand. I'd tell you stories of some of the funny things, but you'd probably think I'm even crazier than you already do! Instead, I'll just say, "MY LAPTOP!!!" (To Katie Mount: mwah!)

 

The Escalators

If you've been to D.C. and have ridden the metro, you know that some of the escalators are wild - particularly the escalator at the DuPont Circle stop. I frequent that escalator often on Friday and Saturday nights with my roomies and friends. Each time we get on, camera phones come out and a photo shoot commences... and so does our weirdness! We made friends on those escalator rides... Caps fans coming home from the playoffs, a guy with a WILD beard, a group of teens on their way to an EDM show.. the list goes on. I will say, I'm going to miss those escalator rides!

 

Escalator at DuPont

Kimberly and Mount on the escalator one of our last weekends in D.C.

This is one of the more mild photos!

 

Coffee

I live on it. I'm pretty sure it's become part of my blood. A day without it is like... well... I actually don't know because I can't remember the last time I went a day without coffee. My addiction has become worse since being in D.C., as I worked solid eight hour days and always have things going on afterward. Since I had off on Mondays, I trekked to Ebenezer's on 2nd and F in the Northeast and spend four or so hours doing work... homework, program work, Genocide Watch work. I'd EASILY down 2 large coffees. At work Tuesday thru Friday, Donga - my fellow intern at Genocide Watch - came to limiting the number of cups I drink each day since it's actually bad for you to drink as much as I do. I don't know what I'm going to do when Donga is no longer there to monitor... I know she'll be Facebooking me each day reminding me of my cup limits. She's just that great!

 

The coffee mug my boss gave me to use at work. Makes my day starting each morning with this mug!

 

A Laugh

The other day, actually, one of my apartment mates shrieked and ran out of her bathroom into the kitchen/living area, bugging out - literally. See, she went to get in the shower and was instead attacked by a giant fly. Being the man of the apartment, I puffed up my chest and pranced head held high into the bathroom to get that bugger! Yea. About that. I think I underestimated the size of this fly... Thing was huge! Check it out...

 

The monstrous fly!

This bad boy terrorized my roommate!

 

But no worries; after a spectacle during which I attempted to stomp on the fly, air bite it, and throw things at it, I finally caught it simply by placing the bath mat over it while it took a break from fleeing my attempts (it probably took a break to laugh at the ludicrous nature of the human... WHO'S LAUGHING NOW?!). Got eem! Problemo solved.

 

President Obama

Everyone in D.C. has thought about seeing Obama. And then there are the many of us crazies who actually have tried seeing him. And then there are the even smaller number of us LUNATICS who have actually left work and took a walk up the street because we saw a motorcade driving up the street and noticed that morning that one of our lunch spots was closed up and had security and men in suits out front. Yes, that's right. I went Obama hunting in Arlington, VA where I work. Unfortunately, to no avail. The next day we found out that it wasn't actually Obama, though. It was Vice President Biden - though that's still pretty cool, right!? Maybe one day I'll actually see one of them!

 

The motorcade outside The Liberty Tavern in Arlington... we were sneaky trying to catch a glimpse of Obama.

 

Sentiments from Stanton

One of the greatest memories I'll take away from D.C. is my memory of Dr. Stanton. That's SEVERELY simplified though... it's really a bunch of moments/stories/experiences that will compose my memory. Dr. Stanton has lived THE LIFE... Peace Corps in Cotê d'Ivoire. Lived in Cambodia, Rwanda, U.S., and many more. Married. Went to University of Chicago for his PhD. Started law school at University of Chicago. Finished law school at Yale. Harvard Divinity School. Adopted 2 children from Cambodia - one of which was the first baby to be adopted from the country since the genocidal regime. Worked as a Foreign Service Officer. Helped start the International Criminal Tribunal of Rwanda and the Cambodian Tribunal. Founded an NGO. Served as the president of International Association of Genocide Scholars. I could go on... He's done so much for human rights and he's an EXPERT on genocide.

 

From day one, he's told us countless stories about his experiences with genocide, non-profits, activism, the government, the United Nations, and the likes.

 

His stories? Incredible. His impact? Unforgettable.

 

It's something to be said about the people you'll meet in D.C. I can only hope that everyone gets to meet one person like this in their life. He's an inspiration, to say the absolute least. And a word of advice when you do meet this person: listen. To whatever he/she has to say. People like Dr. Stanton have paved the way in their field. Take advantage of opportunity when they want to share stories and experiences. I've listened to everyone of Dr. Stanton's stories - whether I was supposed to be doing something else, getting ready to leave the office for the day, or had to use the bathroom worse than I ever had to before. And I never interrupted. And I have to say, I know those stories are already impacting my future and plans.

 

Airborne

Toxic Event that is! My little brother and I are bound by a few things... our blood relations and tattoos on our wrists being the most prominent. What we also share is a love of music and going to shows. And when I say love, I mean obsession. And when I say going to shows, I mean pushing to the front and rocking OUT to our favorite artists. So when my brother found out that his favorite band, Airborne Toxic Event, was touring and stopping in D.C., he scooped up tickets. He drove down with his boyfriend, Rico, and best friend, Kerry, and the four of us spent the afternoon together before heading to the 9:30 Club for the show. It was the first time I'd been to a concert in D.C. - weird for me since I usually go to one a month! And this was the last Thursday I would be in D.C. (May 9th). So not only was it cool to be with my brother, but the 9:30 Club was sick and it was awesome to be doing one of my "hobbies" that I hadn't done in so long. Plus, it was the first time I've seen Airborne Toxic Event live and they were... AMAZING. In fact, I saw them again the very next Sunday! It was a great moment to have in D.C.

 

Airborne Toxic Event

Airborne Toxic Event... check out how close we were!

 

It's easy for me to say that these moments became such a part of my D.C. story. When thinking back on my semester, it wasn't hard to recollect these memories to retell the stories for you guys. They're moments that I think I'll remember for a while, moments that helped shape my experience. I know escalator rides and killing flies wouldn't normally become a defining moment of someone's semester, but when you laughed as much as I did or acted as crazy as I did with my friends, you realize that the fun you have in the littlest moments make a night or create an inside joke to last a lifetime. Those are the things that matter the most.

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