Of Personalities and Presidents

Of Personalities and Presidents

Excelsior, true believers! Well, it’s been almost two weeks since I first landed in Washington, D.C., and it has been one whirling dervish of a ride already. From the first night of walking around the capital, I knew that I was in love with the city. I’m guessing some of you suburbanites or rural folk won’t know what I’m talking about, but for me every big city has a kind of rhythm to it. The music of D.C. is definitely not that of my home of Minneapolis, but the symphony of sights and sounds still made me think “yeah, I could see myself living here.”


Part of what makes the city so appealing to me is the combination of an unapologetically big city personality with a smaller geographic area. Over the past ten days, I was able to make my way all over the city by road, rail, or sidewalk, and navigation was especially aided by the positioning of numbered and lettered streets and avenues and the intuitive subway system. Washington, D.C. has all of the opportunities of a big city, but manages to compact the experience so that nothing feels too far out of reach. The Washington Center being strategically placed near a Metro station certainly doesn’t hurt matters either!


I’ve only scratched the surface of what the city has to offer thus far, but that still means checking out local restaurants, karaoke, or the announcing of a candidacy for president. Yes, you read correctly. I was there in George Mason University when former Governor Lincoln Chafee announced his bid. Not only was this a great experience, and something to check off an item from the ol’ bucket list, but I also got to exchange contact information with potential employers, meet other young professionals in the field, and get my picture in the Bloomberg News. These are the kind of opportunities that are few and far between anywhere in the country but here.


Me and Linc


My week wasn’t all just high-intensity political drama though. I also got to take in a beautiful symphony at the Kennedy Center on Friday. It turns out that an hour of Mozart and Onslow was exactly what I needed to relax after a long hard week of working. Remember folks, balance is key in all things.


Before the Music


Well, week one’s under my belt, and I think that it’s safe to say that I’m getting the groove of things here in D.C. and soon I’ll be living like a native.


Ryan’s Recs

If you can afford it, get an unlimited Metro pass. First of all, it is very difficult to navigate the ins and outs of changing fares with different times. Furthermore, an unlimited fare lets you get more trips out then just budgeting for getting to and from your internship site, whether those be trips to explore the city’s many opportunities or simply because of getting lost. It’s a pretty sizable investment, but it helps in the long run, trust me.


Speaking of events, keep your eyes peeled for some of the many free events in D.C. Whether it’s a concert, a speaker, or a movie, there is so much to do in the city that you don’t have to pay for, which is a pretty good way to make up for the money spent on the unlimited Metro pass.


Try to collaborate on meals with your roommates when you can. This week, we all chipped in the component parts to make delicious hamburgers, with different guys providing the toppings, cooking the meat, and cleaning up afterward. Not only does this help split up the food costs and labor duties, but it also provides a way to bond with the people you’ll be spending the summer with.


Three Young Men Grocery Shopping


Finally, accept that there are going to be some days when you get to see someone announce their candidacy for president and there are going to be some days when you drop a box of pastries while it’s raining and you have to lug the soaked remains into the nearest building to throw them out. That’s what life is, friends.


Until next time, faithful readers, stay gold!

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