Take Me Out to the Cathedral

Take Me Out to the Cathedral

If you go read the other student blogs here at The Washington Center's website, you'll notice there's more of an excitement to their writings, as though their treks are like unwrapping the Christmas presents that the Beltway has to offer. Compare that to me, where I've got more of a vexed tone about Washington, D.C.

There's a reason for that. This is my third time around our nation's capital. I was here in July 2000. I was here in January 2001 (for the Bush inauguration, yes. I also want to confess I listen to Richard Nixon tapes every night as I'm drifting off into sleep). So, I'm here to take care of business and advance my career. I'm thankful that I've had a chance to visit these sites and attractions before, or else I would be very agitated that I don't get to spend time at these places because I'm working my gluteus maximi off.

But let's go back to that January 2001 trip for a moment. I'm 13 years old and I'm with my parents and my Aunt Susie in our 1993 blue and white GMC Suburban. We're down by the Lincoln Memorial at night trying to figure a way to pull in and park, but we kept getting thrown into this loop that would take us across the Potomac River to the Arlington National Cemetery.

Oh, wait! I'm not telling a very important detail. When my dad drove in Washington, D.C., he would more than likely get lost AND he would freak everyone out in the car by acting like we were soon going to drive into a ghetto and get into a shootout and lose because my dad would tell us, "I only have six shots!" Yes, my dad would keep a gun underneath the seat during our Washington, D.C. trips. Other than the accents, that was probably more proof we really were from the South.

So here we are getting lost again in D.C. down by the Lincoln Memorial, and as we miss the turn for about the fifth time, my dad decides to just take another turn off of impulse. Instead of going across the Potomac, we go RIGHT BESIDE the Potomac UNDERNEATH THE BRIDGE. For out of state hicks like ourselves, this was really looking scary. We were freaking out. The freaking out amped up when we drove UNDERNEATH the Kennedy Center as we thought we were going to pull into the parking lot and turn around.

Out came the motto of navigational madness: "I've only got six shots!"

As a thirteen year old kid, I start balling. This is it. We're going to drive into a ghetto and die.

Well, as my dad starts driving off of a whim after we pass the Kennedy Center, we looked out and saw the National Cathedral. Being a natural navigator, having honed my skills going to bed with the road atlas at age 8, I pulled out the map of Washington, D.C. We were on Wisconsin Avenue. All we had to do was follow it a certain route and we could get onto the Interstate and head back to our hotel in Laurel, Maryland.

It was a pretty big feat for a thirteen year old. I SAVED THE DAY! I saved the family from certain death and we saved six rounds. I was the ownage.

That's what I think of every time I hear or see the National Cathedral:



Oh, please don't tell me that's my thumb in the top left portion of the picture.





I went there for Easter service. Actually, I went to the Evensong service at 4:00 PM because the National Cathedral SELLS TICKETS for its 8 AM and 11 AM Easter services. I can't imagine. They starting selling the tickets on March 16th, if that gives you any indications as to how late out of luck I was in getting to go to the actual service.

In case you can't figure it out, the National Cathedral is an Episcopal church. The service was very much like a Catholic mass, except there was no Eucharist and they said the Apostles' Creed and they said "Ghost" as opposed to "Spirit." I could hardly sing along with the whole church because the organ and the choir were too cacophonous to sing in harmony. I couldn't hear the other singers. All I heard was the loud organ, which seemed to thunder through my entire soul.


They have flags from all of the 57 states hanging in the rafters there.

That's my home state.

That's my college's home state. And, don't tell anyone I told you this, but it really feels a lot like home to me now that I'm out here in Washington, D.C. I always thought Oklahoma was a little foreign whenever I was attending school there. But now that I really am far away from home, Oklahoma doesn't seem too bad.

To get off on the Metro to go to the National Cathedral, you have to get off at the Cleveland Park stop on the Red Line. As soon as you get up from the ground, you're in the middle of these restaurants that have sidewalk tables and so forth. I wonder what they would do if you sat down at one of these tables and started to eat a Subway sandwich or something.

So that's what I did this weekend. This week is a very big week for me because A) I'll be finishing up some Public Service Recognition Week videos for the Broadcasting Board of Governors (VOA's overseers), B) shooting a package for the Pulmonary Hypertension Association, C) presenting my capstone, and D) fulfilling my requirements for The Washington Center. I don't know what's going on with regards to that. I read the emails and I act accordingly. I feel like an automaton. Too bad I have to get a job IMMEDIATELY after graduating, because I would enjoy a good summer break before getting back to the grindstone.

Anyway, whatever. Happy Easter.

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