DC, There and Back Again

There’s nothing like ending a long project with a weekend getaway with friends. For me, that means hopping on a train to DC to visit the fabulous Ingrid and awesome Callie.

My train arrived in the early hours of Saturday morning and I took a 10 minute cab ride up to Capitol Hill to meet Ingrid at her impressive row house. We swapped work tales, I learned about the local hero Mr. Outlaw, and I finally put my head to a pillow just after two in the morning!

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Saturday was in a word: perfect. Ingrid and I started off at the grocery store, buying ingredients and supplies for our baking and picnic adventures later in the weekend all while we wandered the aisles, Starbucks in hand, wondering how life would be like if we were Dallas housewives.

Later that morning we met up with Callie at Eastern Market. There we sampled more than our fair share of fruits, admired jewelry, caught up on each other’s lives, and even tried some apple flavored bbq sauce – it wasn’t half bad!

We picnicked on the lawn of the Capitol, in the lush grass and beneath a shade tree. The air was warm, the sky was blue, and I was quite content to be amongst such good friends! Callie had rehearsal to attend and so Ingrid and I walked back to her house, put up our feet, and watched some good ‘ol GCB.

With baking supplies (and champagne!) in tow, Ingrid and I caught the orange line out to Arlington, VA to attend Callie and Jerry’s quite impressive dinner party! It was good to see mutual friends from college. My old roommate Selena who had married Callie’s brother ,Will, were quite the welcome surprise! Jerry crafted Kir –  a delicious french cocktail – and dinner consisted of caper topped pizzettes, corn chutney, baked fish and greens. For dessert I whipped up my famous pound cake and I even had the gang try out some Cafe Bombón as well…they weren’t too keen on the espresso drink but everything else turned out wonderfully!

As we ate the last of our cake and everyone else politely avoided the rest of their espressos, I couldn’t help but take in the friendly and almost familial atmosphere of the evening. It was like we never left school and we were all back in the common room, sipping on teas near the fire place, avoiding studying for that next big exam.

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Sunday morning I surprised Ingrid by going to church! She took me to St. Peter’s where I happily learned that my favorite pope, JPII, had been canonized the night before. Callie joined us for brunch, which consisted of heart shaped waffles, bacon, eggs, strawberries, clementines and mimosas, and we later headed to Lincoln Park for a game of Boules. Callie and I tried our hand at synchronized cartwheels –  a success  I might add – and then I surprised myself at executing a one-handed cartwheel without breaking any wrists!

They early evening quickly came, and Callie, Ingrid and I joined Jerry, Will and Selena at the National Art Gallery for a free Eliot Fisk concert that Callie had been looking forward to for weeks! While the seating was quite the haphazard game of musical chairs, I think we all enjoyed ourselves despite the ridiculous amounts of flora, which inhabited the museum space. However, I will say, I did enjoy Fisk’s partner in crime more: Paco Peña, a world-renowned flamenco guitarist.

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Night fell and we said our goodbyes as everyone piled into the Saab convertible. As they sped away beneath the starry night and black sky, Ingrid and I made the trek over to see my favorite man on the National Mall: Abraham Lincoln.

I’m not sure what it is, but I’m always in awe when looking up at the Lincoln Memorial. Basking in the grandeur of his memorial always sends chills down my spine and standing where Martin Luther King Jr. once stood when delivering his famous speech reminds me of how much my family has overcome.

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With enough energy for one last hurrah, Ingrid and I headed back to Eastern Market and dined at Matchbox Pizza in barracks row.

Neither one of us wanted to go to bed and put an end to our weekend adventure, so we stayed up as late as possible watching more GCB before turning off the lights.

Monday morning reluctantly arrived and Ingrid and I walked to Union Station where I boarded my train back to New York. As I settled into my seat, pulling my hood over my eyes, I smiled at the thought, “DC is always a good idea.”

Till next time!

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