Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Fountain of Youth

This town is a veritable Fountain of Youth. Sure, all the politicians that come here look worse for the wear because they work long hours at procrastinating, making long winded speeches and campaigning (based on observations from satire columnists and Legally Blonde 2), so they don't necessarily look young.

For me, however, everyone thinks I'm fresh (or only ripe a couple of years) out of undergrad. I had to explain to one person that when I said, "I graduated in 2004," that I meant from undergrad, not high school. And then the wheels start spinning and they ask if I'm a kid genius (duh). Then I have to explain even further that I graduated undergrad in 2004 at 21 and earned my Masters in 2008. The wheels keep spinning, and that's when they realize I'm not 22-24, that I'm in my late 20's.

Which, considering it was suggested to get Botox and Restalin in Denver, I'll take this.

I also catch myself realizing that I have a ridiculous amount of responsibility and my life is so different from when I was 22-24. I'm, like, a grown up. Well, a grown up that watches kids movies on the reg, talks in abbreevs, and play kickball. Whatever, I'm not the same.

So, if you're looking for a little boost in your self-esteem at your age, I suggest a trip out here to DC to recharge those batteries. It's better than Botox.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Deliveries Accepted

Since moving to the District, I have gotten some packages and cards from friends and families all over. I love getting things in the snail mail!

Here's what came today:
(Not pictured: Yoga DVD.)
First, I'll explain what's not pictured: the yoga DVD. Jenn that came to town my first real weekend here and she was sweet enough to think of me and send me a yoga DVD from Jennifer Anniston's trainer! So excited to try it out!

Now, onto the troubling: trash bags. I received an unmarked envelope with just the bag of trash bags. I instantly called my mom thinking it was from crossed-wires with my grandma. Well, it wasn't her, but she said that maybe someone was reading my blog and read that I needed trash bags because they charge for them here. Next on my list was my aunt. Sure enough, she sent me the trash bags because she read that I needed them. She also sent the framed quote:
She wasn't where she had been. She wasn't where she was going...but she was on her way.
Perfect for this little sojourn I am on.

I also got some gorgeous roses from my aunt and uncle in Minnesota. They haven't opened up yet, but they smell divine and really brighten up my living room!

I would like to also extend an invite for deliveries while I'm recuperating from "discovering" the city. I mean, there's so many "sights" that I have to drink it all in. So, naturally, I have a DC hangover. Acceptable goods: Slurpees, french fries, and hair of the gluten-free dog. kthanksbye

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Kickball Opening Day

As part of my friend-network-expansion, I joined a WAKA kickball team through a friend-of-a-friend-of-a-friend. (Three degrees, if you will.) Our team? The Declawed Kittens. 

Opening Day was this past Thursday and it was as if Mother Nature knew. It was sunny and 70-ish here. While all of my friends were complaining about it snowing that day in Denver, I was enjoying the sun that I have been so desperately missing.

Thankfully, I was at the bottom of the roster and only went to bat once. And was immediately out. Everyone who knows me knows that I am better at making jokes, cheering, and nicknaming than hand-eye coordination. 

I didn't think to take any pictures of the team or the game, but we have about 15-ish people that were rotating in and out of the game. We didn't win, but we never claimed to be champs.

Here's to a fun season!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

I Hate to Break It to You, Denver...

...but, I'm having an affair with DC.

Today, I went to a farmer's market and then walked around the 'hood a little.

In all, I trekked 4.25 miles around this town. (Thanks to Map My Run. Best thing ever for seeing how much you walk/run.)

The farmer's market was AH. MAZE. ZING. There are organic and natural vendors for milk, cheese, eggs, meats, poultry, bread, pastries, gelato, soups, dips, jams, preserves, flowers and of course, veggies and fruits, oh my! I have to make sure that before I hit Whole Foods & the like, that I make it to the farmer's market first to get all of the amazing offerings! I can't wait for next weekend. I found some delicious and MASSIVE apples from a local farmer.
See? I told you. Massive. Point of comparison a 12 oz. can of soda.
From the farmer's market, I walked down 16th Street to the Lafayette Square, the White House, President's Park, then up through to Logan Circle. It was a perfect little two and a half hour walk and tourist outing that also let me see even more areas of the town.

The backside of the White House - Buddy was playing in the yard.
Eisenhower Executive Office Building with the First Division Monument.
The White House
Behind the Department of the Treasury, guys were playing roller hockey and they had a Wayne's World "Car/Game On" system for the Secret Service Police.
He's on the Twenty and has statue with cannons in Lafayette Square
Gorgeous little gardens in the President's Park & Lafayette Square
My next plan is to print out some of my pictures and start creating some pieces to hang on my bare wall.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Things I Miss the Most

Aside from the family, dog, friends that I could spout out about missing, (special shout out to Harry who's the most popular dog because he's pictured on my credit card), I do miss some things:
  • Mexican food. Seriously, Chipotle isn’t going to cut it for long. Not to mention, they don’t have the brown rice out here yet.
  • Sunshine. The sun really does shine in Colorado a whole lot more than anywhere else.
  • Weekend planning. This whole threat of a government shutdown really messes with my ability to go to other monuments and memorials that I haven’t hit up yet. There’s so much of this town that’s tied to government funding that it really cramps my style.
  • Having the news at 10pm. Really, asking me to stay up until 11pm for the local news is really asking too much.
  • Bootcamp at 5:30am. I know, that sounds like torture, but you’re done with a kick ass workout by 6:30am and you have the rest of the day to do whatever.
  • Casual Friday. So, the definition of casual Friday in Denver is jeans. Those comfy pants that transition easily into happy hour and beyond…here, I have “Khaki Friday”…that’s khakis, a polo and sweater to work…which is lame compared to jeans.
  • Sushi. You would think that being so close to water and an abundance of fresh fish that I would be literally swimming with delicious sushi. Not so. Every time that I’ve had fish here – sashimi, nigiri, tuna steak, canned tuna even – it smells and tastes like fish. If you’ve ever had good fish, it should taste like butta and melt in your mouth. Seriously, where’s the damn fish? This bitty is about to get pissed.
  • Free grocery bags. I get that you’re saving the environment, but can’t we have a “first one free” program? I have bathroom trash cans that need liners. That would be great, thanks.
Have you ever moved to a new place - across the country or across town - and took the little things for granted?

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Cherry Blossoms and Familiar Faces

Over the weekend, we managed to make it down to the Tidal Basin and check out the blossoms before the winds whipped the blossoms away. The blossoms were gorgeous, but the tourists? Not so much.

I guess that the tourist season begins now and ends with....winter. Oh well, I guess I was once one of the droves of tweens in the city on a school trip.

In the meantime, I got some great shots.

I'm just sitting out here watching airplanes...take off...and flyyyyyyyy

My turn at the artful framing of blossoms
Kicking it with TJ

Another artsy shot.
 This weekend, there were also a couple of Deltas in town that I got to catch up with, meet their DC peeps, and try out some bars and restaurants in the 'hood.
A Delta from Denver. (Side note: check homeboy's face behind me. Hysterical.)

More Deltas for dinner.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Driving in DC

This weekend, I took my first Zipcar out and about the District to run some errands and see different parts of the town.

I had "Common" a little Honda Civic that zipped me around town. Up to Columbia Heights for a Target run, over to Georgetown for a little shopping and a much needed manicure, and then criss-crossing through town to get back to my apartment.

Yeah. I'm the tourist taking a picture of the cart escalator at Target.

The biggest test of the day? Dupont Circle.

Dupont Circle reminds me of the scene in National Lampoon's European Vacation where Clark Griswald gets stuck in the circle and cannot merge out of traffic. Entering the circle, I had flashes of honking horns, short stops, and sweaty palms.

Alas, I had none of that! There was so much traffic in the Circle, I only had to merge and exit. It was a slo-mo transition.

I survived and feel like I know my way around the town. Slowly but surely I'm becoming a little more of a local!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Getting Out There

At one of my first happy hours, I learned of all sorts of rec leagues in DC. There's wiffle ball, bocce ball, and kickball...and that's just what my new found friends do. At the advice of several friends, I knew that I wanted to look into perhaps even be a free agent with some teams to get out and meet people.

So far, in two outings, I have been recruited for two kickball teams and potentially a wiffle ball team. I only say potentially for the wiffle ball because it requires hand-eye coordination and I really only possess foot-eye coordination as demonstrated with kicking ass and kicking that pigeon in Italy.

A little off topic, but a great way to get a local number without turning from your roots (I will always be a 303 girl) you can get a Google Voice number. Just tell them the area code and if you have words you want it to spell, they will see what's available. From there, you get to browse through all sorts of numbers. What's great is that it's automatically set up to forward to any number you choose. So, I have my new local number forwarded to my 303 cell phone. I'm a local and a 303 girl all at once!

With all of these new adventures, I am excited to meet new people, see new parts of the city, and generally revel in the fact that I live in our nation's capital.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Country Mouse and City Mouse

I have lived in the heart of a major U.S. city. But this? Is truly a MAJOR city.

I have spent time in Boston, Houston, Atlanta, but I have not have anything like DC. I live in a part of town call Dupont Circle named for a very complicated traffic circle with the same name. I haven't been able to truly get into all the shops, restaurants, and bars, but I like what I see! The neighborhood is quaint and clean, full of people, a great energy, and amazing views. (That's a whole post in itself.)

I have been to a Safeway and the Whole Foods, but WOW, I was not prepared for this. The stores by comparison to Denver are teeny tiny and the prices are inflated from Denver. I mean, $1.39 for one orange?! Really?! That's a little steep. But, I guess there's a high overhead with rent, transportation, storage, and locale. I am pleased to see the Whole Foods is competitive with prices for the everyday groceries.

I am really happy that people are friendly and very welcoming. I have talked to a lot of people in the neighborhood, introduced myself to one of my neighbors (I haven't seen the other one.) I have to admit I was a little concerned that people would be a little snooty and distant, scoffing at the country mouse from Colorado who wears pearls and cowboy boots.

There's an increased level of convenience here. I found a hardware store with a connected housewares store that's a mix between an antique store and Bed Bath & Beyond. They have everything...including denim patches.

I know I haven't even gotten to really be in the city, but so far, I like it!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

The Happiest of Hours

As I've already blogged about, the work was very mind boggling. Thankfully, I have had a couple of happy hours to unwind with coworkers and new friends.

That's something about this town. They do happy hour. Maybe it's because there are more people to begin with, maybe it's because some of them are tourists on vacation. (Which, I can't blame them if they are toting about any of the screaming children or moody tweens.) But, these people congregate, mingle, and talk about everything.

I have also now met with my virtual friend Jen! Our mutual friend Tricia connected us when she learned that I was moving to her friend from New York's 'hood. The crazy part of meeting her was actually meeting her friend first by pure happen stance as we were waiting at the bar. Such a small world.

Thankfully, DC is a small world, not a small town like Denver was for me.

Apologies, too, to any twitter followers for the onslaught of tweets post HH with Jen, but you were warned.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Getting Settled

I'm slowly getting settled into my apartment and my routine.

I have some organization to work on in the bathroom and bedroom, but I know where to find things (THANKS IN LARGE PART TO DAISY) and I know how to find my way around town. OK, the parts of town I've been in.

I am even a mass transit user. Not just for random games, nights at the bar, or when I visit other cities. I am a SmarTrip toting Metro commuter.

I'm totes offish.
My office is now all comfortable after more phone calls to the help desk (who I have on speed dial) and moving my computer around. I am also more comfortable finding my way through the labyrinth of offices.

I also feel much better about the work. I was insecure that I would be useful or even smart enough to be with these people. I mean, their talking was so above my head I felt like my head was swirling. Today, though,'s like the pieces fell into place in my head and I can see how I will not only fit into this puzzle, but I'm really excited about it!

And as I come home, I take the time to get some pieces put into place. I figure I can do a little every work day and a big effort on my days off. As I unpack, I have also found little pictures that my mom and grandma have stashed in random places in my luggage. (I teared up. It's my mom and grandma. And cute pictures of the family and my grandpa.)

As a follow up, I was able to get the purse out of the desk.