Slummin’ in the nation’s capital

Last night, I returned to DC to wipe my hands clean of the city. I need to clear out the apartment and divorce myself from this place, but unfortunately the breakup is going to be harder than I anticipated, mainly because DC is incompetent. My uncle, who lives in the area, argues that it barely qualifies as a city. I tend to agree.

I arrived at Union Station thirty minutes late last night, but because I got to the metro station at 11pm, I assumed I’d have plenty of time to catch two subways home before the system’s midnight close. As usual, the red line was inaccessible. I sat on the platform for 45 minutes before abandoning the underground subway to catch a cab. It’s unacceptable that DC’s public transportation system is so unreliable. This is supposed to be the center of everything, yet WMATA refuses to run trains 24 hours or even abide by the subway schedule. People in New York complain about having to wait ten minutes for the subway, but I’ve never known anything but waiting ridiculous amounts of time for the metro. Nevertheless, last night was infuriating. It didn’t help that I had a migraine and the voices of the high school students behind me were so shrill and obnoxious, my blood pressure sky rocketed. I normally have a pretty high tolerance for annoying folks, as I talk and laugh incessantly myself, but I was ready to rumble at that moment.

Luckily, I shared a taxi with two other young Arlington residents and calmed down in the car. Right before we got to Virginia, someone on the radio said, “Hanky panky,” prompting the foreigner cabbie to ask us to define the term. We laughed and mumbled something about it having ambiguous meanings. That put me in a better mood for the evening.

Today, I headed down too Leesburg to see my uncle, aunt, and grandparents. On the ride to Virginia, my cousin and I spotted the Georgetown Cupcake van, which is quite aesthetically pleasing and inspiring if you ask me:

As much as I gripe about DC, I cannot deny the beauty and sense of comfort I feel in northern Virginia, which is the prettiest place on earth during fall. The trees, leaves, and overall mood remind me why living in seemingly perfect California isn’t everything. One thing I missed out on growing up out west was the changing of seasons. Though I loathe snowfall and winter, the cold weather and seasons help me appreciate warmth once summer rolls around.

It was actually relaxing to leave NYC for soothing northern Virginia today. The pace is much slower, and the nature calms me down. Yes, I remain overwhelmed by my move, but it’s hard to be stressed out in a charming setting. Visiting with family also puts me in a good state of mind. A year ago this week, I came down to Leesburg and remember feeling frozen. It doesn’t seem as impossibly chilly right now, but I wonder if I’ve simply adapted to east coast cold weather since then. If so, I still have tons of work to do, as NYC winter is much more vicious and aggressive than that of the DC area. At least I have a long jacket now.

In New York world, I’m semi-settled into my Brooklyn pad. I may have an air mattress, but I’ve never slept better in my life. Hopefully the cats won’t pop it! That reminds me: My roommate has two adorable felines, both of which are as friendly as dogs. They visit me all the time. The concept of a nice cat is so out of my realm, being that I grew up with a feral kitty who spent much of her life on the top of our garage furnace. She never let anyone hold her and died of a heart murmur prompted by anxiety, so I didn’t think it would be possible to encounter a brave cat. This one is, though:

At the end of the day, I’m a dog person. Here is my cousin Kerry’s precious pup:

In spite of everything I have to do, I’m having an amazing time hanging out in Leesburg for the weekend. Can’t wait to see my cousin’s horse tomorrow.


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