What I miss about living in the D.C. area

If you followed me in my former life, you know I devoted lots of  Interwebs space to griping about D.C., which I found to be incredibly stuffy and uncultured. Though my views on the nation’s capital remain the same, I realized yesterday that I miss the area and should visit more often.

I woke up at 5:45 on Saturday morning to catch an Amtrak train, which arrived three and a half hours later, and I was relieved to show up to sunshine and humidity. Around noon, I taxied over to northern Virginia for my best college buddy’s baby shower, which gave the two of us a chance to catch up and laugh about school memories. It’s unusual to view the contrast between now and 2007, when we went out 3-4 nights a week, were attached at the hip, and served as each other’s wingman for Kappa Alpha parties. She graduated a year early, and before she moved back to D.C., we spent two days straight cleaning up her apartment. Back then, we did everything as a pair. We went on a KA date dash to Mexico together, did a cross country road trip from Tucson to D.C. in three days, rolled on the floor in stitches during a showing of “Twilight,” and spent a many afternoon at Starbucks on University Boulevard. When we didn’t feel like going nuts, we dined at Macaroni Grill or Olive Garden, as cooking simply wasn’t our thing. Our lives are different now, but we’re all around healthier. Her fiance is a stand-up guy and comes from a great family. Though I can’t say the same about myself, I shy away from idiots these days and have recently exercised some self-control and discipline to avoid toxic romantic relationships and trysts. My sleeping habits are slightly better than they were in college. We’re too old and tired to stay out until 4 a.m., but we didn’t have a whole lot going on sophomore year, and goofing off is only fun for so long.

Catching up with everyone was just what I needed, but I also appreciated having the chance to munch on real food. Here are some of the things I ate in D.C.:

Southern fried chicken
Nothing like enjoying a glass of Stella Artois and writing stories at Union Pub

As you may have gathered, I finished the day at Union Pub, which was shockingly empty for Cinco de Mayo. The few bar attendees were watching the Kentucky Derby, which was full of ladies in eye-catching hats. I had a mini-reunion with the tireless Andrew Staroska over drinks and ate some fired chicken tenders before heading back up to the northeast. Chatting with Andrew reminded me of the elements of D.C. I miss — running into people I know, everyone being interconnected, southern influence, excessive heat and humidity, small bars, cheap drink specials, etc. Of course, I could never move back to the land of suits and business buildings, so don’t expect me to live there again. Quick vacations are all I need, but I could definitely use more of them given the amount of friends I have in D.C.

Thankfully, my new roommate, Jen and I are tight. She brought me more Juicy Couture products on Friday!

This morning, we went out for Starbucks and brunch:


Summer is almost here, and that means I get to have fun again. Expect fun stories from my end, especially tomorrow: I get to see David Sedaris again! Any suggestions on what I should ask him? Last time we met, I professed my writer’s love for him and the encounter was rather awkward, so I want to give less of a starstruck schoolgirl vibe this time around. We’ll see if I have it in me to contain my excitement at being in his presence.