DC

Since rain was in the forecast for the area and I was in the city anyway I decided to do my sightseeing until my hair gets wet, what limited hair I do have. So determined to take advantage of a break in the gloomy weather plaguing the city during the week. I set out for the city. At the Whitehouse gate it dawned on me as I stood among the many international tourists that I was a tourist again myself. I had neglected the treasures in my own back yard for some time and today is a long overdue how are you to a friend I had past silently in the hall.  The monuments I pasted on the way to work or on weekend visits to bars  held no grudges. They held silent like secrets kept in quiet triumph. They have nothing but time they will stand tall long after I am gone. My time here is short. My illusions of having all the time in the world didn’t bother them they had a bird’s eye view of time ticking away. My neglect was one of proximity mixed with perceived permanence and good old fashioned  procrastination. Opportunities and relationships are far less forgiving. I watched couples, families, and buses of kids on field trips from Illinois to India they came to enjoy a day in the backyard of my childhood.  I spotted the carousel I once played on as a kid still there like a bookmark in my youth.  We both had changed. There was an actor from California in Office no one thought could be present then. Now a president no one thought could be possible. The redskins were superbowl contenders with the over the hill gang and the hogs. Now they are favorites to hog the most overpaid free agents and end up n the cellar. I missed redskins games, I missed the DMV, and I missed family. Pausing for monuments and photo ops I spent much of the early day reminiscing not of the city but of home and how much more difficult leaving again will be.  I was fortunate enough to run into a German tourist. She looked as if she was trying to absorb the city all at once.  She was also solo. As we chatted she told me she had been to America before as an exchange student. Her dream dashed when it was revealed to her she wasn’t going to New York or DC but Santa Fe NM. I told her about my trip she advised me to skip Santa Fe. We continued our conversation as we strolled through the national mall a more accurate depiction would be she walked I limped.   She was nice enough not to complain about my frequent stops to nurse my ankle. I saw curious as to why she kept asking for robin Williams. The Smithsonian came into view and I pointed it out her face lit up and the light bulb in my head turned on, of course Robin Williams. It turned out to be a highlight of my tour. To her dismay king tut wasn’t there either but we did see a guy who looked like ben stiller. We resigned ourselves to a full day. A meal in Adams Morgan were I had my first falafel at Amsterdam. We had a laugh or two about dc being closed for renovations as the reflecting pool is being renovated. Thank you goes out to Jantje for pulling me out of my own head for awhile.

 

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