my heart won't stay entirely in this ribcaging

take it from me

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she has arrived...
I'm in DC! (Sort of). By sort of, I mean Arlington, VA--the closest Virginia suburb to our nation's capital. I flew out of Seattle on Wednesday morning and stayed with my aunt and uncle there for a few days, as well as visited Eric in his new suite at Hopkins, and cooked dinner with him and his friends. This morning, I got up fairly early (considering that jet-lag kept me up pretty late) and my aunt and grandma drove me to Arlington (about an hour away).

I'm staying with old family friends of my dad's, who are incredibly welcoming. I have my own room with a queen bed, full closet, dresser...also my own bathroom. Not bad at all, considering most places I looked at on Craigslist offered much less AND I would have had to pay rent. This lovely family is letting me stay with them for the summer free of charge--they won't even take money for groceries!

Within a few minutes of unpacking, my friend Emma (also a Tufts student and fellow American history/politics junkie) called. She and Evan (another Tufts friend) are both interning in DC this summer and were meeting this afternoon to walk through the Smithsonian. She wondered if I wanted to go. Did I want to go???? This to the girl who reads history books for FUN, geekily remarked that Obama's inaugural address had eerie similarities to Richard III's "Now is the winter of our discontent...", who is getting ready to write an 80-100 p thesis on nothing BUT American history. Yes, I wanted to go. So my host dad (I don't know what else to call him...) very generously drove me to the Metro stop (the DC area subway) and I bought a SmartCard and was getting off at the Smithsonian stop in under 20 minutes. Not bad at all.

And then I walked up out of the metro stop, and I was on the National Mall, and the Lincoln Memorial was on one end, and the Capitol, and the Washington monument, and the WW2 memorial, and the Vietnam memorial, and I could see the White House, and it was all RIGHT THERE. I'll be perfectly honest--I felt a little bit like you do when you first walk in the gates of Disneyland: completely overwhelmed, SO excited, and aware that you're now seeing in person what you've only seen before in pictures. So I gawked, strolled, and probably unknowingly walked through several people's snapshots before getting over to the Smithsonian Museum of American History, which was pretty fantastic.

Among other things, we saw: Judy Garland's ruby-red slippers, Lincoln's stovepipe hat, a draft of Ike's inaugural address, and the kitchen which served as Julia Child's television set. I was in American history-politics heaven...

We left the museum and walked all over, taking tons of pictures and commenting on how crowded the Mall was. Now, I am going to expose my own ignorance, but I'm hoping that since I didn't know this, other people might not have either. Until about six months ago, I thought that the term "National Mall" referred to an actual SHOPPING mall. Hahahah. It doesn't.

FInally, I said good-bye to Evan and Emma and after only a slight Metro snafu, found my way to 18th St NW, walked several blocks, and found my office building, where I will start work on Monday. I have very little idea what I'm going to be doing. All I have been told is that I'll be assisting with legal research, writing op-eds to go in the newsletter, and attending and reporting on congressional briefings. So, we'll see.

Now comes the major task for tonight. Ironing. Basically every single piece of clothing I need to wear to work requires an ironing. Good lord, but I am going to be an ironing pro by the end of the summer. Oh well. I will take the ironing in stride, as long as I get to walk around DC and see such amazing things...

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I LOVE IRONING. want to hire me as your summer assistant and i can live with you and do all of your ironing? yessss. i miss you.

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