Wednesday, August 21, 2013

On Washington, DC

The last couple of times I've moved, it was bittersweet at first. I liked the place I moved from, and I was never totally sold on the new place.

And then I gave the new place a chance and find out that, hey, it's not so bad, and there are some things about the new place that I really like.

Moving to DC was no exception. DC is finally growing on me.

1. The Smithsonian Museums. Yes, museums. The Smithsonian is many museums, not just one. Free museums. My favorite is the Museum of American History. And the National Gallery of Art and Sculpture Garden, although that's not a Smithsonian. Still free, though.

2. The arts scene. I have already been to four concerts at The Fillmore and have seen a documentary at the A.F.I. Silver Spring (Sound City ... highly recommend it if you like Dave Grohl, or if you like rock music). These venues are across the street from each other. The Fillmore is not too big and not too small. Kinda like the way I like my marathons.

3. Rock Creek Park. You'd never guess you were in the middle of a city. It is quiet and peaceful. Some of the roads are closed to traffic on the weekends so people can walk, run, or cycle. I did all of my longest long runs in preparation for Boston in Rock Creek.

4. The National Mall. The fastest, cheapest, and most fun way to see the monuments is to run. If you have far enough to run, you can visit the U.S. Capitol, the Washington Monument, the White House, the Jefferson Memorial, the Lincoln Memorial, and even Virginia if you want to. All on the same run. See? I did this back in 2011.

5. Decent public transportation. I pretty much do not take the Metro on the weekends because of trackwork and closed stations. It's not pleasant when there are delays. And lemme tell you about the time I got stuck on a disabled train. However, the Metro is way better than the alternative. Drive? No thank you. Been there, done that, and have no interest in doing it again. Going to Boston a few months ago made me appreciate Metro more. I get my commute time back to do stuff. Read. Play with my phone. Listen to music. Nothing. My car was acting fritzy, so I didn't drive for over 3 months. And I didn't need to.

6. My job. There are some days when I feel like I haven't worked because I like what I do that much. Yes, there are challenges and it's not all puppies and rainbows. But it is interesting, meaningful work with a limitless supply of questions to address. I get to use my data skills and research skills on a daily basis. I couldn't ask for anything better.

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