Saturday, June 24, 2006

Oh D.C.--How I Will Miss You

This is a special week for me, because it's my last week working with the theatre. After four years and three months I'm finally moving on. I finish my current job on Sunday by helping out with a massive fundraising performance (more on that in a later post). I start right away on Monday with a circulation job at a public library five minutes from where I live in Fairfax County. This is all good stuff...aside from getting professional experience in my new chosen field working there will cut my tuition costs in half and make me eligible for some small scholarships next year. I'm more than ready to move on, but even still there are things I'll miss. Wacky co-workers. The places to eat. On and on and on.

But more than anything, I'll miss D.C. itself. For almost a decade now, ever since I finished undergrad, I've worked in D.C. It's not like I'll stop coming downtown just because I don't work there anymore (see, I'm already saying there not here). I'll still be taking classes and doing research at Catholic University and I'll still come down to museum hop or catch a reading from time to time. But this job move will change how I feel. Even though I haven't lived in D.C. for several years I still felt like it was my city. I won't feel that way anymore. Now whenever I come downtown I'll feel like a vistor, a (dare I say it) tourist.

So before I let out a brief man-cry here are the top ten things I'll miss most about D.C. (in no particular order)

The mystery of the black squirrels.

Reading on the metro (yes, really).

Nutty Mr. Chow in the Lincoln House Bar and Deli, who without fail always tries to sell me a lottery ticket when all I ever want from there is a dirt-cheap cup of coffee.

The gorgeous view of the monuments you get from the metro train when you cross the Potomac River on the Yellow Line.

The cute redhead I always exchange smiles with on F Street on my way to and from work. She's more reliable than a digital watch---when I see her I know I'm on time. Even though we've never spoken I should probably stop her today and tell her I'm quitting. Otherwise she might think I'm dead.

Popping into the National Gallery of Art or the Hirshhorn on my lunch hour, just because I can.

Laughing at the tourists and all the crazy, everyday things they photograph.

The odd old man I see in Metro Center all the time in sunglasses, a full black suit, poorly dyed hair and moustache, and flip-flops. And did I mention he paints his toenails black? At least I hope they're painted.

Indie bookstores like Chapters and Ollsons.

Bingo Bob, the homeless man in the neighborhood who panhandles for money so he can buy books, read them and then pass them out to other homeless people.

Leaving work, looking to my left down Pennsylvania Avenue and seeing the Capital Building ten blocks away. It never ceases to take my breath away when I stop and actually look...especially when the sunset transforms the dome's color to that of a neon blood orange.



Sandra said...

Aw...but you'll still come into town for poetry readings, right?

Maybe we can convince the F Street redhead to make guest appearances seated on the other side of the audience.

It's not the Tysons Pimmit Regional Library, is it? When I was growing up in Vienna, because of me they used to have to look up the rules on the maximum number of books children under 12 could check out (for the record, it is 50--though I tried to argue that all the Encyclopedia Brown volumes should count as one).

Jen said...

That's quite a list! Good luck with your new job; at the very, least you'll have new memories to look forward to.

Hebdomeros said...


Of course I'll still come to readings! There are some out here in the burbs, but not so many as there are downtown. I hope to expand to hitting some in Balitmore as well.

No, I'm not at the the Vienna branch. It's the Pohick Branch in Burke. And I found out yesterday, the rule of only 50 books at at a time still holds true----with some exceptions from time to time. Librarians can be such book Nazis!


Thanks for the kind words---now that I've left the theatre I can start writing about it. I've pretty much exhausted my supply of stories based on my museum experiences, so it's a good time.