This weekend I left the warm embrace of Astoria to take a 4 and a half hour bus ride to our nation's capitol. Or rather my nation's capitol, as I don't presume to know the nationalities of all of my esteemed readers. At any rate, there was a database conference in D.C. this weekend. Normally, the frequent occurrence of database conferences affects me not at all; however, my California-based sister was attending this particular database conference, and I used this rare chance that she was on the same coast to journey down to see her. She was kind enough to let me and a mutual friend of ours crash at her hotel (the large, many-windowed Gaylord National) with she and her boss. In fact, she even gave up her bed to us and slept in a nest of towels and pillows on the floor. I realize this makes me sound like the kind of person who is too cheap to spring for her own hotel room and will dislodge the person who's name is actually on the reservation from her own hotel bed. In my defense, she offered. Even after I lost the coin toss.
You'd think a place this swanky could handle a simple request for a roll-away bed. And also wouldn't respond to a request for extra pillows with the delivery of a half dozen towels.
It was on the first night that I realized that while I'd scrupulously remembered to pack my camera, I had yet again forgotten to pack my memory card. That's right, the above picture was in fact taken by the good people in marketing at the Gaylord National. So sadly, there will be only one picture from this trip, that was captured with the usual grainy realism on my cell phone. (And frankly, I probably could have gotten a better picture online). Before I unveil that gem though, here's a list of pictures you will not be seeing: my sister pantomiming swinging a baseball bat because there was a fake home plate in the sports bar of the hotel, the giant plate of nachos at said sports bar, the lovely walk across the bridge to Georgetown, an environmental conscience-less squirrel trashcan diving and then littering its findings in front of the Lincoln Memorial, a potential duck brawl on the reflecting pool, a sign with a very odd spelling of "teepee" (is it just me or should it not be "tipi"?) in front of the Museum of the American Indian (which, and this is neither here nor there, I hear from multiple sources, has the best museum cafeteria on the Mall), a close-up of a "signature martini" from Vapianos that is garnished with five gummy bears, some beautiful orchids at the Botanical Gardens, and a close-up of my uncle's cat.
Okay, enough of that talk of what might have been. Here's the picture I did get:
Pretty nice, huh? Something about the statue just makes me want to climb up on his presidential knee and tell him all my troubles. Naturally, there is a small chain and a tall marble pedestal to keep you from doing just that.
So this post is extremely scattered and really tells you nothing about my trip to DC. Suffice is to say, I had a perfectly lovely (albeit far too short) trip, and it was wonderful to see my sister, my friend Michelle (a D.C. local who knows all the best places to get a gummy bear martini), my aspiring lawyer friend Aaron, and my uncle and aunt. Thanks to all those who gave me beds this weekend and especially to those who gave me their only non-floor-nest bed.