DC is always a good idea. At the end of every major film / tv project I’ve worked on while in New York, to unwind and leave the stress behind me I hop on a bus or train and head south to Washington, DC. I’m lucky to have childhood and college friends who live in DC and when I step off at Union Station, I know I’m about to have a grand, relaxing time!
This time around, I stayed with the fabulous Ingrid, one of my best friends from my middle school days! The night I came into town, in the wee hours of the morning, we stayed up even later swapping work tales, watching the lost awesomeness of GCB and I even learned about a local hero: Mr. Outlaw.
Saturday morning came and Ingrid and I woke early and trekked to the local grocery store to procure food and ingredients for my stay. We sipped on Starbucks as we roamed the aisles, contemplating life as a Dallas house wife, and stocked up on fruits and cheeses for a picnic later on the lawn of the Capitol building.
Later that morning we met up with Callie at Eastern Market and took turns sampling eclectic feats like apple flavored barbecue and admired handcrafted mirrors and wooden tables. We kept going back to the fruit stands, helping ourselves to thirds, and by the end of the Eastern Market tour we were ready for our picnic!
The weather was absolutely perfect. We walked from Eastern Market to the Capitol and found ourselves in the lush grass beneath a large shade tree. Ingrid expertly cut up apples, strawberries, a loaf of bread and various cheeses for our trio to enjoy and we basked in the sunlight and balmy 70-degree weather overlooking the beginnings of the National Mall.
That evening, Callie and her husband Jerry hosted a small dinner party with mutual friends. It was good seeing everyone again from college. Jerry made Kir’s – a delicious french cocktail – and dinner consisted of caper topped pizzettes, a corn chutney, trout, and green salad. For dessert I quickly whipped up a pound cake and Jerry made Cafe Bonbom for the group! While everything else was a success, the Cafe Bonbom was not a hit. But that didn’t matter. In the end, after we had eaten, the fact that we all curled up in various sofas and overstuffed chairs and chatted endlessly for hours was a true sign that friends like these are well appreciated.
Sunday, I did a thing I rarely do and went to church! Ingrid brought me to St. Peter’s and I was happy to learn that JPII had been canonized the night before! Callie joined us for brunch back at Ingrid’s and we enjoyed our fair share of mimosas, waffles, strawberries, eggs and bacon!
To burn off some of our delicious calories, we headed to Lincoln Park after brunch to play a game of Boules. It was tough avoiding the dog poop, I lost a ball a few times, having to chase after it, and even a set of little boys stomped into our playing field to take a look at what we were doing. Callie and I tried our hand at synchronized cartwheels (success!) and I was surprised that I was still able to do a one handed one!
Our play time in the park quickly came to an end with Callie winning the game. We hiked back to Ingrid’s and then made our way to the National Gallery to attend a free concert featuring Eliot Fisk and Paco Pena with the rest of the dinner gang from the night before. While the seating was quite the game of musical chairs, we all enjoyed ourselves in the end despite the various plants and foliage blocking our views.
At the end of the concert it was time to say our goodbyes. While Callie, Jerry, Selena and Will hopped into the beloved Saab convertible, Ingrid and I decided to properly stretch our legs and visit my favorite man on the National Mall: Lincoln.
I don’t know what draws me to the Lincoln Memorial, but it’s always a joy to bask in its grandeur. I never leave DC without paying a vista to good ‘ol Abe.
Ingrid and I ended our weekend adventure at Matchbox Pizza in Barracks Row and then returned to her row house to finish watching more GCB.
The next morning I returned to Union Station and boarded the train back to New York with the promise of Ingrid to visit soon.
The weekend was perfect and I had no problem reminding myself that DC is always a good idea.