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08: On New Places

September 4, 2011

So I’m here.

Really, actually, here. In DC.

If you really want to get technical, I’m in Arlington, Virginia – a stone’s throw from the Iwo Jima memorial and just across the river from DC itself. I’ve officially moved into the Virginian Suites, an extended stay hotel with a fully furnished room, enormous television, and a full kitchen.

416 Arlington

Check out this sexy room

Because I’m student ambassador and we have an odd number of girls, I got a single room. This means no roommate, which is…comfortable. It means I don’t have to worry about bothering anyone with my addiction to NPR and British spy dramas.

Even though I’ve only been here for a couple days, I feel like I’ve done so much. By the time I reach the end of the day, morning seems like it was years ago. I’ve been on boat tours and bus tours – to Spartan bars and national monuments. So far, it’s been an amazing (read: exhausting) experience.

Thursday, our first full day, we met our professors in the morning, and then went on a several hour long bus tour, where our driver Ray gave us a cynical and often politically charged history of the last sixty years in DC. This was followed by me and my friend Alex setting up a command center in my room where we planned our trip for the scavenger hunt the next day.

We over-thought it.

The original plan involved a complex path with backtracking and zigzagging in order to get photos of all the internship

Winners here

High five!

sites, national monuments, and other things that were on our required list.  But after the first internship site, we lost interest and quickly grew tired of walking. I began wishing that we’d just been allowed to roam around the city on our own time instead of stressing of where each historically significant place was. Needless to say, we lost that scavenger hunt.

Afterwards, however, we did get to go on a boat tour to Alexandria, an overly-expensive but very pretty part of Virginia. I got a cupcake and drank beer at a place called Bilbo Baggins. This was followed by a late-night excursion to Adams-Morgan street, a straight mile of bars occupied by college-age students.

So that was fun.

And now I’m back in my room, full of hotel breakfast and excited to watch the next episode of Mad Men. There are a bunch of girls here from the University of Madison Wisconsin doing a similar type of study away program; we’re planning on going shopping together in a couple hours. I should stop rambling and actually post this entry before I put it off again.

Love you! Til next week.

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