Have you ever been to this Smithsonian? The picture shows the atrium of the American Art Museum (also the Portrait Gallery). On the left is a fascinating pool of water, yet you can step right on/in it and you’re just standing on more of the floor. Little tiny jets push water up and over 3 such pools in the atrium. I may have been more intrigued with that than I was with everything in the museum itself.
This museum happened to be across the street from the hotel where we stayed on our second part of our D.C. trip. We were there for 3 nights and 2 days. Sabrina had almost back-to-back interviews with people, so I found some things to do that didn’t tax my foot too much. After walking around in this museum from top to bottom (3 floors, I think it was) I just happened to spot the water out in the atrium, through a window and went to investigate. I sat out in this atrium for about an hour reading my Kindle, basking in the cool air and listening to the tiny trickle of water. Children could play in
the water, they could run up and down the pools, shoes on or off. Each pool of water had but about 1/4 inch of water in it. Interesting feat of engineering.
We weren’t able to get into the Willard Hotel on our 2nd trip to D.C. as there was a huge international conference in town, so we stayed a few blocks away at a Kimpton. I was unimpressed. It must have once been an office building (old) as the hallways were about 10-feet wide. And the bathrooms were kind of add-ins to the rooms.
One of the days Sabrina asked if we could eat at a “Shake Shack.” I’d never heard of them. Although, as we walked by it the first day, there were probably 40 people in line outside the place. Really, I thought? The next day we were having a late lunch and the line was way down to do-able. I ordered a burger with bacon. Sabrina wanted to order a shake, and thought she had, but they gave her chocolate ice cream. She wasn’t about to wait in line again, so we shared that. The burger was good, I must admit. Exceptional? Well, I’m not a connoisseur, so I’m not sure. It was tasty, though.
Our last night we went to a fantastic restaurant – Zaytinya. It’s Greek, Turkish and Lebanese, and they serve everything tapas style. We went with Powell’s best friend Doug (the one who works for the Consumer Electronics Institute), his wife (the one who works for Homeland Security – I made sure to sit next to her so I could ask her lots of questions about her job – most of which she couldn’t answer), and their son. They frequent this restaurant, so we just let her order for all of us. It was amazing food. If I ever go back to D.C. this will be the first stop for dinner. It’s just a block from the museum above, which was across the street from our hotel, so it was really close and easy.
I can’t begin to tell you what we had – the only thing I really remember was a teeny, tiny little lamb-filled pasta – each little orb was about the size of a pencil eraser. Tender? Oh my yes. Full of flavor too. It’s not on the menu, but regulars know to ask. Everything we ate was terrific.
The next morning was our journey home: we got up at 4:15 am in order to leave the hotel at 4:45 to get to the Baltimore Airport in time for a 6:45 takeoff. We flew to San Francisco (remember, Powell upgraded all of us to first class, yippee!), then to Orange County. Arrived about 1pm west coast time. That evening we all went out to dinner with the extended family (Sabrina’s mom drove up to pick her up) and we talked and talked about the trip. It was great. All of it. Thanks to Powell who arranged it all. I was so glad to be home. My own bed felt wonderful. A few days after we got home I saw a podiatrist who gave me a shot of cortisone in my heel. It’s better. Not exactly fine – far from it – but at least I can go grocery shopping or take some similar kinds of walks each day and not end up in pain by afternoon. I’m taking Aleve every day and that helps too. My physical therapist tells me it could be as long as 10 months for it to heal. The dr. took x-rays and said it’s likely a torn plantar fascia or a very badly stretched one. No broken bones. I didn’t think so.
And since I haven’t talked about my grief process lately, I’ll just add that since I came home from this last trip, I’ve felt better. I’m more comfortable in my single-self. In my empty bed. In my quiet house. I don’t have to have music or the TV on anymore to feel okay. I’m still very, VERY busy, which is a good thing. The 5-month anniversary of Dave’s death was last week, and I just kept busy that day and tried not to think about it. I did talk to Dave’s ashes, in the box in the bedroom – I held the box and shed a few tears, but afterwards I was okay. I’m finally getting a better handle on all the records the attorney needs and am able to get them done (monthly) without too much difficulty now. Now that Quicken and I have come to an understanding.
My outdoor kitchen is still waiting for a couple of things to get finished, but it’s been too darned hot to entertain out there anyway. I am going to have a small get-together with a group of my girlfriends – most of them know one another. That’s in a couple of weeks. I’m going to make things that are already on my blog, but I’ll tell you about it when it happens. My sweet friend Nina, who has done my pedicures for years, is going to come and help me. She likes to cook and offered to come. That way I won’t over-tax my foot and she’ll do some serving and clean-up for me. I’ve never had anyone do that except at a couple of really important events years and years ago. Without Dave to help me do some of the set-up and dishes, cleaning the patio, setting tables, etc., entertaining a big group is overwhelming to me right now. So I’ll see how this works out!