Monday, July 05, 2010

CD in DC

This blog is a long-overdue recap of my extended weekend in Ellicott City, MD (a suburb of Washington DC) to visit my best friend Heather  her husband Jacob.  With everything going on in my life right now, it was decided that a few days away might just do the trick, and Jacob had some extra frequent flier miles, so off I went. Heather & I have known each other since the 7th grade when we were both cheerleaders at MLK. We have been through a lot in life and though our friendship has ebbed & flowed over the years, when we get together we never skip a beat.
It had been about 10 years since I'd flown on an airplane by myself, and I tend to have travel anxiety that gets worse as I get older, but aside from a few minor hiccups, I arrived in DC on Thursday morning to greet a smiling Heather.  As she weaved in & out of traffic expertly, I clung to my door handle, and realized it had been a while since I'd ridden with her.  This would come into play later on.

We grabbed lunch at Subway and brought it home to eat.  Home for Heather & Jacob is their new condo Chateau DePriest that I was getting to visit for the first time.  The home is classy & modern, decorated in muted shades, with pictures hanging up all over of the places she & Jacob have travelled.  Heather would describe her style as plain.  I would disagree.  Being a week day, Heather had some work she had to get done that afternoon, least of all was an hour long conversation with a client of hers who, no joke, believes Heather's an angel.  I would agree, though in a much more figurative sense of the word.

We hung out at the house that night- just the four of us- me, Heather, Jacob, & Betsy, Jacob's sister who's living with them this summer while working in DC for her internship.  Heather's house backs up to some woods, and she decidedly does not like the "creature" aspect of this locale.  They see deer all the time, have found a snake in the front yard, and just last week Heather called me in a panic about a massive spider downstairs, which we all made fun of her for her claims of how big it was, yet I no doubt looked for spider relatives every time I was down there too.  Keeping in the creature-friendly abode theme, I helped re-locate a small frog not once but twice from her deck, and am pretty sure I saw a badger run by in broad daylight.  We capped off the evening with some heaven in a cup from Coldstone Creamery.  Do you know the best part about Maryland this time of year?  No humidity!  That in itself was heaven as well, as we spent a lot of time this weekend sitting outside enjoying the pleasantly warm temps.

Friday was insanely busy for Heather and I.  She's a slave driver, really.  But then again I did volunteer my services.  To-do list in hand, we left the house at 9:30 Friday morning, and returned around 4, going to no less than 9 places.  Included in these stops was a trip to IKEA (oh, how I love this store), a walk with Heather's friend Laura, but more importantly, Laura's infamous dog Boomer, and the best part, lunch with Ari!
I was so blessed to have lunch with 2 of my favorite people on earth  (Conley, we certainly missed you). Ari was on her way through town to meet up with Bart, so an hour or two was all we got, but it was totally worth it.  We ate at this little sandwich shop where a man got up to sing & play guitar to provide lunchtime patrons with entertainment.  Looks like we're not in Nashville anymore, Toto I said to the girls.  The musician was not great to say the least, so we opted to move to an outdoor table to finish our conversation and drinks.  I was sad to have such a short visit with Ari, but she had places to be, and we had more errands to run.

Saturday night was the unofficial housewarming party to break in the new Chateau DePriest.  We spent all day cleaning and getting ready for the shindig that ended up being about 35 people.  I was excited to finally meet work and church friends that she's been talking about for several years now.  No one ever looks how you picture them to look!  I bonded with several people over lamenting Heather's poor driving skills.  Heather defended herself saying she's just an efficient driver.  Yes, her friend Ken said, if by efficient you mean driving in such a way that your life is shorter.  The party was a success, with plenty of food and drinks to go around for the 35 or so guests.
I got too busy eating and mingling, so this is the only picture I have from the party- a sampling of the yummy food.

Sunday we went to their church- a very modern approach to what most would call non-denominational.  I mean, their church building looks like a barn, and it sits on several acres of land, and the church members take turns working the farm on their land!  Heather mentioned one of the things that they do with the fruits and vegetables that they grow is to give it away to the homeless.  It's a very Shane Claiborne kind of concept, and I like it!  Here's our one group photo of the 4 of us, taken after church:
I tried my hand at Rockband that afternoon while Heather took Jacob to the airport for his business trip, and then we three enjoyed some girl time that afternoon and a yummy dinner at Chipoltle.  I was leaving that evening, or so I thought.  It wasn't that I was anxious to leave Heather, since our visits are so few and far between, but I was ready to get home and see Bradley.  Unfortunately, due to some heinous lines at security at the airport, and a few miscalculations on our part, plus a quick detour so I could snap this picture (BHS alums in particular will realize why this was so funny):
And voila!  I was spending an extra night in DC!  By the time Heather came to pick me up from the airport (again) it was around 10 pm, and after taking a wrong turn on the way home and laughing hysterically, we were in bed by midnight, only to be up Monday morning at 5:30am.  We were both so stinking tired that everything was funny that night.  Thank you to Heather, Jacob, and Betsy for allowing me to come and visit you all at Chateau DePriest.  I love you tremendously and can't wait for the next visit.

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