“Snow Shovel 0, Snow & Ice 1.”
“Just die already winter. I hate you. Die.”
“Winter wonderland, we good. You can go now.”
These are the updates I woke up to in February from friends in DC. As of January, I live in Los Angeles, and it was surreal to read people’s misery – to know how cold the winters can feel on the National Mall – and still miss the place. So. Damn. Much.
When my husband and I first moved to DC we didn’t know if it was temporary or permanent, but we decided to invest everything we had in the community there, just to see what happened. We weren’t expecting anything.
Scratch that – we were expecting lobbyists as our only drinking buddies. Dismal.
We left DC five years later, so I guess it was temporary. But by the time we left, our drinking buddies were actors and graphic designers and animators and librarians and, ok, a few lobbyists.
Truth is, we left right when we wanted to stay the most, kicking and screaming. Even reading those icy posts from friends, I had to hold my hands back from typing “cheap flights to DCA.”
Here are three things I miss terribly about DC:
1) Having a conversation with anyone about anything.
The city is full of experts, educated at every level and on every subject. People settle in the nation’s capital not to become bureaucrats, but because they care about stuff. That passion and intelligence is unlike anywhere else in the country, and it’s something I took for granted.
2) Getting around.
In DC, you can go outside and walk, bike, or ride wherever you need to go. Give yourself extra time for Metro, and demand better from it, sure; but never forget you have it, and other options, when so many cities don’t.
3) The village and the metropolis.
In DC, your shows go to Broadway and your Fringe is fringe. You can spend a day for free at one of the best art museums in the world right before joining the regulars at that dive bar. You know everyone and still have so many more people to meet. You can get lost in the crowd or run for president.
DC attracts some of the most creative go-getters in the world, and they still smile at each other and know how to share a proper whiskey. It’s the only place I’ve ever lived where people are as kind as they are educated, as empathetic as they are intense. DC deserves the naysayers’ gratitude, the country’s investment, and the right to vote.
So yeah, I miss it all.
I miss it all except the weather.