Why I Love DC: Samantha

Photo courtesy of
‘(heart) D.C.’
courtesy of ‘rockcreek’

I can’t tell you why I picked DC.  People ask me this question all the time when they first meet me and I just don’t have a ‘real’ answer.  Was it because of the political scene? Nope, I was about to enter a Masters program for Interior Design.  Was it because I had family here?  That would be another negative.  I got it; it must be because of the weather, right?  I am glad to say once again that weather was not the reason why I wanted to move to DC (perhaps on some subliminal level I foresaw the impending snow storms of 2009/2010).  The best answer that I can offer you is that I believe it was just a feeling that brought me here – a feeling that has since developed into a full-blown love affair.

That’s right everyone — I totally, utterly, completely, whole-heartedly love DC.  

Photo courtesy of
‘NGA Color Test’
courtesy of ‘Kevin H.’

I love how on any given Saturday morning I can take a yoga class at Flow and run into a childhood schoolmate.  I love how I met one of my closest friends via DC Craig’s List (no, it was not a missed connection – just a wildly successful apartment hunt).  I love how a 14-hour AutoCAD session never seemed quite as bad when I was having a Chai Latte with a shot of espresso at Tryst.  I love how no matter what time of the day I go to Whole Foods on P there will always be some overly-friendly person fundraising outside ( I am such a sucker for a good cause).

I love how my dog always has a place to play, whether it is at the dog park on S and 17th or the one at 10th and Rhode Island (she is the big Newfoundland, very friendly). I love how on a Friday night I can see Adam Tensta perform on the rooftop at House of Sweden and subsequently enjoy the building’s award-winning modern architecture. I love how Chinatown hardly has any Chinese food restaurants.  I love how we have five sports teams (yes, I am counting soccer).

Photo courtesy of
‘Eastern Market’
courtesy of ‘Tony DeFilippo’

I love how confusing L’Enfant’s circles are for out-of-towners (okay, sometimes I still get confused, I shamefully admit it).  I love how Marvin has one of the best brunches in the city, yet, there is hardly ever a wait for a table.  I love how I can be inspired by the architecture of the East Gallery (I.M. Pei is one of my favorites) and then get lost for a bit amongst the Rothkos before heading over to the West Gallery where I can get lost for a bit more with a still by Pieter Claesz.  I love how I can see the Yeah Yeah Yeahs at the 9:30 Club and never have to worry about getting tickets at the same exact time as my friends in order to enjoy the concert with them.

I love how you can go the Kennedy Center and in the same day see a play, a ballet, and a symphony.  I love how much I dislike Halloween in Georgetown though ultimately end up going there every year at some point anyway.  I love how ridiculous it is that taxi drivers charge an extra $1.50 for each additional passenger (come on, it’s even free in NYC).  I love how Summer brings old movies and picnics on the mall with Screen on the Green.

I love how relaxing it is to browse through vintage tie-dye slips and purchase fresh pasta on a Sunday morning at Eastern Market. I love how proud I am about the Metro system even though I can easily count the number of times I have utilized it in the past three years. I love how each time I take visitors to see the Lincoln Memorial, no matter what the frequency, the view from the steps always takes my breath away. I love how on a casual night at a new neighborhood bar (Churchkey) you can end up meeting someone that could change your life forever.

I love how while I am writing this I have a huge smile across my face.

I guess you can say we are meant to be.

Samantha can often be found daydreaming by the Rothkos of the East Gallery, sketching store facades along 14th, and snapping photos with her vintage polaroid at 9:30 club concerts. Since moving to DC in 2007 to get an MFA in Interior Design, her eyes can’t seem to be peeled away from the beautiful things in this city. Send any visual art, architecture, or design related news her way via Samantha (at) WeLoveDC.com

13 thoughts on “Why I Love DC: Samantha

  1. Thanks for sharing, Sam! I’m glad to hear your intuition about DC has proven correct beyond a doubt.

    As much as one already loves DC, it only gets better when a bar like ChurchKey opens two blocks away… :)

  2. I adore this piece. I just moved here last week after years of trying to hatch a plan to get to this city that checked off all the boxes on my list. It’s fun recognizing my newcomer perspective right now and hoping that in a few years, I feel just like you do. Thanks for sharing!

  3. PS: I just found your blog and realized we have a friend in common – Amy of ABCD Designs! She designed my wedding invitations and is fantastic in every way.

  4. I’ve had a soft spot in my heart for DC since my 6th grade field trip. I love that there is so much diversity and so many little shops that can thrive without many people knowing about them – like Marvin’s for example.

    I’m totally hitting that up soon.

    Thanks Samantha!

  5. This is so sweet and well-written, Samantha! It reminds me of how I felt when I moved here years ago. So glad to have you on our team. :)

    And wow, you have a Newfoundland?

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  7. Congratulations Samantha, you’ve reminded me of all the reasons I love DC and of all the places I have yet to explore.

  8. I also love Washington D.C. which most people find odd since they rarely have anything nice to say about it. I grew up in Northern Virginia and my dad worked for the EPA and the State Department and my mom taught at a public school right next to the Pentagon. So I grew up commuting back and forth with my dad and mom to work every morning and every night growing up. I was always amazed by the architecture, the majestic monuments that are seemingly everywhere and the random odd and interesting historical tidbits that oozed intrigue that seemed to be sprikled throughout the city. I also loved going to the lighting of the National Christmas tree every year and taking random tours of the White House (when it was still legal pre-9/11…). I also loved being surrounded by water and even getting lost and discovering new things and places in the intentionally confusing streets of DC (done so in order to confuse invading armies…). And I loved all the parades like the biker rallies and countless political protests. I also loved simply walking around DC in the Spring and Summer with the carefully layed out green fields, the trees planted every ten yards along the roads and all the people simply walking around from all over the world enjoying the sights of our city. I also loved being literally the center of the world as far as geopolitics goes. I loved watching a convoy of official looking stately motorcades drive by with flags from all over the world flapping in the wind and wondering who was inside them (was it the president of Japan?) I also loved the lively college town and the numerous night clubs. I liked getting to know world famous politicians on a personal level as they worked out in your local gym or sent their kids to your school. I liked touring the same world famous momuments over and over again and never getting tired of it. I liked visiting the countless museams and art galleries. And I especially liked being a part of history as it happened. But most importantly I love the memories. Like taking dates to the Jefferson memorial when the cherry blossoms (a gift from Japan pre-WWII) were in bloom and their white petals were falling which made it look like the entire ground was covered in snow – a guranteed “score” every time. However now that I’m getting older the politics is starting to wear on me and now I yearn for a more rural and simple setting to settle down in.

  9. Wow, this is a blog totally dedicated to loving DC? I wish I would have found this last year. I just found it through a friend of a friend’s google reader…and I’m sorry to say that I lived in DC last year but hated it so much I moved to Baltimore. I felt like my soul was getting sucked away among all the politics and networking and “what do you do?”s and perky fake smiling conversations, the list goes on but I don’t want to be a downer on this board. I just wished I would have found a community like this last year, to help me find and appreciate some of the cool local businesses I didn’t end up finding, or something. Yoga was great, and I would have completely gone crazy there without it, but here in Baltimore it’s only $6 for an hour and a half of quality (not that DC yoga wasn’t quality, but it certainly wasn’t $6 for that length of time). Maybe if I would have liked my job some more my world last year wouldn’t have been so cluttered, but it’s pretty hard to fight through the transient career snobs and find people like ya’ll…another thing I didn’t like about DC was having to attend so rigorously to my online “social” life (in a way that I’ve never had to anywhere else I’ve ever lived) just to have some fun and friends. Anyway, thanks for making the city a better place, and I owe the many good times I did have there to people like you guys…but there needs to be more of a presence of a community with this feel in the real Washington, DC.

  10. I love this blog! I’m from town out west and this summer I’m leaving my home town to live in DC for two months. Reading this blog as well as the other “We love DC” blogs has made me so excited. I’m seriously taking notes from all of these and using them in my vist! THANKS!