"Be soft. Do not let the world make you hard. Do not let the pain make you hate. Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness. Take pride that even though the rest of the world may disagree, you still believe it to be a beautiful place."
-- Unknown
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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Alive and well in D.C.

I just got out of my first day of conferences and thought I'd take a minute to update y'all on my trip, thus far.

My flight (that was supposed to leave at noon on Monday) was delayed (joy). Instead of taking off on time, I didn't actually get air-born until sometime after 2:00, which made it equally joyful to make my connecting flight in Atlanta. I should have had an hour and twenty minutes to leisurely make my way to my gate. Instead, I had 10 minutes to get from concourse D to concourse A - not an easy task. Of course, by the time I got to my gate, that flight had ALSO been delayed. They apparently decided on that little detail while I was running on the moving walkways.

I landed in D.C. around 6:30 and took an exciting shuttle ride to my hotel. I got out of the van grateful to be alive after several near-death experiences and two near-collisions with pedestrians. After sorting out some issues with my check-in, I happily ordered room-service and sprawled out on my "heavenly bed" (that's the actual trademarked name - and not an exaggeration. It's amazing.) I ate a bellyful of of seafood pasta and the biggest slice of cheesecake I'd ever seen, then drifted into a deep, wonderful sleep.

Yesterday, I proudly made my way around the city by myself. I caught the Metro and rode to the National Mall, where I spent most of the day touring around the museums. I found that it's actually really relaxing to be able to do things on your own time and see exactly what you want to see, without having to wait around for someone else. Not a bad deal. Later in the afternoon, I headed to Arlington National Cemetery and spent some time reflecting on the men and women who have given their lives for our freedom. Seeing the sheer number of headstones is both visually breathtaking and emotionally overwhelming.

I got back to the hotel just in time for our welcome reception last night. I met a lot of interesting people from all over the country. I'm really looking forward to getting to know them better over the remainder of the week. Some of us tried to go to a local Irish pub last night to celebrate St. Patty's day, but after seeing a ridiculously long line wrap around the building, we decided to grab a bite to eat somewhere else and call it a night.

Today, I heard several speakers and learned a lot about my role as a communicator. I think it's excellent that they offer things like this for those of us who are new to the industry. Not only are we learning valuable information, we're building a wonderful network of peers.

Well, it's time to wrap this up. I'm about to head out for a tour of the FDR Memorial and dinner at Union Station. Stay tuned for more updates...

Hope y'all are having a fantastic week!

Oh... check out my new friend:


Ha!! The squirrels here are very.... friendly. I was sitting on the bench eating a cookie and apparently this guy wanted a bite.

10 comments:

Kitten said...

I love DC. I was there last July. I had one free day when I was there to putz around the city, and I wandered around the Mall and the Tidal Basin for a few hours.

The FDR Memorial is beautiful and awe-inspiring. Let us know how you liked it!

Andy said...

I love hotel beds. There's something about them that makes me want to sleep for hours and hours. As long as I don't think about who has slept in them in the past, that is...

Diane said...

Glad it's going well! I hope I get one of those Heavenly beds!! Hey, email me and tell me what Metro stop you took from the hotel. I might just park and ride, rather than drive all the way to the hotel on Friday!

Lacey said...

I want to go to DC more than anything, there is so much to see there! And that little squirrel is absoulutely adorable. I want one! <3

Missy said...

DO NOT TRUST THE SQUIRRELS! They are agents of satan!
So pround of you acting all adult in big DC!
Keep us posted!

Jared said...

I road tripped out to DC during spring break in college. Same time of year. Make sure to go visit the Jefferson Memorial and Abe. There's a cool little gift shop off to the right of Abe you should check out. I also went to Arlington and it was one of my favorite stops on the trip. There were some cool views of the skyline.

Jenners said...

Sounds like a busy, productive and fun time! And I'm guessing you are going to see Diane on this trip! YAY!

Jen L. said...

Cute squirrel...watch your cookies!
Glad you got to explore and are having fun at your conference. I do love me a good hotel bed! Enjoy the rest of your week!

Sally's World said...

glad its going well, never been to DC, but i will one day.

p.s. the sqirrel just wants your food...no such thing as a freindly squirrel...

Greener Bangalore said...

hahah so cute .....just love the way it stares.....hehe..thx for sharing.....