Sunday, October 13, 2013

How to have fun in Washington during the shutdown

Weeks ago, my brother and sister and I planned a sibling reunion in Washington, DC.  It's unfortunate that our weekend coincided with the government shutdown, but we had a great time anyway.  My brother and sister had Thursday and Friday together and had some cool adventures of their own in the private sector.  Ian and I joined them on Saturday.

We went to a Turkish restaurant for brunch and then toured the Anderson House, which once belonged to Larz Anderson and is now the headquarters of the Society of Cincinnati.  Our eccentric guide did not stick to the script for our tour, which made it all the more fun. 

Olmsted Room at the Anderson House

I loved this peaceful pool.

Random people.
I half expected the White House to be wrapped in a tarp.

Ian and me and my brother & sister 

The last time the three of us were in DC together was 1980, when our parents drove us down for an educational Easter vacation trip.  John, Margaret, and I were ages 10, 7, and 11, respectively, and we each packed one treasured possession.  Margaret's was a real izod "alligator" shirt,  John's was a straw cowboy hat, and mine was a Papagallo purse, which had been in my Easter basket that year.  In every single photograph, the shirt, the hat, and the purse are present.  Margaret coveted my purse and would beg to be allowed to hold it and I would say charming, sisterly things like, "You can hold it for five minutes if you promise not to talk to me for the rest of the day." The pictures, alas, are at my father's house, probably as slides.

Papagallo purse.  I had that exact navy cover,
 and the yellow one, and also a wool plaid one.

It really was the educational trip that my parents intended.  We went over every inch of every Smithsonian museum and toured all the monuments, the Capitol building the Supreme Court, and the Library of Congress (which I pretended was my own house).  The only thing we didn't tour was the White House (too crowded). The Washington metro was brand, spanking new and we rode it everywhere.

This time, after the Anderson House, we adjourned to the W for cocktails and laughed ourselves sick at these reminiscences, and more.  Later we went to the National Press Club for dinner.  I rented an apartment near DuPont Circle through airbnb.  Sunday morning, Ian and I struck out alone and had a delightful breakfast at Tryst, on 18th St.  Then we walked to my sister's to hang out a bit before driving back to Charlottesville.

18th St. from inside Tryst


  1. Definitely better than my weekend.

    I so wanted one of those bags. I got a knock-off which made me pretty happy though.

  2. What a great weekend. I never had a bag like that--but I was a late bloomer, still wearing knee socks while my friends wore panty hose, still carrying a backpack while my friends carried purses.