Yesterday was B’s first day of A-100. I’m not sure he slept much, but luckily he didn’t disturb me until about 5 a.m. when he finally gave up and got out of bed. He put on his suit and then C and I drove him into D.C. to “HST,” “Main State”, “Mama State” or “the Mothership” for his swearing in and, apparently, about 7 hours of HR and administrative talking to. He came home with at least one small tree in terms of paper describing insurance options, retirement savings options, and many other options (none of which I have looked at or contemplated…yet).
Once we had kissed B goodbye and sent him on his way, C and I set out to make the most of our new home and our day. We started by spending some time in our local Harris Teeter. It is truly local – only about 2 blocks away – and having a North Carolina staple like HT so close certainly makes Arlington seem more like “home.”
After our grocery store trip, C and I walked Miller about a mile down the road to a pretty awesome dog park.
Unfortunately for Miller there were no other dogs in said dog park, but he enjoyed the water feature and running around without a leash, regardless. It would be more awesome if it was a little closer (a mile seems so close when you say it, but pushing a stroller containing 30+ lbs of child and holding a leash for a mile in two directions makes it seem less *close*).
Once we had settled Miller back into the apartment, we made our way to the Ballston Metro – another 2 block walk (in a different direction). The convenience of everything is amazing. I have to admit that I have sorely missed living in a city with underground transportation and an ambulatory population. Once on the metro (a treat for C in and of itself) we took it to the Smithsonian and walked along the National Mall to the Smithsonian carousel. Not a bad view for our walk…
On our way we walked through one of the stunning gardens surrounding the Smithsonian buildings. I do NOT have a green thumb, so I was amazed by the lush, healthy plants as far as the eye can see.
I was particularly taken with a sculpture of a bird and the beautiful flowers surrounding it – and was even more taken with it when I saw that it depicted a “Carolina Parakeet,” the first of several “Carolina” references in our day.
Next it was on to the Merry-Go-Round (or “America Round” according to C (say it fast, you’ll get it). C chose her horse, but while she was deciding which of the pretty little ponies she wanted to ride (or whether she wanted to ride a big blue dragon) we passed the North Carolina horse, so we couldn’t resist a quick hug on the way by.
We ended our first day as “locals” in D.C. enjoying ice cream on the Mall, taking the metro home and having Indian food for dinner.
B’s day was exciting too (he copped to *almost* tearing up when he took the oath) so all in all a successful introduction to life in the Nation’s Capital. Let’s hope all our days are as lovely as this one was…