Thursday, February 16, 2006

It's Fun to Travel! Part Two

Okay, finally I can finish posting about my trip. My entire experience was tainted by the fact that, after we all got back from this "fire up the troops" company meeting - complete with new CEO - a key person from our company was fired. A good friend no less. For no apparent reason. And officially, not actually fired. Sort of the "go find some other work to do in the company and if you can't, then look for another company". How rude! Needless to say, this has sent some ripples of uncertainty through the company and definitely put out our troop's "fire".

So, with that off my chest, here's the rest of my trip report...

So Friday night, Loving Husband flew into Virginia, as did male-friend-who-is-too-mature-to-call-boyfriend of co-worker, and we headed down to Georgetown. Based on the advice from a co-worker who lives in Virginia (hereafter known as "Idiot") , we avoided the parking headache and took the Metro. Now I love the Metro - don't get me wrong. But it's not the fastest way to get anywhere. Since by the time we left the hotel we were starving, this was not a good thing. Also, the Metro stop that aforementioned Idiot said was supposed to be "a few blocks" away from the pizza place (Pizza Paradiso, if you're curious), was not. Twenty minutes and a potty stop later, we decided to hail a cab. It was TWELVE blocks away. To me, twelve does not equal "a few". Idiot.

So we get there and guess what? Thirty minute wait. Gads! The dudes diligently waited while co-worker C. and I rushed down to H&M to do some quick shoppping. What a wonderful store! Vintage-looking clothing at fractions of the price of real. Anyway, once we got a table, and got gourmet pizza and beer, and we were happy. They had some wonderful beer on the menu, and I got to try an Old Rasputin Imperial Russian Stout. I like dark beer. The more opaque, coffee and chocolately-tasting, the better. And this one did not disappoint.

The next day, Saturday, we decided to head to downtown D.C. C. wanted to see the Smithsonian stuff and we wanted to take in the Holocaust Museum. Loving Husband's folks lived in D.C. for about five years while we were in college, so we have seen everything in the Smithsonian. Most places more than once. Along with assorted childhood homes of presidents and battlefields. The only stuff we haven't seen is the new stuff (new meaning "within the last fifteen years"), which included the Holocaust Museum and the Spy Museum. We intended to take in both.

We decided on the Holocaust Museum first, due to its somber nature. We figured we'd be horrified first, then go to the Spy Museum and see the lighter "James Bond" stuff. Well, due to the above-mentioned slowness of Metro travel, as well as impending weather, as well as stopping at Kohl's on the way to buy hats and scarfes for the impending weather, we didn't make it to the Spy Museum. We just ran out of time. And steam.

So, the Holocaust Museum. How can I describe it? I was actually a bit frightened to go through it. There's some horrible stuff that happened, and they don't pull any punches in describing and showing it to you. But I felt like it was my civic (human?) duty to see the horror, to appreciate the magnitude of what happened. The Holocaust Museum is not something someone can say they "enjoyed", but I'm definitely glad I endured it. It was enlightening, if nothing else. I can say that I've never been in a more quiet museum. Even with the ocassional sobbing from some visitors.

So we rolled out of the Museum around 4:00pm and decided to head back to the hotel. At this point it was raining and starting to get colder. I still didn't think it looked like it would snow. Silly girl! We had reservations at Two Quail at 8:30pm that night for our anniversary, so we wanted to get back, rest up and clean up before heading there.

On the way back to the hotel, the snow started. Big, fluffy flakes that quickly accumulated. By the time we got to the car (parked in the Metro parking lot), it was covered. By the time we got back to the hotel, there was enough snow to make it slippery to drive. While I still wanted to brave the elements and go to Two Quail (being a December baby, I learned to drive in the snow, and don't mind it), I conceded that we could probably find someplace equally nice out in the Fairfax area. And it probably wouldn't be crowded since Virginians get the hell off the roads when it snows. The streets were eerily empty! We chose M&S Grill at Reston Town Center. It was a short drive to it, there was indeed hardly anyone there, and the dinner was wonderful. As a bonus, they sat us near the bar, so we got to peek at the Olympics on the multiple TVs. Then back at the hotel, we went outside and made snowballs with the nice sticky snow. A perfect anniversary celebration, if you ask me.

This is a lot already, so I guess there will be a Part Three. Stay tuned!

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