Sunday, March 27, 2016

Washington's Cherry Blossoms

Washington is famous for its cherry trees which line the Tidal Basin and bloom every spring, attracting visitors from near and far. Cherry blossom time holds special meaning for me, as it always beautifully reminds me of my move to Washington, which happened in the spring seventeen years ago in the week that the trees were showing off their radiance. 

Although it was not yet peak bloom, last week a friend and I walked down to the Tidal Basin one evening after work. The scene was lovely -- and crowded.

We began our walk in Foggy Bottom, making our way down 23rd Street to the Lincoln Memorial, where President Lincoln always sits keeping a watchful eye on the tourists and the Washington Monument.
We continued by walking past the Korean War Memorial, then crossing the street near the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, and almost the entire way around the Tidal Basin. It was a gorgeous evening.
The iconic view on Wednesday.
And that same view on Friday, as photographed by my friend Inta Skinkis.

The local NBC station's meterologist, Doug Kammerer, was doing the weather forecast live from the Tidal Basin.
Cherry blossoms and people everywhere...
After our stroll around the Tidal Basin, we began walking toward a Metro stop, but decided to pause at the foot of the Washington Monument. The view and the evening were so lovely that we stayed to watch the sun set behind the Lincoln Memorial. I love spring in Washington!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016


Life is what happens while you're making other plans. I can assure my dear readers that I have planned to write a blog post or two since the last one, but somehow that plan has not come to fruition. Due to work, winter, and my commute there isn't even that much to write about, but here are a few updates for you...

Entertaining visitors...A friend from overseas was in DC for a couple of days, so we made sure to enjoy life in the big city -- we ate seafood at Old Ebbitt Grill, we caught the movie "45 Years" at Landmark E Street Theater, and we enjoyed a brunch in Alexandria before she had to fly off again. Another friend from out of town came to stay with me for a few days -- she essentially invited herself for a visit after reading several of my blog posts about museums that she wanted to see. She did a great job of covering a lot of territory. On Friday while I was at work she hit up the Renwick, then the Postal Museum, and after that the National Museum of American History. On Saturday she and I visited the Phillips Collection (inconveniently my camera battery died, but I will write about the museum and its current exhibit another time -- I bought a membership for the year, so plan to return relatively soon) after which we gorged on a three-course bottomless mimosa brunch at Kellari Taverna (courtesy of Groupon). Then she went to do even more museum-exploring while I took care of some other things. On Sunday we did some necessary girlfriend things - a bit of shopping, plus enjoying dinner with great friends..

Working...Yep, not much I can say about that.

Commuting...Metro is terribly infuriating at times. However, I have lots of dedicated reading time!

Enjoying...the fact that the day is slowly becoming longer. Seeing more of the sun is exciting! One gorgeous sunny weekend day a friend and I visited Great Falls Park, which is on the Virginia side of the Potomac (as opposed to the Maryland side about which I write frequently). Instead of entering the area from the NPS site, we hiked there from Riverbend Park. The hike was muddier than expected, but it was very enjoyable to walk right along the river and to once again see the falls from the other side.

The river was very high, and the falls impressive.

Planning...This weekend I will attend the Washington Wizards game -- for the sole purpose of seeing Latvian superstar Kristaps Porzingis play as the Knicks visit DC. A Latvian acquaintance organized a big seating section -- there will be over 100 Latvians and friends-of-Latvians in attendance, all cheering Kristaps on from the nosebleed seats! Next month I will fly to Michigan to visit family, and for the beginning of summer a friend and I just planned an interesting outing to which I am very much looking forward!

Feeling grateful...for the fact that winter was not all that horrible. And - truth be told - once the leaves return, I will miss the unobstructed view of sunsets from my balcony...