In which they turn me loose on Washington D.C.

From Sweet Briar, I landed at Jessica’s apartment in Northern Virginia. For a country girl like me, few places are as horrifying as Northern Virginia. If Hell was established on Earth, it would not be very different from Northern Virginia. However, Jess is one of my favorite people, and is also adorable.

She had to work (she works for the Maunter Project, which is awesome), so I pretty much had the run of the city. I had a Metro pass, so getting around was very easy. I went all over.

I saw the U.S. Capitol, but didn’t attempt to find a tour or anything.

It was impressive!

Then I wandered around the Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress, which is one of the most beautiful buildings I’ve ever seen. Unfortunately, none of my photos were very good. I was trying very hard to pass as a D.C. native, instead of a hated tourist, and for the most part I was pretty good at it, but the camera is kind of a giveaway.

Still, I couldn’t resist snapping a photo of this sign. I ❤ the United Methodist church!

It’s just a nice counterpoint to people like Westboro Baptist Church–it’s nice to see that some Christians are still advocating love.

I also saw the Postal Museum, and got an H1N1 shot for the Peace Corps, and bought cupcakes from Hello Cupcake, and returned to the Renwick Gallery (which I’d visited earlier in the week), where there is currently a moving exhibit of art from Japanese internment camps during WWII. However, I didn’t photograph any of these activities. OH WELL!

I expect the rest of my vacation to be fairly uneventful, so this will probably be the end of my vacation series. Soon, though, you can look for posts about the Philippines–my departure date is August 19!

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When girls play Risk

I am currently out in the Washington D.C. area, visiting my college friends. I was away for a year, and I missed them mightily, so it’s really wonderful to get to see them a bit before I head out for Parts Unknown.

I started my trip in Maryland, staying with Julia. She’s camera-averse, which is very troublesome for me, but here is friend Liz, who took the train down from Philadelphia for the weekend. We had a going-away party for me and for Julia, who is leaving for graduate school soon.

But before the party, we had to get in the requisite Youtube-watching.

(Is Liz adorable or what?)

And we played the girliest game of Risk EVER. Halfway through, we had evenly divided up the map between the three of us. (I held North and South America, Liz had Europe and Africa, and Julia had Australia and most of Asia.)

And we decided it really wouldn’t make much sense to keep playing. I mean, think about it–if you’ve got a comfortable hold on the Americas, you’d have to be pretty stupid to invade Asia. EVERYONE knows not to invade Asia! (Insert your own Princess Bride reference here.) Here is our board when we finished:

(From Twitter: @the_metaskeptic: “@middlemuse Re: Girliest Risk Game. …UR DOIN’ IT SO WRONG ;_____;” Guys just Don’t Get It. That’s why it’s always men who invade Asia and fail horribly.)

I couldn’t take photos of Julia, because I don’t like being too much of a pest (sad face!), but I did get a few of her cat.

You wouldn’t know it from the pensive pose, but she’s planning my destruction.

There was also Spike, who was terribly, terribly timid, and completely stole my heart.

Tomorrow: Maryland’s Eastern Shore and Annapolis.