>We got up at 4:30am to get to the airport, but I didn’t even need the caffeine-infused-solace of the Starbucks that appeared every fourth gate, so excited was I. Excited to be traveling to DC for the first time, yes, but even more so simply at the prospect of flying. Flying turns me into a hyper five-year-old–as soon as I get into my seat, I lean forward to press my face against the window for a glimpse of the wing, my short little legs swinging furiously with delight. One my childhood dreams was that once I grew up, I’d be able to drive myself to the airport–just to watch and listen as the planes took off. My favorite sounds are, in order:
- Alex’s voice (aww, had to go mushy on you there)
- airplanes taking off
- breaking waves at the beach
- an orchestra warming up
- rain (particularly on a metal roof)
I must digress here to point out the sheer lunacy of requiring a woman to pack a single zip-lock bag of 3-oz. toiletries for a 5-day trip. If it had not been for the fact that I was traveling with Alex, who of course required only toothpaste, shaving cream, and deodorant, I’d have been frantic. As it was, the fact that I had to add contact solution to the bags made them stuffed to the point of near-bursting.
Due to a cancelled flight and three gate changes for the later flight we were bumped to, we didn’t arrive in DC until 4:30, three hours later than I had planned for our sight-seeing day. As we got to our luxury-on-UNT’s-budget hotel room (after gawking like hicks at the doormen and posh lobby), all our adrenaline evaporated, and we crashed on the Most Comfortable Bed Known to Man.
After waking hours later, I discovered that there was no Gideon Bible in the drawer–either the Gideons didn’t make it to DC, or the last person was in dire need of a copy–and no free wifi. I felt as though I was missing my third arm–the really interesting, useful one out of the three–and immediately had no idea how to contact people, check tour times, or find a place to eat. How easily we forget how we operated before 1995…
Hungry after awakening from our travel-induced stupor, we roamed outside the Hyatt–only to find that DC is one of those odd cities where everything closes after 9pm. Even Starbucks. On a Saturday night. Luckily, The Billy Goat was still open, and we grabbed some delicious cheeseburgers to enjoy in our room. We theorized that the reason DC, of all places, closed so early was that politicians are primarily old fuddy-duddies who are at home in bed by that time. This was, perhaps, a slightly harsh and childish view, but being that we were desperately in need of nutrition at the time, it seems understandable.