Sorry kids, got no pictures as my camera died on me Saturday morning,
despite feeding it new batteries before we left. Will
steal some (with permission) from another Bella soon.
Probably for the best, I'm not too proficient with a camera.
Wow, what a weekend! It was so much fun spending time with a group of women I've met online. That was definitely the best part of the weekend...well, that and the food. The Greek diner, Maggiano's, the big breakfast, it was all good. Very, very good.
Friday night we went to the Greek diner and then headed over to Kati's house to talk and share some books. I was good - only took 2! - and just sat and enjoyed the conversation. I am the quiet one of the group, but I hope the ladies didn't think that meant I wasn't having a good time, because I thought it was wonderful. It's just my way, and I love listening to these passionate conversations, especially when they are about books.
Saturday morning we had a big breakfast, and I cannot believe I've never had caramel french toast before. It was sooo yummy. We met up with one of the Bellas, Monica, and after fortifying ourselves, caught the train to head downtown.
We started out at the Washington Monument, and I thank Rach for being full of useful (not useless) information. We kept walking and saw a group of Canadian soldiers (and their forearms). The uniform has never done anything for me, but man, I have to admit they were built, and looked very capable...of many things. After enjoying that view, we made our way down to the World War 2 Memorial, which was very touching. One thing that really got to me was how many young people (teenagers) would go up to the veterans and thanking them for serving. It was just very moving, and reading the engravings really hit home as to how much we have to be thankful for.
Next we went to take pictures of the Lincoln Memorial, definitely a recognizable monument from many movies I've seen. Throughout our little outing we caught many glimpses of the White House, though no one was home, what with Jenna Bush getting married on Saturday.
By this time we were hungry again, so we stopped for a quick bite to eat. Isn't it nice to be around people who constantly think of food? I think it is. There was no going hungry on this vacation. Loved that.
Next we decided we wanted to see the National Cathedral, which was just astounding. I am not a religious person, nor was I raised with any religious education - my family didn't go to church - but I am spiritual and you can't help but feel a reverence for the beauty and peace of such an amazing place. The stained glass windows were incredibly gorgeous and vibrant, and the stone carvings and intricate detail were incredible. It was so beautiful. Did not see the carving of Darth Vader though, but that's okay.
By this time the Bellas were exhausted. We headed back, after waiting about 45 minutes for a bus, then went back to the hotel to crash and get ready for dinner, where more fun was to be had. Maggiano's is one of my favorite restaurants as I've never had a bad meal there, and this was no exception. We did family style, which if you love to eat is my idea of heaven. Appetizers, pasta, entree, dessert. It was all delicious, and the food never stopped coming. Our server was a good-looking and outgoing man with a Jamaican(?) accent by the name of Angus, and he really enhanced our dining experience in a variety of ways.
Oh, and more books were involved, as many brought their keepers to share. Me I should not go out in public, or at the very least have a checklist of things to doublecheck before leaving the house. I left my "Kingdom of Dreams" and "The Spymaster's Lady" at home. I need to stop putting books in Borders bags because I grabbed the wrong bag. So if any of the Bellas would like one of these books, please let me know. Whoever responds first will get that book.
Sunday it was time to leave. I was originally scheduled for a 2:35 flight but was encouraged to go standby on a 12:30 flight, but I felt bad for abandoning Julie so soon. (Jules, I'm glad you made it home all right, sweetie). I did make the earlier flight, which was a relief, and it was one of the more turbulent flights I've been on. It wasn't horrible, but it was very shaky, especially landing. You have to thank the pilots for a job very well done after that type of landing, that is for sure.
It was sad to have the weekend come to an end, but at the same time it was also the beginning of many good times to come. You just never know what the Bellas might get themselves into. I hope to be there for every single moment :)