Snapshots from Washington, DC

This past week I went to DC for the first time as a grown up. Not as one of 30 middle schoolers packed into white church vans on a mission trip or as the oldest of a family of six with our hiking shoes and Colorado t-shirts, but as an adult.  We went for business, so really we went to work. We were only in the city less than 48 hours. We flew in Tuesday, flew home Thursday. That is the way work trips go.

It was oddly nostalgic as I rode the metro from the airport to our hotel past the town I was born in – did you know that I was born in Fairfax, VA? I was brought home to Reston, a suburb of Washington DC. It is okay if you didn’t know that, I probably have never mentioned it here before. I move when I was only 6 months old to Colorado and we never moved since. I define myself as a Colorado Native but it is only kind of true.

I wonder what would my life looked liked if my parents stayed? There was nothing there that felt like home – the pace was fast, the skies were gray, the buildings were tall… but it still felt like coming home. I liked that feeling. The feeling of being on an adventure but also somewhere known.

I slipped on my dress and zipped up my boots as I prepared to walk the chilly walk in the dark early morning from our hotel to the capitol. I wished I was wearing my chacos and I wished my Colorado puffy coat wasn’t so out of the ordinary. The DC people dash on these sidewalks with cell phones and cups of coffee, flinging themselves into Taxis and pushing their way out of subway doors. I joined in step with them, for the hour was too early and the weather was too chilly for anything else.

It was magical and terrifying all at once. Speeding through the day, wandering the senate halls for our next business meeting. and interacting professionally in a way we don’t do everyday when talking to teenagers. It was exhilarating, exhausting, and fun.

We packed our free time with local eateries and coffee shops, two Smithsonians, a morning in Georgetown, and random walking adventures. It was a beautiful trip that was over so fast. We loved what we got to do while we were there but felt a great sense of comfort as we stepped off the plane back in Colorado – to the mountains, blue skies, causal wear, and home.

Have you ever been to Washington DC before? Do you love going to new places but coming home too? Are you a big city or small city dweller?

Author: Elizabeth Mayberry

  • I interned for a summer in DC and miss the cupcakes so much!

  • These photos are so great! I love street photography!

  • Looks like a great trip… full of awesome food. I love how going away to someplace different gives you such perspective when you arrive back home.

  • Oooooh Beth, I love how you wrote this one. I felt like I was there with you, trying to keep up with the D.C. pace. Also, these photos = double thumbs up. They make me want to go visit Jodie ASAP. πŸ™‚ P.S. Let's go on an adventure together soon, okay? Okay.

  • Since I live in the DC area (and my daughter was born in Fairfax too), it's so cool to see what visitors love about it. Living here, you're just so busy all the time and you totally forget to appreciate what we have here.

  • I love your pictures of the city. I went to school at GMU in Fairfax and then moved back to the DC area (lived in Alexandria) in 2011. I was there for four years before moving back to my home town in SW Virginia. DC is definitely a fast paced city and because of that I appreciated living in Alexandria. Working in the city was a lot of fun and it really is beautiful. The old buildings and the history behind everything. I'm actually going up there this weekend for Easter to visit my brother. I'm hoping to see the Cherry Blossoms. *erica*

  • both your words and your pictures made this place come alive!! πŸ™‚ love this post Elizabeth! also, love that you went to the dc cupcakes place! πŸ˜‰

  • Eryn Ivey

    I love the narrative that you put in this post! It felt like I was reading a short chapter in your book. πŸ™‚

  • This looks like an awesome trip! I love, love, LOVE DC. Great pics as well!

  • Theses pictures are goregous! I actually go to college at George Mason which is in Fairfax and I nanny a little girl in DC so I am there a lot! It never gets old. It's absolutely beautiful. I actually recognize a lot of places in these pictures! I hope you enjoyed your trip! Hope you can come back soon(: God bless!

  • This looks like such a fun trip! I TOTALLY get the way you described DC, I feel the exact same way. Steven's family lives in Woodbridge, just outside DC and it feels like a foreign country to me, honestly! I miss the southern hospitality while we are up there. Your photos are absolutely beautiful and I loved reading this post too, your writing style really came out in this post!

  • My first work trip made me feel like such an adult. It was weird and thrilling! Where do you work?

  • Oh I just love DC!! These pictures are amazing. And oh my gosh, I want those Georgetown cupcakes! I went in November, and we had to make a stop there. πŸ™‚

  • These are gorgeous pictures! You made DC look so picturesque and quaint. I love that it's not the common things you think of when you imagine DC, but the tiny little everyday details.

  • Love the pics! D.C. look pristine and a little hipster there…

  • I love the photos that you captured! D.C. is both beautiful and overwhelming. I felt very similar to what you described when I went to Chicago last month. The pace is so different.

  • Carly

    DC is my favorite city and these pics make me wish I was planning a trip there right now. Thanks for sharing
    Dresses & Denim

  • You have such a good eye for photography! Those pictures are so beautiful!!!

  • Aaaah you're making me homesick! Especially for Georgetown Cupcake! xx

  • YAY! It was so fun to spend time in Georgetown!

  • Thanks so much! I didn't get my camera out as much as I had hoped since it was a work trip and all but I was glad I got some keepers!

  • Ooh, love these photos! (I'm also a big fan of a cupcake photo or 2 :P).

  • Megs! Thanks so much. You are so sweet. I kinda went into story tell mode – but I love it!

    Can't wait for our next adventure!

  • I can't help but take pictures of all the cupcakes!

  • So fun! you should plan a trip!

  • Thanks! I know, those big cities!

  • I know. Georgetown was such a cute place in DC

  • Thanks so much Kati!

  • SO fun! I love hearing about so many people who used to live in DC!

  • Thanks! I didn't get to take as many pictures as I had hoped but I actually like the ones I got!

  • For sure! And food is the best part!

  • Oh! I love all that. SO fun. I was born at Fairfax Community Hospital -:)

  • i have a big crush on Washington DC. I love it! I could move there πŸ™‚ i am an east coast girl, and i love the preppiness/business/prestige of the city…is that weird!? so cool you were born down there.

    i wish i could re-do college and go to Georgetown. It is the quintessential picture-perfect town!!

  • HAHA! I love all that! I am so attracted to the East Cost – beautiful and historical!