Friday, July 8, 2011

Back in the Saddle

It took less than a week after leaving Paris before my urge to blog resurfaced.  So here I am back in the saddle, ready to post about our re-entry to DC and whatever else comes into my head.  In between the many errands that are on my list, I've been snapping pictures and making notes.  I hope it does not disappoint.

Although I was neither born nor raised in DC, it is definitively my home town.   Potomac fever struck in high school and after the requisite internships as an undergraduate, I moved here after college.  DC is where I established my professional career, met my husband, got married, had kids, and bought one house and then another.   If you wondering whether I live in Virginia or Maryland, the answer is neither.  I am a legal resident of the District of Columbia.  Yes, people really do live here and no, the population doesn't turn over every four or eight years like the residents of the White House. 

One of the things I love most about DC is that it's not all things to all people.  It's black and white, rich and poor, stately homes and up and coming neighborhoods, longstanding residents and newcomers arriving from the four corners of the earth.  Most of all, it's not the place you see depicted on The West Wing or hear disparaged by talk radio.  It's full of real people with real stories and real heart.

We arrived back on American shores just in time to celebrate Independence Day, the morning of which we spent like so many Fourth of Julys before, sitting on the curb on MacArthur Boulevard watching the Palisades parade go by.  We don't live in the Palisades neighborhood but that doesn't matter.  Anyone can feel a part of the home town atmosphere which begins always with the Scouts and bagpipes.

There were fire trucks and policemen; kids with their bikes decorated in red, white, and blue; dancers from Bolivia and Peru; gentlemen on horseback; neighborhood librarians pushing their book trolleys; and local merchants and associations tossing candy to crowds.  The candy is an important part of the ritual; my kids routinely collect enough to last them (if they pace themselves) all the way to Halloween.  Even so, they didn't have quite the same optimism as this little guy.

And this being DC, there were the politicians:  city council members, school board representatives, and of course the mayor (although no one cheered much for him).  We have some catching up to do on local politics so while I can't give you the back story on this banner, I still admired its frankness.

And where else but in DC would the ACLU have a float, complete with its own musical combo?

Thanks all for welcoming us home.


  1. Awwww, you made me get a little homesick with this post! :) I am eagerly looking forward to my vacation out of Paris this year because I miss stuff like this. Somewhat ironically, I am actually headed to Canada for most of my stay in North America, but it's close enough. I will get to see some parts of Michigan and stay in an All-American city there, so I will get a dose of the things I miss most.

    I'm so glad you have started a new blog, Anne. Thank you! I'm looking forward to reading about what re-entry is like. It's likely at some point one day in my life, I will do the same. Maybe, lol. Anyways, I am glad you are back: both to your home and to blogging.

  2. Yep, that even stirred up some fond memories for me. Welcome back!

  3. I had a feeling you'd blog again! It's good to read you!:) You actually left two days before I came back to work after a month off and I quite missed my morning ritual of reading Just another American in Paris!:) Now I have a new blog to sink my teeth into!:) And to prepare for my return to North America sometime next year;)

  4. Welcome back to DC, where the politicians are Gray, Brown & Orange ;-) My wife & I lived in DC (& loved it) until our oldest got to be school age. Then, like many a family before & since, we fled across the river to good public schools.

  5. Welcome Home! My mother runs a dry cleaner in DC if you need one...maybe she is nearby. Email me and I'll give you the details

  6. Glad you are back in the saddle Anne....Paris was beautiful last weekend....