Sunday, November 13, 2011

DC Scenes: Threads of Time

Photo collage above: RPCV Elizabeth with Jud and me at our "Ukrainian" dinner; Dupont Circle and the ever-popular Farmers' market; Howard and Don; Rock Creek Park from Taft bridge on the way to Woodley Park and Van Ness; orchids at the market. Top left: Jud and Suz in Adams Morgan. Top right: iconic image of Marilyn identifying the Woodley Park neighborhood (yahoo photo); below, with Suzanne in Adams Morgan after dinner at Meskerem, an Ethiopian restaurant (photo by Jud).

I lived in Washington, DC for almost 15 years so I had made many friends and have lots of memories. Many people I knew from my neighborhood, the ANC, work, the larger community, the cultural community, are gone now, retired, moved, in other realms. The memories are

good, bad and mixed. Still, I love being here, walking the streets, seeing the sights. Fifteen years is a long time for memory-making, and being in DC taps into all of them.

That’s why it was special to have brunch with Howard and Don, dinner with Suz, lunch with Sharon. Jud and I shared a meal with PCV friend Elizabeth, who is living in Towson, MD and attending Loyola, majoring in psychology. For that dinner, Jud, with a little help from me, prepared a full-scale Ukrainian meal: borsch, varenyky, cucumber and tomato salad, and fresh-made Russian bread. We toasted with wine rather than vodka, and in English rather than Russian, but the memories flooded back, weaving in and out of our conversation like a Ukrainian embroidery. The threads of memory.

The threads of memory from the complex quilt of my days in DC were as wonderful: Dupont Circle, my home place; the architecture and gardens; the restaurants and shops; the Farmers' market, still going strong after all these years with a cornucopia of colorful and healthy produce, apples, flowers, and people buying and selling.

Jud and I walked up Connecticut Avenue from Dupont Cirle to Woodley Park, a grand walk and as glorious as I remember it--solid, historic, elegant. We crossed over the Howard Taft bridge, guarded by those four large black concrete lions and stopped to admire the natural glories of Rock Creek Park below us, ablaze in ultra-colorful fall dress at its peak. DC beyond the mall is one of the most beautiful cities in the world, a great place to live, and a great place to return to again and again.

But wait, Jud's calling me: "Redskins are playing Miami Fran!" Okay. Gotta go!

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