Vienna – Virginia

September 24, 2010

Two friends for me. Two friends for Kettle.

The two friends for me are Steve and Diane. Steve and I were in the same freshman dorm in college, and we’ve been friends ever since. Diane showed up a couple years later, and the three of us have been even better friends ever since.

The two friends for Kettle are Calvin and Zack. Calvin is a 13 year old Australian Shepherd, and Zack is an 11 year old Chow mix. Calvin is an old and wise dog. Zack is not as old, nor as wise – but makes up for it with enthusiasm.

Steve and Diane have a house in Vienna, Virginia, which is about 20 miles west of Washington D.C. Diane is an OB-GYN, and Steve in the State Department.

I like them. I like their house. I like their dogs. I like their friends. And I like their Internet connection.

So I haven’t left yet.

I’ve been here a week.

When I arrived last Friday, we immediately went out to meet some of their friends for dinner in Arlington.

I must tell you what I had for dinner …

Fried chicken and waffles.

Fried chicken and waffles, all of it covered with a maple butter syrop.

That’s right.

Apparently this dish is quite the craze around here. Understandably.

The next night we were part of a progressive dinner with another set of friends. We were responsible for the last course: dessert.

I must tell you about the dessert …

It was cake.

The cake was made with batter.

The batter was made with a pint of melted Ben & Jerry’s ice cream mixed into it.

That’s right.

Diane asked Steve and me to get the ice cream when we went to the store. We chose the “Boston Cream Pie” flavor because we liked the idea of cake ice cream within cake. (Boston Cream Pie is cake, not pie.) (Although, in this case, it was ice cream, not cake.) (But, also in this case, it ended up being cake.)

The cake was as good as you would expect it to be.

That good.

While we were eating cake, Zack the dog was in my room eating half a bag of Glycocyamine dog treats that he found in my bag.

While we were sleeping, Zack was having diarrhea all over the family room and living room carpets.

In the morning we cleaned up the worst of it, then Steve and I went to a yoga class, while Diane went to the store, rented a steam cleaner, and cleaned the carpets.

Totally unfair. Diane’s a trooper.

A pooper trooper.  🙂

We all then went on a hike to see the Great Falls. Calvin had to stay at home because his hips. Zack had to come with us because of his bowels. Kettle had his choice, and he came.

The Great Falls were good.

We then had a nice lunch out. A nap. And a nice dinner in.

When Monday rolled around, Steve and Diane went back to their busy lives, while I stayed and lingered around.

My days have been filled with working on my game, walking the dogs, helping with dinner, and doing yoga (I signed up for an “All the Hot Yoga You Can Do In Week” promotion for $20).

One night Steve took me to his gym where I joined him and his swim club for a one hour swim workout.

I’m not doing that again.

On Wednesday, I finally took Kettle into town to see our nation’s capitol.

We saw the Capitol Building, the Supreme Court, and the Library of Congress. We then walked back past the Capital, down the Mall towards the Washington Monument.

As we walked down the left side of the mall, I watched the sun set just to the left of the Washington Monument.

About 20 seconds after the sun had fully set, I realized that if I had been walking down the middle of the mall, rather than on the left, the sun would have set directly behind the Washington Monument.

About 15 seconds later, I remembered that today was the Fall Equinox.

About 10 seconds later I realized that whoever designed the placement of the Capitol Building and the Washington Monument must have intentionally lined them up so that during the equinox someone could stand between the two buildings and admire what must be an incredible sight of watching the sun set down behind the Washington Monument.


Damn. Damn. Damn.

About 45 seconds too late.

Anyway …

It’s Friday again, and I’m still here. I’ll let you know when I leave.


Home for the week



Welcome to my new place.



Diane & Steve being Diane & Steve















Great Falls



Senator Kettle



Justice Kettle


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