Adventures Beyond RVA

Monday, July 13, 2015

[those times that I got out to travel outside of Richmond to see the ones I love.]

| Washington D.C. |

"I can't imagine anything more 'American' than being in our nation's capital on the Fourth of July."

This year, since the Fourth of July fell on a weekend, the hospital where I'm interning gave employees Friday the Third off of work. My friend Claire was staying in D.C. with her family to visit her sister, and on very impromptu set of plans, I decided to visit her on my day off. I got to see the White House for the first time ever, and I got to walk all of the monuments I've only ever read about. (To anyone who has grown up around the D.C. area, I understand that this is hardly exciting, but for someone from the West Coast who has never seen any of the monuments, this adventure was absolutely monumental.*)
Korean War Memorial
"Our Nation honors he Sons and Daughters who answered the call to defend a Country they never knew and a people they never met."
"Did you know that's life-size?" // "Yeah, I heard he was a pretty tall guy!"
Being in D.C. so close to Independence Day really made me think about what it means to be American, and the blessings of freeo that come with that. Fourth of July is a ton of fun (cookouts, an overwhelming sense of patriotism, parades, etc.) but in all seriousness, it's the anniversary of a celebration of a declaration of rights from oppressors. In the same vein, we must remember that human rights violations persist on every level thought the entire world today. The work is not yet done: equality and freedom are not yet readily available to all the world and her citizens. Stand up. Get involved.

*There were so many other cool monuments and memorials (the FDR and WWII Memorials, notably), but my phone started to die, so now all I have are the beautiful, beautiful memories.

| New Jersey |

"Man, the clique is the tightest, the drinks are the coldest, the future the brightest."

Something that's totally different on the East Coast from the West Coast is the size of states. I know that might sound obvious, but it really doesn't hit you until you go on a five hour road trip and travel in four different states, nearing a fifth within another forty-five minute commute. Last Friday a group of friends drove up to Jersey for a friend's birthday. This meant that we passed through Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware to get there (it was my first time in both Maryland and Delaware  whooo). As we drove through the states passing names of natural features that I had read about in history textbooks, all of a sudden I felt so much more connected to the past. Sure, I was speeding down the interstate with an end destination in mind, but it all made me start thinking about the factors that it takes to draw state lines (geographic, etc) and how those barriers must've varied or been overcome by the time Americans moved West. It made me think about how history must be taught so differently here when they talk about the Civil War, do they give any mention to California and Nevada as the means by which the Union army was funded? Geography is interesting. There are so many more states that I need to see (Montana and Alaska, notably).
Angels or mermaids? You tell me.
Thankful for friends who have my back and are patient with me through all kinds of strange decisions. (Pictures from a disposable camera to come soon!)

Happily yours,


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