Archive for ‘travels’

May 1, 2009

all things go, all things go


This is the nicest, most stylish hotel in which I have ever set foot.

This is me, and my boyfriend, in it.

(He is wearing clothes, in case your mind was in the gutter)

(We are watching Bill Maher on The Nicest HD TV I have ever watched when I wasn’t in a Best Buy)

(I am happy)

April 11, 2009

the district sleeps alone tonight


The Good

Oh, DC, I really liked you a lot. Fell for you a little bit. I loved riding the Metro. I loved walking the street, learning the landmarks and directions that would take me where I want to go. I loved how vibrant you are, DC – each townhouse painted a different color and every tiny front yard filled with flowers. I loved the mix of people – old, young, tourists and locals, business suits and school uniforms. I liked how almost everything cool ws free. I liked the Vacation Perks – sleeping in, eating out, and Happy Hour.

I loved visiting with friends. I got to see 3! Special thanks to this guy, who let us stay in his apartment with his kitty while he was in San Francisco living it up:


He even bought me one of those Sofia Coppola Champagne in a Can that comes with its own straw, while we were playing Jenga at the neighborhood bar, where they only take cash, serve cans of beer, and project retro movies onto the wall.

Thanks, Frank!

I especially loved the architecture, and going on my first trip with the Fancy New Camera.


And I loved eating at multiple cupcake establishments.


The Bad….

There was a lot of walking involved. A lot more than my little tootsies could handle. I need some new shoes, stat! And I’m staying off my feet for at least a few days. I was in pain from the time I tied my laces until I fell asleep.


And despite my best wishes, I did not do a very good job of being that super-organized, minimalist traveler that I hoped to be. I was messy and scatterbrained and frustrated, as usual.

…and The Ugly

From my personal perspective, it was a good vacation. We saw nearly everything we wanted to see, spent a goodly amount of time relaxing and sight-seeing, and everyone seemed to be in okay spirits. It was obvious that my two traveling partners were having some… marital issues, but that wasn’t my problem so I didn’t really see a need to get stressed about it.

However, apparently those issues were bigger, and far more complex than I thought.

I’ll spare you the details, but I feel kind of bad because I had such a good time and one of my traveling companions did not. I was oblivious to the discomfort, and apparently, there wasn’t anything I could have really done RIGHT in that situation, but I have perhaps made an enemy. Lucky for me, My New Enemy will probably never meet again because they broke up. The night before we left for home.

That was certainly an awkward 10-hour car ride.

But I am home now, taking a day off from life. I may leave the house to go to the gym (despite all the walking, I feel my muscles could use a little stretching out) and run to the store (since apparently nobody eats food here without me) but other than that? I will stay put.

Look forward to more regular posting starting…. NOW!

April 6, 2009

i just wanted to tell you

I just wanted to tell you that

Washington DC is quite lovely.

Yesterday, we saw all the animals in the zoo. We ate fajitas (featuring some of the best guacamole of my life – homemade or not) and played Jenga and drank champagne in a can at a bar that had Rebel Without A Cause projecting on the wall.

Today, we did Dinosaurs and other assorted treasures both Natural and Historical. Walked up to Chinatown for lunch. Toured the Portrait Gallery and saw some incredible installation art.

We figured out the Metro allll by ourselves.

And my mom called me and told me I got into Pratt.


April 2, 2009

a little r & r

On Saturday, I disembark from Jackson on what will be the first leg of

Jessica’s World Tour, 2009!

Leg #1: Washington, DC – April 4th

Leg #2: Chicago – May 1st

Leg #3: San Antonio – May 29th

I am an anxious traveler. I did not know that I was an anxious traveler until The Road Trip Of 2008, during which me and my faithful travelling compadres toured the Deep South.

I thought it would be fun. Nice to see some places I’d never been. And it was. I got to spend a little time with cousins I’ve rarely seen, New Orleans completely won me over, and I got to camp on Galveston Island before Hurricane Ike ripped the place to shreds. And visiting my Christina, in her gorgeous San Antonio home? I was so glad.

But I did not anticipate the following things:

1) Tears

2) High levels of those flight-or-flight hormones that I hate

3) My complete inability to sleep in the vehicle, subconsciously fearing that if my eyes closed for a moment, Lance would lose control of the car and we would die.

Next week’s trip is a faaaaar less ambitious, due to budgetary issues, but I’m still feeling that gut-ripping ANXIETY. I even told Lance that I didn’t want to plan any of this trip, nuh-uh, no sir, because then I would Be Responsible for the mess that was of course, inevitable.

But me being Type A and he being… well… Lance, of course I end up making most of the arrangements anyway.

So in order to minimize my levels of stress and remind myself that YES, I WOULD LIKE TO GO ON THIS TRIP!, here’s what I’ve been doing to actively calm myself:

Wearing a heating pad on my shoulders…. IN MY CAR!

My heating pad is REAL cool looking, and when I throw it over my shoulders in the car on the way to work? Well, I’m sure it’s very attractive.

It looks a little something like this:

A sack full of corn, basically. I love it because it gets REALLY hot and lasts a long time. It just makes me feel like I’m relaxing, not driving to work.

However, it stinks. Like popcorn. And makes me stink like popcorn, and the entire room that I am in.

Which is why I will not be bringing it on my vacation with me, even though I REALLY want to.

Watching Episode after Episode of Mad Men

This is, of course, therapeutic by nature. TV takes me away. Mad Men takes me all the way to 1960. And I am reminded, again, what an excellent show this is. The characters! The weaving plotlines! The foreshadowing, the layered conflicts… AND THE COSTUMING.

But also, on my vacation my travelling companions and I will be shacking up with my dear friend Frank. He’s in the midst of watching Season Two, and we’ve had a few email exchanges detailing our opinions on this character, that turn of events… which is fun. And reminds me that I am going to see a very good friend of mine, who I like, and who I never feel awkward around (unless of course we are feeling awkward together) and it will be FUN and GOOD and GREAT.

How good of a friend is Frank?

He sent me an email with the following passage:

“I was thinking afterwards, we could hit up THE BEST cupcake establishment you’ll ever partake in.”


And if nothing else, we will have Mad Men to talk about.

That show makes me want to take some freaking NOTES.

and i may or may not want to do things to don draper that are not appropriate for even a cable television show. yum.

Forcing Myself To The Gym

I’m sure I’ll get my fair share of walking on my vacation, but I know for a fact that I’ll be eating some too-tasty food, and probably will get a case of the Sore Muscles that makes me le miserable.

So this week I’m working it out.

I got a new iPod for Christmas, and I just recently remembered that it comes with the Genius feature built-in. So I can pick any song I want and BAM instant playlist of similar songs. And how great is that for the gym? I’ll tell you – it’s so great.

My favorite song to start?

Giving Myself A Treat

Instead of bringing books I Should Be Reading, or books that are Just Too Challenging, I have checked out two books from the library that I know I will like. Candy books. Books that don’t fit into my rigid Reading Schedule. I’m breaking the rules. It’s vacation for heck’s sake!

Labor of Love by Cara Mulhlhan – another midwife memoir. I love ’em. Not to be confused with this book.

A Homemade Life by Molly Wizenberg – bloggers writin’ books. I read the intro and I’m hooked. It was hard to put this one away.

So now, even if things are stressing me out, I can escape inside the pages!

I feel so very clever.

Focusing On My Writing

Here’s a little something I just whipped up. I hope you like my sophisticated literary stylings:

There once was a girl from the Vineyard,


Who decided she’d like to be thinner.

She did push-ups and crunches,

And some Aerobic Boxing punches,

And now she can eat hummus for dinner.

I behoove you, dear readers, to share your relaxation tips with me. Despite my best efforts, I am still, occasionally, freaking out.