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Monday, May 08, 2006

Presidents and Pandas

I returned this morning from my long weekend trip to Washington, DC, and I am able to report that it was a delightful trip. My husband and I went to visit my dad, who lives there, and because my husband has never had an opportunity to visit the nation's capital before. So, because it was his virgin voyage, we were obligated to visit all manner of DC attractions: This means we walked all over the friggin' city. We saw all the major monuments, memorials, and museums and took the appropriate amount of pictures (including one where I suggested my husband lick the Washington Monument -- not many people get a snapshot like that).

The walking wore us out though. Even though I consider myself to be someone in good shape, there's just no way to be prepared for a Baton Death March three days in a row. Thankfully, my dad lives in downtown DC (the Woodley Park area), so were able to walk or ride the Metro everywhere we wanted to go, but DC is a big place and that means there's a lot of ground to cover. By the end of the first day, we were exhausted, yet when my dad suggested a run, I was all for it -- there are great paths and trails near his apartment. But I must've forgotten when I agreed to go that my dad is a fast runner.

We only ran two miles, but for me it was a full out run the entire time, and in the end I was about half a block behind my dad, who is twenty-three years older than I and in much better shape, and I was huffing and puffing up the last hill. Plus, living here in Florida, I never encounter hills when I run, so to run up and down some of the DC streets was difficult for me, and I quickly felt like a running loser as dozens of other runners breezed by me (seriously, I have never seen a city that is so full of runners -- they are everywhere!).

After that first day's run, I did not join my dad again for a run while we were there (but he ran everyday); the walking was enough and it has left me feeling stiff and sore.

But aside from the heavy foot traffic we created, we did see some good stuff including the adorable new baby panda (he's only ten months old and I just wanted to cuddle him), and we happened to be walking by the White House when the President's motorcade went by, so we saw the President, who leaned over and waved at the crowd on the sidewalk (personally, I preferred seeing the panda). We also were able to go up to the top of the Washington Monument and we managed to get tickets to the Holocaust Museum, which is a moving experience; although, it is very depressing.

All in all, it was a great trip, and we had beautiful weather while we were there. But it also feels good to be home, back in the swampy marshland of South Florida where I can resume running without any hills and without feeling crappy about not being able to keep up with my 51 year old dad -- I can poke along at my own pace.


Liv said...

I had similar misgivings the day I ran into one of my professors at the gym. He's at least 30 years older than I - but I could just tell he would kick my ass on the track.

I decided to do spinning until he left :)

pinaypower said...

at least you know you have the genetics to run well into older age! :)