Roll call! Who still comes here? Bloggers and blurkers report lest I let my fatigue get the better of me and just wrap up this blog and store it away indefinitely. I start working full time again next week and I'm not sure I have the energy or creativity to continue. Kinda feel like this. Ah me.


Living in DC, I'm spoiled with free museums. But not everyone is as lucky as I am in this respect. But they WILL be on September 30, 2006! Check it: Free Museum Day. Alas, the Spy Museum, one of the few fee-based museums in DC, is not participating. Jerks.


Happy Birthday to meeeee! Please drop off all gifts and hugs in the comment box. Thank you.


Ramadan Mubarak, all y'all bloggers and blurkers!


Pandi's 'Pinions

Been a while, no? Pandi just got back from a trip to Venice, Florida and has the following 'pinions to report:

  • On ZP: Even though he looks nothing like his Mommy, he travels remarkably well. His slumber during the majority of the flights, lack of explosive diapers, and simple happiness in people-watching, hanging out, and even being carried around by flight attendants made the trip much more pleasant than anyone anticipated. A+.
  • On the beach: Nothing to report thanks to the stupid Red Tide warnings. F-.
  • On the shopping for housewares: Target has become surprisingly expensive from what we remember it to be. Luckily, there was a Walmart right across the street. And a Home Depot. And a Pier One. None of which are conveniently located in Washington, D.C. and so seemed almost foreign to us. Also amazing: the amount of space given in the parking lots. Equally exotic: the superfriendly cashiers. The sales clerk in Target gave us a TV for $95, knocking 20% off of the sales price because there was no remote control, warranty, box, or owner's manual. B.
  • On the Country Club: So snooty that they wouldn't allow us, fresh off the plane, to dine for lunch - even outside!- because we were wearing jeans and t-shirts. When we returned for dinner in the evening wearing "nice clothes," we were almost turned away again because the kitchen closes at 8 p.m. But remembering us from the afternoon and feeling guilty when it was obvious we were well-mannered, nice folks, the concierge seated us after all. C average.
  • On the weather: Freakin' hot. B-.
  • On southern bugs: Freakin' HUGE. F.
  • On the birds: Fearless, fascinating, and fun to point out. B.
  • On the sunset: Like nothing we get in the northeast - watching a big, red ball of fire sink in the sky sure is hypnotic. A.


Yesterday, we set out into the beautifully sunny-but-crisp day to fufill our civic duty and vote. We arrived at the polling area in about two minutes because the place is right behind our house (with a sturdy trebuchet, I could hurl a water balloon at the closest voter). I saunter up to the "E to R" line (which by 3pm was non-existent) and announce my name. The granny manning the list scrolled down to where my name should have been, double-backed, triple-checked, and then looked up at me.

"It doesn't look like your name is here, sweetie. Did you recently move?"
"Why, yes. Yes, I did."
"Oh, then let's check this other list."

She pulled out another stack of papers but to no avail. Self-righteous thoughts of disenfranchisement and Republican conspiracies flitted through my head.

"Hmm, not here either. That's alright, you can vote on the special ballot. Are you a Democrat?" she asked as she naturally reached for a blue Democrat card. More than 285,000 Democrats are registered in DC versus 30,560 Republicans.

"Um, no," I responded, "I'm independent."

(pause) "Ohhh, you can't vote in the Primaries!"

(mental slapping of forehead) "Oh yeah. I forgot."

Ah well, at least one of us voted. . .


Today, I took the day off and we took ZP out for his first Metro ride and then to his first museum visit to the recently renovated and reopened National Portrait Gallery. My favorite exhibit was William Wegman's Funney/Strange exhibit (yes, the guy who does all of those dog photos and no, I didn't spell "funney" incorrectly). ZP's favorite part was probably the stained glass window in the ceiling.

After the museum, we treated a friend of mine to some birthday ice cream at Haagen Dazs where I tried the new flavor, Mayan Chocolate: dark chocolate with a hint of cinnamon. I'll give it an B+ because although I liked it very much, (a) it was no gelato and (b) I could only have a small amount before my tongue felt completely coated in thick sugar. Still, it was inifinitely better than that Naga - Sweet Indian Curry and Fresh Young Coconut in a creamy custard ice cream I got from Vosges in NYC. Blech.

Now that I'm commuting again and need new reading material, I'm open to suggestions. The last few books that really wowwed me were Italo Calvino's If on a Winter's Night a Traveler , The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, and The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. I tried this program to figure out What I Should Read Next (which I discovered via Bookblog's site), but didn't really find anything that attracted me. What are you reading these days?


Today was my first full day back at work. Not that the last three months haven't been work - indeed, the hours have been longer, the physical labor has been more intense, and the pay is doled out in smiles and cheekage rather than cold hard cash. I headed out into the sideways rain (curse you, Ernesto!) to catch the Metro while toting a book (the first non-baby-related book I'll have read since the beginning of the year), a heavy-duty machine, and picture of me wee one to show off to my co-workers.

When I arrived, I was told that my office move was planned between 9am and 5pm. It appears that the government is taking its cue from the cable company when it comes to scheduling. Nice. Still, hard to complain when the move takes me away from my windowless icebox to a window office with a view of the Potomac River, the Beltway, and possibly a federal prison (the last is up for debate). While the computer guy did his thing, I lollygagged around, showing pix of ZP and catching up on everyone's summer.

Before I knew it, it was lunch time. I hardly knew what to do with myself. It has been so long since I've gone out for lunch without a stroller, diaper bag, and 15 lbs. of curiousity. I treated myself to a pizza and the least healthy drink with which to wash it down - Ben & Jerry's Chocolate Fudge Brownie Milkshake.

I returned to my office to organize a few things, managed to get a few hours of work done, and then kept looking at the clock until it was time for me to run home, back through the driving rain (where I counted no less than five busticated umbrellas left for dead on the sidewalks), to my two favorite guys. They were both alive and smiling when I came home so I guess Daddy and Baby's first full day together was a success. And now? Four day weekend, aw yeah! Udupi, Eastern Market, a BBQ, and possibly a movie! Hey, a girl can dream, can't she?