Washington DC, Cherry Blossom Festival 2017

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In all honesty my Washington DC trip didn’t get off to the greatest start. I misread my flight time, and my hotel reservation got completely messed up — they overbooked and put me in a place that I really didn’t like at all — a place that reminded me of an old age home. I was not amused, not even a teeny.  This unfortunate error had a very fortunate result, however. After my little hissy fit on their customer service line, Hotels.com put me up at the Fairmont Hotel in Georgetown. I have always wanted to stay at a Fairmont hotel, but these days it is not in my price range. It’s basically a $500 a night hotel that I got to stay at at my original hotel’s rate (which is about a third of the cost). Can I just tell you, the Fairmont is gooooood. Totally plush, big rooms, amazing shower, awesome toiletries — I loved the Le Labo 31 rose scented goodies. (As an aside, don’t you think fab toiletries make traveling so much more fun?!?! It should be absolutely de rigueur.) I didn’t get to my room till 2am, and I was cranky, but I was cranky in a very luxurious bathrobe and I have to say, I did smell pretty awesome. I slathered that rosey goodness all over my disgruntled self, and it did work a bit of magic. In the morning, it felt so nice to wake up in that gorgeous bed. I felt like a queen. I did good. 

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As I was staying in Georgetown, I spent that first day exploring the area. Georgetown is basically a really sweet place for shopping.  Very picturesque. There are lots of cute little stores, darling homes, and food treats. Imagine my surprise to even come across a Dean & Deluca there. I didn’t really buy anything. I just enjoyed strolling around, putting an occasional souvenir in my belly, and photographing some pretty blooms. After the previous night I wasn’t really in the mood for anything else. Moi was tired.

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I think it could be fun living in one of these, don’t you?

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Baklava donut… eat one.

Now I should probably mention that I abhor politics and am not very interested in American history. I certainly didn’t visit D.C. to see that geriatric Cheeto who has become our president *quelle horreur*! So why did I chose to go? Well, it is our nation’s capitol, but more than that, there are actually two reasons: Cherry Blossom Festival and the Smithsonian. I did see many beautiful and robust cherry blossom trees, but I gather that they are usually much more abundant than they were this year. There was a big cold snap that killed off a lot of the blooms. This didn’t really dampen anything for me though. I wouldn’t have known that though if I was not told. I also had no previous experiences to  compare it to.  As an added bonus, I also got to see fireworks display marking the end of the season. That was fun. I do adore fireworks.

Yeah, I was there for the cherry blossoms and to see some art. There was an exhibit I really wanted to go to: Yoyoi Kusama’s Infinity Mirrors. I am totally fascinated by her and her work. I witnessed one of her pieces in Arizona and I was kind of blown away. Unfortunately, I was not able to score tickets. It is not that it was expensive, it was free actually. It’s just that it was sort of a lottery. If you couldn’t get online tickets (which I couldn’t) you had to wait on a line. I got there a half hour before the exhibit opened and the line was batshit. I asked the woman at the front how long she had been there. Her reply? 5 AM! WTF?!? You would think it was the second coming of Jesus. No, sorry. That’s just dumb.

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It may not look like much, but standing in one of those rooms is an amazing experience. The rooms feel like they have no end and no beginning, and the lights give it a very ethereal quality. I know the exhibition is going somewhere else after DC, perhaps I will make a trip. Kusama’s infinity rooms are so unique and otherworldly.

I did however, get to see her Pumpkin sculpture which was sitting outside the museum. Not as impressive, but still kind of cool in it’s own right.

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Another cool sculpture I found was a Robert India piece. I seem to be collecting photos of these wherever I go. I have two from NY, one from AZ,  and one from New Orleans. I know somewhere there is one in Miami. Got to add that one to my collection.

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I saw loads of art, not to mention Julia Child’s kitchen! The best thing I saw, however was this piece by Wayne Thiebaud, one of my favorite artists, featuring one of my very favorite subjects: cake. When I got my first computer, many years ago, this was the wallpaper. Seeing it in person was very special for me. How delicious it was to see it in it’s full sized glory with it’s deeply rich texture.

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A closer look. Are you feeling this or what?

Speaking of delicious, let’s talk food, shall we? I ate at a couple of really nice places while in D.C., but I won’t bore you with all the details. There was one standout, and it was truly one of the most savory delicious things I ever put in my mouth. That, my dears, was the positively succulent, melt-in-the-mouth lamb ribs at a place called Tail Up Goat. Oh. My. God. Total and complete mouthgasm. I am not sure how to describe this for you. The meat was meltingly tender and savory, but it is also accompanied by touches of sweet fig and the brightness of yogurt and grilled lemon. Want to go to DC? Go for this:

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My honest impression of DC. I liked it, and I’m glad I went, but now that I’ve been there, it’s out of my system, and I don’t feel that I’ll have the urge to revisit.  When it was time to go, I was ready to go. The place just doesn’t have the siren’s call for me in the way that New York or New Orleans does. For me it was more of a “been there, done that” sort of a place. If you go, I highly recommend going when I did, towards the end of Cherry Blossom Festival. The weather was perfection and the blooms were out. I saw great art, I stayed at a fabulous hotel. But best of all, I ate those lamb ribs. I recommend you do the same.

3 Comments

  1. Sorry you had such a rough start. I loved DC for the history, Georgetown and the Smithsonian… it was just awe-inspiring for me. I am envious of your attendance at the Cherry Blossom Festival – something I always wanted to go to. But I get it some places are good to get off the bucket list and I agree, visit the places that are meaningful for you.

    Liked by 1 person

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