getting out of dodge

I've been quiet lately mostly because there hasn't been much to say. Since school ended, I've been enjoying the life of a regular DC civillian. I read far too many magazines, journals, and books, discuss politics and foreign policy with my colleagues and friends alike, go out to dinner and even make a few new things, and generally feel like I'm melting every time I leave the house.

It's been lovely, but here's the thing. When you don't have a car, you don't get out of town much. And in case you've never been to D.C., I'm going to let you in on a little secret: It's kind of little. As in, you need to get the hell out of Dodge every couple months or you start going stir crazy. It's a great city, but unlike New York, you rarely discover new neighborhoods, or shops, or really even restaurants. You run into friends all the time, and you rarely venture out of your routine. 90 percent of the time, that works just great. But in the last few weeks I've been feeling itchy. I need out.

Tomorrow I'm off to Detroit for a wedding and this time I'm going to see college roommate Jessie and finally meet her new little daughter, Leah! (We'll also see her husband Mike, but who really cares about that when there's an adorable little baby to hold? Mike is cute, but he's not cuddly.) Monday morning we'll take a train to Chicago for several days of sight-seeing and eating lots of good food and hopefully lots of sleeping. Thursday we'll take a train back to Michigan, only this time to Kalamazoo, home of Vahan's alma mater. We'll have dinner at his friends' nearby farm, then head to South Haven, MI for several days of lakeside relaxation.

It's sure to be fabulous and I'll let you know just how good it goes when we get back Aug. 3.


happy fourth of july, muppets!

Last year I spent the fourth of July with my dad, eating hamburgers at Yerevan City Diner because tickets to the bbq-fireworks extravaganza at the U.S. Embassy were sold out.

This year, I'll be drinking beers on my friend's rooftop in Glover Park and watching the distant fireworks over the Washington Monument.

And now, in celebration of America's independence, one of my very favorite things about America: MUPPETS!


now what?

So there have been more than a few complaints about my lack o' blogging. (How did I miss the entire month of June?) Part of it may be because school is over, the madness of graduation week is over, the three weekends in a row of having friends and family in town has also (mercifully) come to a close, and now I've got nada. I walk to work every morning, which has been lovely. I usually walk back in the evenings. (At 3 miles for the round trip, I feel that is sufficient enough to excuse my lack of all other exercise.) And as of late May/early June, I've been obsessively job hunting.

I'd been dreading the thought of job hunting since I began graduate school. Because I enrolled in such a touchy-feely humanities program, I knew I'd be running the risk of struggling somewhat in my post-graduation job search. Since January, however, I'd been ambling along under the somewhat questionable hope that my current employer would be able to hire me full time. My boss said she'd love to, I was enjoying the work, even if it wasn't a dream job, the pay was decent, and HELLO! I could WALK to work. But the funding for my position didn't come through and so my contract ends in August. As of September my student health insurance runs out, and shortly after that, I have to start paying back my student loans. What's a girl to do?


Not quite yet. I've had some bites -- an informational interview today, a real interview tomorrow -- but none of the jobs really excite me. Part of the problem is I'm *still* not exactly sure what I want to do. I'm still totally fascinated by media development, and using new media to engage people in civic participation, but that only gets you so far, even in Washington. It also is a one-way road to nonprofits, which are wonderful, but when you're staring down $50k in debt, something more FOR-profit is tempting.

What does that leave me? Government would be interesting and I'm still leaving that door open. Consulting/private development (read: FOR profit) firms are also quite tempting and I have some friends who are helping to open some doors in these directions. But again, all of this needs to be the right fit for me. And what that is, I still don't know.

I'll let you know when I figure out the secret to happiness.