Then Thursday, I cooked. Angela was visiting, Jen came over, and I offered to make them fish. I also made them the half-cauliflower "mashed potatoes". Both of these things were met with praise! That was a really good feeling. Jen had to abscond early and Angela & I delved into the wonderful world of ipod sharing. My ipod is now officially full. I'd consider upgrading to a 40 gig but really that just seems way, way self-indulgent. Besides I have a long list of other gadgetry already lined up on the birthday wish list.
Friday night was the spring party at Janine's. I was in a terrible mood and wasn't even sure if I should partake because I couldn't imagine being good company to anyone. While I did end the night on the couch with a book while other revelers reveled, the whole thing lifted my spirits a bit, what with the fire bowl and the singing. I wish when people said "Hey let's sing something" my mind didn't immediately go blank. I really do know lots and lots of songs. I went home, emailed my drum teacher that the lesson was a no go (I needed the pressure off, stat.) and settled in. TGIF, indeed.
Saturday, freed of the three hour lesson trip which normally I don't begrudge but in my current state I found oppressive, I found myself free to start some laundry and wait for inspiration to strike. Inspiration took the form of a phone call from Pam, looking for some quality shopping time downtown, so the fearless five hied ourselves to Georgetown to brave the DC hipster shopping glut. It was a gorgeous day, not too hot, and thick with fodder for people watching.
I was reminded of the two years I spent working down there. This is when I was fresh out of college with a truckload of loan debt (not that that particular point has changed much), on a secretary's salary, commuting via two buses, the metro, and a shuttle. It was a weird exercise in pain and temptation. I've never been very fashionable (save when Rob was practically dressing me, which was incidentally also during this period) so it's always weird to be in a place where people are working on that really hard. Nothing has really changed since then (apart from flared pants & capris becoming de riguer). Well, Commander Salamander must clearly be owned by the Hot Topic people. But other than that, it's largely the same. Oh and the Einstein Brothers hasn't sold pizza bagels in almost ten years. Bastards.
We hit Lush, my first time there, and I invested in some black henna. I really wanted to cover up the frustrating mess that those people left me with colorwise. Henna probably won't be the answer, though, because later that night I did a strand test which left me a slightly seaweed greenish tinge on the light parts and nothing on the black parts. They warned me henna wouldn't stick well over professional dye. Sigh. If anyone needs a brick of black henna, I have one just lying around.
We hemmed and hawed about where to eat, and decided to go back up to Bethesda and hit the Moby Dick's there. It was crowded and people looked petulant so we went to Stromboli's next door. Oh god - it was good. It was so good, we all just wanted to ignore the big Bush and Bush Jr pictures adorning the walls. The sweet potato fries, the strombolis themselves, everything. I'd go back, framed Bush pictures or no. Surely my seven dollar stromboli won't line the pockets of crazy republicans too thickly? Sigh. The fearless five were sated. We retired to the yellow castle and watched disturbing british TV. Bally well good and all that. (It's not helping me either that I'm listening to Stephen Fry read his own book The Hippopotamus in the car. My inner monologue is adopting a rather fry-like tone.)
Sunday was actually another trip into DC. Since Joe was in town, he asked us to come down and meet him at Buca di Beppo near Dupont. We did! And we met some of his friends, and got to see Andy and Dave since they were also in town, and had another awesome italian meal. Mom & Dad, if you're reading this, we have to go there next time you visit. Some friends of Joe's friends were interested to hear about our frequenting of gothy clubs (ha! not so frequent since 2002) and we called the chef out to tell him how nuts we were about the spinach salad. It was wonderful to see everyone. Finished all the laundry, watched some Blackadder IV which always has me sniveling and whimpering at the end, and settled in for the crap night of sleep you saw the results of in this space yesterday.
It's two days almost exactly until I get on a plane and go far away for rocking. People almost universally react really positively to this. The other day a coworker said, "You do cool things!" If only she knew how much it terrifies me to do even mildly cool things. People's "ooh ahh!" reaction to my description of rock camp always fills me with a little bit of pride "hey yeah, i'm gonna do this cool thing!" and terror "oh my god, i have to play drums in front of people, HOLY SHIT" and some misgiving "yeah but phil collins could play better than i can when he was six, what am i thinking". I guess by this time next week I'll be able to tell you exactly how terrifying it was. Holy shit. I wish I had written on my application that I was a punk fan, because then I could sound like a drunk arrythmic schoolboy and no one would care.