I'm slightly annoyed. We moved here less than two weeks ago and the State Dept has already sent my husband out of town for the night. I realize that this was a planned activity that he knew about long before we moved to DC, but I still think its shitty that I'm stuck here alone. I organized a gathering of the other A-100 spouses and so I'm definitely looking forward to commiserating with some of them (or at least dining), but it still annoys me that I have to sleep alone tonight. I realize that there are probably literally a million single women that live here in DC and sleep just fine and safe all by themselves at night, and I realize that I also have about 100 lbs of deterrent in the form of a big, scary (unless you know him), barking black dog. Nonetheless, I am definitely going to need more than one cocktail to fall asleep tonight - not to mention being brave enough to walk the two blocks from the Metro station to my house in the dark. Okay, seriously though, I live in a very safe neighborhood and the Metro station is located in the convention center so there are always tons of people around and security guards and its not an issue, but I grew up in Iowa, ok? I mean, we always locked our doors at night but coming from 26 years of suburbian living to downtown DC is an adjustment by itself, not to mention without my big, tough, strong husband to keep me safe (gag me - sad, but true).
Another adjustment? Mobility. Even though I have more mobility at my disposal here than I did in Iowa, I feel totally debilitated. I swear to God figuring out this bus schedule, metro schedule, parking schedule and matching it to my schedule takes more time than the activity itself. Monday I got another $25 parking ticket when I drove to yoga. Apparently I missed the meters. So Tuesday I decided no more driving, the public transportation is great in this town, I'm taking the bus. I left early, went to the CVS to get my Smartcard for cheaper fares, and then waited for the bus. Well the bus stop is on the wrong side of the street. So when the bus came (early, or so I thought), I got on and thought "this is the wrong way." After about 5 blocks I decided to ask the bus driver and he told me I needed to get off and go across the street. What he neglected to tell me was that his was the same bus that would be arriving across the street, after it had made a loop around the Federal Triangle. So I got off, crossed the street and waited for the next bus (20 minutes), got back on the same bus when it came, and by then had missed my class. So instead I went to the grocery store and walked home.
Today I got on the right bus (the website says the stop is at 11th and L - the stop is actually 11th and M) and got to yoga on time. After class, I caught the first bus, but then decided I could probably walk home faster since I had to wait ten minutes for the second bus that took me 7 blocks. So I ended up walking home but freaking out the whole time because like I said before, even though my neighborhood is safe, its quite a different demographic than that of Urbandale, Iowa. It is so frustrating to me that to travel a little over a mile it takes at least half an hour on a bus each way or a very carefully parked car (and now that we are almost $100 into parking tickets I've got nothing but time to ride buses).
The traffic and parking and public transportation in this town is just downright confusing and frustrating and frankly, I felt more successful at explaining to my 85 year old Italian-American grandmother (whom I love very much), who has lived within a 2-block radius her entire life, why I was excited about Joey's career choice to move around the world and why I am not at home, in Des Moines, barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen, than I have at getting around town these last two weeks. As such, instead of taking in the sights and museums like I should be, I'm hanging out at home with the dogs. Granted, there has been plenty here to keep me busy, what with unpacking, cleaning (I swear this place hasn't been cleaned in two years), and the dogs, but really, let's face it. I'm chicken shit to go do anything by myself. Besides run, of course, because for some reason with my iPod and running shoes I feel like I can do anything - so at least since I run the mall everyday I get to see the museums and monuments that way.
Anyways, like I said above, tonight is dinner with the other spouses and I am going to do it all by myself...
Okay so I decided not to post this earlier because I didn't want to get my parents all worked up...I thought, I'll wait until I get home safe and sound and then post it. Well, I didn't have to worry about walking home in the dark at all because no one showed up. No one! All these people emailed me and said it was a great idea and the ones who couldn't come told me they wanted to do something another night and then there were some people who said they were coming and so I went and waited...and waited...and waited. Finally about 20 minutes later, practically on the verge of tears, I went back to the hostess, apologized and went home. I got a phone call about 20 minutes after that and I guess some people eventually showed up but there's only so much standing around by yourself waiting you can do before a breakdown ensues. Luckily I got home before mine hit.
So dinner tonight for me is a protein bar and amaretto. I would drink something stronger but all we have is bourbon and I can't drink that shit. I'm not going to lie, I'm so freaking lonely. It's one thing to be alone all day, with the exception of your interaction with your trainer, Mansur (not even kidding that's his name, and so by the quality of his name you can probably judge the quality of the interaction), but then to be alone all night too is really hard. I mean, I didn't have a ton of friends in Des Moines, but I had friends there. And my sisters. And a few friends coming through town every once in a while. Here all I have is Joey and now he's gone its lonely and hard. I just hope that when we go abroad he doesn't have that many nights away from me because its hard enough to adjust to living in DC and not have him here - its going to be really rough when I'm trying to adjust to living in Africa and my husband is gone.
Oh well. At least I've got my boys.