Saturday, August 30, 2008

Father of the Bride

Last week, as the cast list for "Winnie the Pooh" was finalized, Mr. Ron (my boss) began seriously casting "Father of the Bride."  He asked me to come in and help him read a young man by the name of Ben Reed for the part of "Buckley."  Buckley is the fiance of Kay, the bride.  I read Kay for about twenty minutes before Mr. Ron said he was satisfied with Ben's audition.  I was about to show Ben where the costume shop was when Mr. Ron stopped me and asked me stay behind, he needed to talk to me.  After discussing the show a bit more, he asked me to read again and after breaking to work on some other things, asked me to read once more.  The last scene that we read was a rather emotional scene between Kay and her father.  Mr. Ron was reading the dad and we were both crying.  At the end we were laughing, but it was great audition moment. 

After about a week of a bit of impatience on my part, Mr. Ron offered me the part of Kay on Thursday night.  I am thrilled beyond what I can adequately express though words.  I am so excited about working with the stellar cast and an amazing director (Ron is directing).  I wanted this show from the moment they announced at the end of last season.  I will post more on dates and tickets as the time grows closer.   

Friday, August 29, 2008

Steeple Chase Raffle Tickets on Sale NOW

Each year the Steeplechase at Callaway Gardens raises money for the Arts in Columbus. As one of the beneficiaries of this fundraising event, the Springer receives over $30,000 each year due to the wonderful effort by the Steeplechase staff and volunteers. This year the event includes a Raffle for a 2009 Acura TL 4 Door Luxury Sedan, retailing at $34,440. Only 1,000 raffle tickets will be sold at $100 each. The Springer is selling 50 tickets towards the raffle. Please give Sara Ketcham a call (see number below) or send me an email if you would like to purchase tickets and spread the word to your friends and family! The car will be on display during the run of Menopause The Musical!

Season Tickets On Sale Now! Call the Box Office at 706.327.3688

It's not too much

After nine months, I can listen to Carla Bruni, some of The Decemberists, and the Garden State soundtrack. I don't watch Jeopardy, but that is more because I am not home when it comes on. Not playing golf is more of a time issue and going to Atlanta is something that I do pretty regularly. There's a little black dress that I moved to front of my closet and a sweatshirt that I wore just the other day. Writing out the story, like I swore I would, is a slow process, but is coming along nicely. I eat at Speakeasy and I drive by HHS on my way to work. The Market is one of my favorite places to eat and I go to the Riverwalk to shoot photographs or write. I still love my college football, basketball, and baseball teams and will cheer for the Yellow Jackets forever.

For the first time in my life, I am ok with not knowing what is going to happen next. I know that the future holds some good and not-so-good moments and I am ready to embrace both with passion, gusto, and fearlessness. I know that these moments will help me to grow and I know that "I can do all things through Him who strengthens me." I am confident in His love, grace, and mercy in my life. I am beautiful in His eyes. I am worth something because of Him. I am confident not in myself or because of something that I have done, but because He commands me to live a life free of fear, not to be timid, and to be joyful in all things. This is His will for my life. My faith is so weak and He uses times like these to show me that He has had it all planned out the whole time.

I'm just fine. Even when it seems like too much, even when I want to cry, even when I am reminded, I am just fine.

"...and you learn that love doesn't mean possession and company doesn't mean security...and you begin to accept your defeats with your head up and your eyes ahead, with the grace of an adult, not the grief of a child. And you learn to build your roads today because tomorrows ground is too uncertain for plans and futures have ways of falling down in mid-flight... And you learn that you really can endure, that you really are strong, and you really do have worth ,and you learn, and you learn..."-Veronica A. Shoffstall

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Work Email

I am such a dork, but since most of you already know that I am going to go ahead and admit it boldly. I love having a work email address. It makes me feel legit in what I am doing. Dorky, I know. But so true.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Women

I am going to be completely honest. I have been racking my brain thinking about the next thing to write about. I think that this is a good a time as any to write about the fabulous women in my life who have impacted me above what I will be able to adequately express through words.

Let's start at the very beginning (a very good place to start).

  • My Mother. Obviously, I wouldn't be here if it weren't for this lady. The older I get, the more clearly I see that I am very similar to my mother. We have talked about this and I feel like we have communicated, quite effectively, what we consider the attractive and not so attractive parts of our personalities. How blessed I am to have a mother that loves me enough to be honest with me and work to help mold me, as well as herself, into the woman that we both long to be.
  • My Mother's Mother. Grammy most definitely had her flaws, but she was a fabulous woman of God. Other than teaching me all the little sayings that I love to use so much, she taught me to pray without ceasing. Anytime, anywhere, for any reason. Because of her, I have, what I think is an incredible, habit of praying to find a parking spaces, to find a book in the library, to make an A of a test, and everything else in my life. In moments of weakness, she told me to get on my knees and pray. And I do. God truly blessed me once again.
  • My Dad's Step-Mom. If I have one strong woman in my life, I have a million, but Grandma is most definitely in the running for number one. She married my Grandfather when my dad was 14 years old. My dad is the youngest of nine boys, and no one was thrilled with the fact that Papaw had remarried. She endured many years of rejection and not so wonderful treatment. She was the only Grandmother that I knew on my dad's side and of course, to us kids, she was just Grandma. To her, it was much more than that. To be loved and adored in a role that she wanted so badly to play meant everything to her. I was named for her and she treasured that gesture from my parents. She was ever cheerful, ever loving, and always gave of her time, talents, and wisdom.
  • My Dad's "Foster" Mother. Long story that I will tell later, but suffice it to say that Grandma Jo is my Grandmother and I love her dearly. She is classy, well-rounded, well traveled, and full of wisdom. Our conversations are always informative and fun. I absolutely adore her and I know that she has had great influence over my long term goals, as well as my career choices.
  • Ben's mother. Mama Lou was an intricate part of my life for over three years. She was there when she didn't have to be. She is one of the strongest women I know and I admire her very much.
  • Alison Ross. What a lady! Her faith is something that I aspire to have, her sweet spirit is precious, and her love and grace are beautiful to experience. I love and respect her as a friend, a mentor, and another mother.
  • Sally Vander Ghyenst. This lady is one of my dearest friends. If I grow into half the student, performer, business woman, and person that Sally VG (who is 10 days away from becoming Mrs. Brad Baker), I will be one heck of a lady.
I know there are more fantastic women in my life, but these are some of the ones that I felt compelled to write about at the moment. For those of you who read on a regular basis, I am sure you will be reading about more of the women in my life. I consider these women essential to who I am today.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Winnie the Pooh

The news is out! The Springer is doing Winnie the Pooh and the cast list is set.

Christopher Robin- Ben Reed
Pooh- Johanna Cabatigan
Piglet- Me and Izzy Brown*
Tigger- Adam Archer
Eeyore- Anthony Jackson
Kanga- Kern Clark
Owl- Jeff Holbrook
Rabbit- Rebecca Woolbright
Roo- Blake Blackman and Nikki Ammerman

Lisa Cesnik is directing and we are all thrilled about that! The show runs October 1st-12th. More details to come!

*Mine and Izzy's class schedules are extremely complimentary. We will be switching off to make the necessary rehearsals and shows work.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


I have a bit of writers block at the moment, so this is more of an update post. I know I had better write. If I don't the habit will die and I'll go forever without writing.

Job-I love it! I told my mom last night that I feel like I have goofed off all day when I leave work because even though I have been productive, I love what I am doing so much that it doesn't feel like work. What a great feeling!

Young Life-We have a leader kick off this Saturday at the lake and I am super excited. Club and Campaigners start next month and I ready to get into the groove of things.

Family-Everyone is doing well and staying busy. Lots of school and extra curricular activities going on.

Friends-Good in this department too. Just staying busy.

Photography-Fantastic. I am getting more into a groove in this area and finding my style. I think that I have decided on a trademark look and I am excited about working on this. Craig Wilson took me to his family's house out in Waverly Hall, Craigfield, and I was able to get some of, what I would say, are my favorite shots I've taken. I'll post more on this later.

I think that is all for now. More later...

Monday, August 18, 2008

Thoughts of Fall

With my beach trip over and done with, my thoughts turn towards the fall. It seems as if every season has me longing for the next. When it's winter, I want spring. Spring makes me want the weather to be even warmer and summer creates a yearning for fall and all the wonderfulness that it embodies.

Here is my top ten list of Fall Favorites in no particular order:

  • Georgia Tech Football
  • Sweaters
  • Leaves changing colors
  • The routine of school
  • Knee-high boots
  • T.V. shows starting back up
  • Brisk mornings, cool days, cold nights
  • The smell of fireplaces burning
  • Being able to see my breath
  • Thanksgiving

Sunday, August 17, 2008

TLC, PCB '08-Day 3

I'm in the car with Caroline and Liz, headed back to good ole' Georgia. This morning was beautiful, but a little hot for Liz and her sunburn. I woke up when Liz came into the bedroom around eight. We all curled up in the bed to talk about the day before and the sunburn and the weird dreams that we had the night before. After some pillow talk, we got up and went down to the beach for some quiet time and what we called “Beach Church.” We prayed together and read our bibles aloud to one another. What a sweet time with sweet friends. And how special it was to meet with our Creator, sitting before the vast, endless sea and to feel so small and inadequate in His presence. Psalm 8 sums it up when it says “When I consider the works of your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place. What is man that you are mindful of him? The son of man that you care for him? have crowned him with glory and have made him ruler over the works of your hands. You have put everything under his feet. All flocks and herds, the beast of the fields, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas. Oh Lord, our Lord! How majestic is your name in all the earth!”

After showers and a bit of packing, we headed out for lunch and some more souvenir shopping. We decided on BackYard Burger (Caroline's favorite. We had one in Columbus and they closed. She was crushed.) and then Alvin's Island, which was possibly the largest souvenir shop ever. I am not kidding. Just when you think you hare reached the back wall, you realize that it keeps going. Geesh. I am a little surprised that we made it out alive. We decided that it was in our wallet's best interest to leave. So, we headed back to the condo to finish packing and say goodbye to the perfect weekend.

It's raining now as the trusty Tundra gets us safely back to Columbus. Caroline said it was Florida crying because three fabulous girlies are leaving the sweet, sunshine state. Mmmm. What a thought. I'm glad that we have to leave, because that means that we get to come back. I like that there is something special about the beach. Getting excited about the beach is a great feeling. If I could bottle the smell of the beach, the feeling of the sand moving beneath your feet as the waves come up to the shore and then roll back into sea, and the sweet exhaustion that sweeps over you as you fall into bed after a day in the sun and water, if I could bottle those sweet senses, I would be one rich girl. However, as I savor those memories for myself, coupled with the laughter and fellowship of my sister and my might-as-well-be sister, I find that I am rich. Rich in God's sweet love, mercy, and grace. Rich in His righteousness and overwhelming care and concern for His daughter. Rich in His faithfulness to His wayward little one who always thinks that she knows better than her Heavenly Father and whose faith is lacking so much.

Good thoughts to be continued...

Saturday, August 16, 2008

TLC, PCB '08-Days 1 & 2

As I sit here in the condo watching “The Holiday” with two fabulous girls, thoughts from yesterday and today are rushing though my mind. More firsts this weekend and I l-o-v-e it.

Caroline, Liz, and I packed up and headed down to Panama City this weekend. The way I wrote it, it sounds like it happened quickly. However, that is not the all. We started getting ready to leave at twelve thirty. We didn't leave until four. After lunch, the bank, pedicures, Target, Liz's apartment, my apartment, and a stop at a gas station, we got on the road. With the radio on and spirits high, we were on our way to the beach. We got to Dothan and this is where things got hairy. We made the turn that we were told to make and it was the wrong one. We didn't figure this out until we were thirty miles out of the way. So after a few phone calls to the right people, we were headed in the right direction again. We stopped at Moe's once we got back to Dothan and had a bite to eat. It was yummy to our hungry tummies. We made one more phone call just to make sure that we were REALLY going in the actual right direction and we were on our way. Again. I moved to the back seat to let Liz have the front and quickly got cozy. Once we reached the state line, however, we all jumped out and ran over the Georgia state line into Florida, squealing all the way. After a few pictures and lots of laughter, we got back in the car and were on our way once again. I got really cozy this time and I was out like a light bulb. I woke up once we reached Panama City and much squealing ensued.

The condo is just right for three girls. It's a one bedroom, but the bed is huge and the couch is just right for a couple of cozy nights at the beach. The kitchen is small, but good for beach cooking and the living room has plenty seating and a great media center. We watched movies both nights. The bathroom was perhaps the most satisfying and surprising part of the condo. With two sinks and a separate shower and toilet, there was plenty of room for all three girls to shower and get ready for our night out on the town on Saturday.

We woke up Saturday morning to overcast skies and rain. , I'm not going to lie, we were pretty bummed. I refused to get 100% negative though. I mean, we were at the beach. We grabbed some breakfast and popped in a movie and waited it out. By mid morning, the clouds began to thin and we were bounding down the stairs towards the water and beautiful white sand. We played and took pictures for a good hour before running and jumping in the pool to cool off. After a good cool down session, we decided to eat lunch before hitting the beach again. We finished our movie before we realized that the sun was out for real this time. We were more than thrilled, I can assure you. We laid on the beach for the rest of the afternoon with one or two trips to the pool for a nice cool down. Once Liz realized she was a bit burned, she headed back into the condo while Caroline and I stayed on the beach for a bit longer. I fell asleep, as did Caroline I think. Mmm. How sweet the sunshine and fresh sea air was.

We chose Pompano's for dinner and it was fabulous. Liz had the grilled chicken, Caroline had the crab soup, and I chose the sushi. So yummy. I loved the atmosphere of the restaurant. Classy, but relaxed, the interesting light fixtures, along with the the openness of the room provided an inviting and warm environment. Our waiter was friendly and humorous, which only added to our giggly moods. With our drinks constantly full and our food brought out in a quick and timely manner, we were impressed with the restaurant, no doubt. Thank you, Ms. Sheri, for the great suggestion.

Afterwards, it was out to find souvenirs and ice cream. Then back to the condo for another movie and the Olympics. As I sit here with the lights out, Liz and Caroline asleep, and the satisfaction of knowing that Michal Phelps has just won his eighth gold medal, I can hear the rain coming down on our balcony and the waves crashing against the shore. Liz was so right when she said that this trip was good for her heart. Girl time is so important. God has truly blessed me with some incredible friends and one just happens to be my sister (and Liz might as well be). Beach trips are special. There is something about the ocean and the sand and the food and the tee shirts, shorts, and flip flops that is freeing. Freeing for the mind, soul, and body.

My God is so great, so strong, and so mighty. There's nothing my God cannot do. The mountains are His, the rivers are His, the skies are His handy work too. My God is so great, so strong, and so mighty. There's nothing my God cannot do.”

Thursday, August 14, 2008

The Job

After a ton of prayer and breakfast with Mr. Ron, I was called into the Springer to discuss a new position that has become available. Mr. Ron talked with me for about an hour before asking me if I was interested and, of course, I gave a resounding "YES!"

What is the job, you ask? I am the new Education Assistant at the Springer Opera House. In addition to updating the Academy database, putting together study guides for the schools coming to Academy productions, conducting tours and workshops, teaching and T.A. fall and winter classes, and making visits to schools to discuss the upcoming productions, I will also be the editor of the new publication that the Springer will be publishing called "The Call Board." I could not be any happier. I get to do all the things that I love so much and get paid to do it.

Thrilled doesn't even begin to describe how I feel. I can't wait to tell you how the first day goes!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Breakfast with Mr. Ron

It's kind of like therapy, Dear Abby, and John Tecsh all rolled into one. That's right, it's breakfast with Mr. Ron.

Morning coffee is the norm when Mr. Ron calls and asks you if want to get together to chat. Actually, he doesn't really ask you if you want to have coffee or chat. It's more like "I still drink coffee in the mornings...", which is when you think "If Mr. Ron didn't still drink coffee at any point during the day, it either means that hell has frozen over or that the world is coming to an end." But what you say is "Want to get together in the morning?" Of course he says yes and of course you set up the time and place. When you arrive at the designated coffee shop, you order a nice, strong cup of coffee and get comfortable. You know that the conversation will entail a variety of topics from politics to theatre to school to life in general.

This morning was no different. I bare my soul. Mr. Ron listens, nods his head, his eyes well up as he feels your pain and joy, and then he offers the advice that you obviously asked for by agreeing to have coffee with him. Today's conversation started with politics and then moved to more personal subjects.

I'm not going to go into the dirty details. But I do want to share some lessons that I learned over the summer that were the discussed this morning.

  1. "Just when you thought it was about to work..." I know that reading this, you are thinking that that is a negative comment to make. However, when I hear this and when I say it, it brings a very positive thought to my mind. The best example that Mr. Ron could have set for me this summer was that no matter the situation, he was prepared for the plan that we made to not go as planned. However, until then, we were going to keep on a truckin'. It's that simple.
  2. The only constant in life is change. I wanted everything to be the same this summer as I headed back to the Springer for the ninth time. But when I arrived, I found that while the Springer was the same (kids still wearing gray tee shirts, teachers teaching, Mr. Ron giving "Mr. Ron talks"), I was vastly different. As Mr. Ron put it, two weeks was enough time to figure out that my role at the Springer was different, but not enough time to learn what my new role was. I'm not the girl that spent every summer at the Springer. I went away, went to college, came home, got a job, went through some very personal and emotional situations and the girl that existed just two and a half years ago doesn't exist anymore. That sounds hard and it was (and is). However, I am making peace with that.
  3. Inasmuch as I thought that I knew myself REALLY well, I don't. I mean, I know me pretty well and there are parts of me that that I can still say I know. This summer confirmed that. However, there were parts of me that I either didn't know at all or was refusing to admit that I didn't know. I learned that I am more of a big picture girl that is unafraid of making big decisions. But I finally admitted that when it comes to smaller pictures, I am so emotionally invested and attached that I have a hard time making those pictures work and am actually afraid of making decisions in those areas. I learned that I can fire someone, how to be a better listener, that I am not a mind reader, how to be a better boss, and I learned that maybe I am not ready for the hat that Mr. Ron asked me to wear this summer.

Mr. Ron offered opinions and advice on my future, my present, and how to deal with the past. Per usual, he told me he was on my team and that he was proud of me. Ahh. Sweet music to my ears. I told him that I was going on an job interview this afternoon and after some pointers from him, I know for a fact that I have never been so prepared for an interview. Ever.

Aside from the great advice, the opportunity to vent, and the feelings of being loved, admired, and supported, I came away with some great one liners and quotes. Mr. Ron is good at that. He's just so darn quotable. And with that in mind, I'm just going to "roll with it", knowing that the plan is "subject to change."

Sunday, August 10, 2008


Ok. So, my mom ordered this thyroid test for me to take. In order to take this test, you have to prick your finger and let the blood drip into this little round, tube thing-a-ma-bob. Well, I am convinced that a) the test people wanted me to put all of my blood into that tube thing-a-ma-bob, b) that I don't have as much blood as the rest of the world, and c) that I have now bled out. I pricked my dang finger so many times that the fingers on my left hand are all purple. I am currently typing with one hand. There were two finger-pricker things and I had to use both because I couldn't get enough blood out of my finger to fill up the tube. Then, mom pulled out the sewing needles, the straight pins, and the safety pins. I had to sit there and prick my fingers for an hour and half trying to get enough blood for the test to work. It was ridiculous. So, now I have sore bloody fingers and there was still not enought blood to get the test to work. There's $43 down the toilet.

And for those who do not get the "Buhlud" reference click here.

Saturday, August 09, 2008


I just got home from the Prielozney's where a group of us got together to watch the Opening Ceremonies of the 2008 Olympics. I am still a little awe struck by the amount of glitter and glamour that went into the whole event. From the lights to the fireworks to the enormous number of people to the incredibly bright colors, the entire show was amazing.

While the production was gorgeous and beautifully done, there seemed to be tension in the air. Even at home, there were remarks being made all evening concerning the amount of uneasiness felt as the world turned it's eyes to China. As we watched our own President and First Lady, we wondered aloud about their safety. Think about it, this is the first time that so many of the world's leaders have been together in ages. With all the political unrest it is not really all that surprising that these thoughts were going through our heads. However, as I watched the country of China put on one of the most fantastic spectacles I have ever seen and as I heard the stories being told about earthquake victims and survivors and as China's history was told, my heart went out to these people. You could see the pride that the Chinese felt as they showed the world, in a rather lavish fashion, that they are a country of history, beauty, and resilience.

The following days will be interesting to watch as the events of the Olympics unfold and the World is united in a way that only happens every four years.

Let the games begin.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Coming Back

As I begin to settle back into life in Columbus, I find myself not really wanting to adjust. I find that Thursday nights at Fountain City, Country's Barbecue, Barnes & Noble, and Dinglewood just aren't cutting it. Driving is a bore and CSU (which never held much charm in the first place) is even less appealing than before. There is no hustle or bustle here and walking anywhere with an actual purpose is close to impossible.

I'm not complaining. OK. Yes, I am. But, I am going to do something about it. I have started applications to UT-Austin, UNC-Chapel Hill, USC, and UGA. I have set my eye on Spring semester and while I am prepared for it to not happen until Fall semester, I am pushing for a deadline that happens in the very near future. I am not saying that I am completely unhappy. There are some really wonderful things here in Columbus and I am so glad that I get to call it home. I just know that this is all temporary. I know that the time is drawing near when I fly from the safe haven of home and the little bubble that we call Columbus and find something new and exciting to explore.

More thoughts to come...

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Georgia Tech Football

To all my readers,

Please note the color change here on the H.O.D. Blog. In honor of the college football season and my favorite team, the colors here on the blog are white, gold, and navy blue.

Go Jackets!

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

D.C. Induced Thoughts

My D.C. trip was one of the best things that I ever did for myself. I paid for the whole trip out of my own pocket, made all the plans on my own, and explored a rather large city by myself. I gave myself a small glimpse of life in the big city on my own. This trip proved more and more that I am ready to move away. I was perfectly content being on my own. I was so busy that there was little time for loneliness.

Although I do know that moving away will not be the same as a weekend trip to D.C., there is a sense of similarity. The fact that I was alone for the most part, seeing as my friends in D.C. all have jobs and knowing that, when I do move, it will take awhile to make friends. Also, I stink at directions. Giving and taking. And I spent this entire trip with no map. I was impressed with myself. Also, as much as I knew that my mom was only a phone call away, she wasn't a 20 twenty minute car ride away. I was never homesick on this trip and there was never a moment when I wished that I was back in Columbus, but there were a couple of moments when I wished that my mom was only a car ride away. It was also good for me to realize that I cannot escape or run away from memories or thoughts that seem to invade my mind at the most inopportune moments. No matter where I go or what I do, those memories have to fade on their own, in their own time.

Per Ansley's request, I am including some more thoughts from my written journal.

"Ah, the joys of flying. People watching is always top on my list of things to do no matter where I am...From the tall, awkward, potentially beautiful "librarian", to the man with the wondering eyes whose wife would most certainly cringe if she knew, to the extremely outgoing young man in the next row over, my people watching skills have sharpened and have been thoroughly indulged...I am especially fond of the guy with the sombrero and the lady with the tiara.

My flight was delayed and then canceled. I called my mom to let her know and she asked me if I was scared. I laughed and gave a resounding no. I felt secure knowing that over one hundred other people were in the same predicament. I was calm, cool, and collected. The more stressful situations I encounter, the more I realize that as long as you approach it calmly and act as if you know exactly what you are doing, no one will question your confidence. Apparently, my mother can either see right though me or senses things that aren't there. I think that in this situation, the latter is the more accurate statement.

This trip entailed many firsts for me. I traveled alone, I spent money with zero consultation, I spoke my mind with little fear of the repercussions...I am already looking forward to my next travel adventure. "

D.C. Day 5

Sunday morning I caught a bus to Pentagon City and then took the Metro to McPherson Square where I met my good friend, Cameron Tommey. We met in front of the White House...kinda. We got mixed up, or rather I got mixed up, as to which side we were supposed to meet up on and ended up meeting on the side of the White House. Regardless, we were more than thrilled to be meeting up in Washington, D.C.. It was pretty cool, I'm not going to lie.

Cameron and I headed to Old Ebbit's grill for breakfast and then met up with my college friend at the White House where we were waved in to watch the arrival of the President and First Lady. We stood on the South Lawn of the WH as Marine One landed. As the helicopter landed and then took off again, the rush of wind almost pushed me over.

As we headed back through the Rose Garden and entered the Palm Room, I had my head down looking at the pictures I had just taken. I glanced up for a minute to make sure that I was not about to bump into anyone and who was standing there before my eyes, but Dana Perrino, the Press Secretary. I was speechless. She smiled and said hello and I think that I managed to get out a very jumbled "Hi." Secret Service was keeping everyone moving and everything happened so fast that there is no picture to prove that the above story actually happened, but Cameron can vouch for me. Seriously.

After we left the White House, Cameron and I headed to lunch and then we went to two museums. The first was the Wrenrick and then headed to the Latin-America Art Museum. I think some of my favorite art was found in the Latin-America Museum.

We happened to stumble upon a little Reggae Festival and were completely enthralled by the whole scene. I bought my first piece art! It is by a new artist by the name Ceric MhGie. I absolutely love it and Cameron bought a piece by the same artist. We have matching art. Hehe.

After a spending a little time at Caribou, we headed back to Pentagon City where my friend picked me up. I finished packing and headed to Ronald Reagen Airport for my 6:55pn flight on Delta. However, as we driving I got a text saying that my flight had been delayed by 15 minutes. No big deal, right? Of course not. However, by the time I got back through security and to my gate, the flight had been delayed again. As passengers started to get more and more ancey, I remained calm. A little boy by the name of Will befriended me and we chatted for a good bit until his dad sent him over to "check" on his brothers. He asked me if I was a preschool teacher remarking that I was good with kids. I laughed and said no, I was born into a preschool. As I began reading, the gate attendant came over the loudspeaker and announced that our flight had been canceled due to mechanical problems. No one was happy at this point. They moved my flight, Flight 827, to another gate and it was downhill from there. From there, flight 827 was moved to flight 829's spot and all those people had to wait another hour and a half. The loudspeaker was broken and so the pilot was trying to command the attention of about 300 people since there were to Atlanta flights and one Boston flight all trying to leave from the same area. It was mass chaos. After several different stories and multiple people giving instructions, we finally boarded the aircraft and left D.C. around 8:40 or so. The flight was smooth and quick. We arrived in Atlanta, our luggage was there, and I was headed to Groome. However, once I got there, the line was long and people were arguing over who was going to get on the van. I wasn't about to get shot over who was going to ride on the van back home. I caught the next van and needless to say, I was more than thrilled to actually be on my home so that I could get to a bed and rest my weary little head.

My mom met me at Groome and I spent the night out at my parents. It was nice to be with family and show off my pictures.

More thoughts to come...

D.C.-Day 4

I couldn't believe it was already Saturday as I got up and prepared for another day of site-seeing and fun.

The Newseum was the pick of the day and very likely my favorite part of this trip. A six floor tribute to the history of news, I was awe struck by the incredible amount of history that was packed into this building. As an aspiring journalist and photographer, this was just another encouraging moment in time reminding me why I want to do what I want to do.

We watched a video on the news first and then proceeded to meander through the building. There were parts of the Berlin Wall and a piece from the World Trade Center. The two videos on the WTC were amazing and by the end I was crying. The fact that these reporters were so willing to tell the story and struggle with the balance of reporter and human being was inspiring.

The section that pulled at me the most was the Pulitzer Prize Winning Photos. These photos made me laugh, cry, and pulled at my heart. According to Eddie Adams, this is what makes a good photo. The only thing going through my head was a small voice saying "I want to take those kind of pictures." I was completely enthralled the entire time I was in the Newseum.

After that, we headed to dinner at a little Italian restaurant in Arlington. We were going to head to a movie in Georgetown, but decided against it knowing that the next day would be even bigger.

D.C.-Day 3

My legs hurt so badly by Friday morning. All the walking on the hard cement. Geesh.

Anyway, the Capitol was first on my list after I made a pit stop at Starbucks for a cold coffee drink. I hopped on the Metro to ride to the other end of the city for my Capitol Hill tour. While waiting in line, an older indian gentleman approached me and said "Ah! We meet again!" I was completely lost, as I did not recognize him at all. He said that he had seen me in Starbucks that morning and suddenly his face became familiar. We began trading stories and D.C. experiences and suddenly the man says "You know why I remember you? You look like Jenna Bush!" I burst out laughing. Yes, with my brown hair and 5'2" stature, I most certainly resemble the tall, blonde beauty. I thanked the man for his compliment and set to texting a friend to share the humor. Also in line was Betty from China. She was here as a student and loving the city. It was so interesting to see people from other countries and gather their ideas on my nation and it's capitol. The general consensus was that America was beautiful and the people friendly.

Although I was unaware at the time, I was in the capitol as the drama began to unfold in the House and Nance Pelosi turned out the lights, microphones, and cameras in the House, announcing that the August recess would begin. The republicans were furious. The Energy Bill was being debated and voted on and the end was in sight. Cell phone came out and recording began. Visitors were pulled into the galleries and as soon as visiting hours were over, these visitors were invited to sit on the House Floor as guests of Congress. I cannot believe that I missed all of that. However, I was there.

I headed to the State Department to have lunch with my host's roommate, Matt. He works there and asked me if I wanted a small tour. Of course, I said yes. The State Department was a lot further away from the White House than I thought and so even though I took the metro from the Capitol to the White House, I ended up walking several blocks and was more than a few minutes late for my lunch date. However, lunch proved to be yummy and worth it. There is a small food court in the State Department and I chose to eat pasta. After lunch, Matt took me on a small tour and I laughed when I saw that there was a gift shop on the bottom floor of the S.D.. I fell victim when I got Mom and Caroline gifts. Oops.

At this point, I was tired and I headed to another coffee shop where I waited for Matt to get off work so that we could catch the bus and head home.

Excerpts from written journal:

"Today's thoughts not much different from yesterdays. This trip was wise and has given me a perspective on moving away and starting anew somewhere else. A small taste of the aloneness that come with a different city. I have come to see the futility of attempting to run away from the thoughts and memories that are ingrained in my mind...Being away from my comfortable, mundane, everyday life is helpful, but the thoughts are there and visiting a city where I was happy last time I visited is difficult in it's own way...My thoughts on moving away from Columbus are more frequent..."

We went to Old Ebbit's for dinner and that was pretty much the extent of the evening. I was so tired and bed sounded so nice.

D.C.- Day 2

My excitement mounted as I got ready to go on Thursday morning. I was set to ride into D.C. with my college friend and from there I would be on my own. The morning was already warm and somewhat sticky. Thunderstorms were expected and my trusty yellow rain jacket was packed and ready to go.

My first stop of the day, after I walked past the White House and officially said hello to the nation's capitol, was the Spy Museum. Although this is one of the few museums in the D.C. area that actually charges an entrance fee, it was worth it. There were examples of bugs and small cameras, video biographies, and neat cars. I was especially impressed with the detail and the fact that the museum started with the bible and God telling Moses to send spies to Cannan and worked it's way up though the years to todays agents and technology. After wondering though the the museum gift shop, I went out on to the street and waited for the Smithsonian's American Art Museum to open for the day. The museum opened at 11:30am and I didn't leave until 4pm. It was a fantastic day. I discovered that I love impressionists and modern, contemporary art the best. I ate lunch in the courtyard and then continued to make my way though the four stories that make up the museum.

After I walked through the museum, making sure to sit every chance I got by sitting on the bench in the middle of the room and spinning around in a circle to see everything in the room, I started the trek back towards the White House. I was stopped on the street by some young members of the DNC wearing Obama tee shirts and I was asked if I would like to help vote Obama into the White House. I laughed and said "No, I would not." I spent the rest of the afternoon sitting in a coffee shop waiting to go home. I had forgotten my book and journal and so people watching was the sport of the day. I did grab a piece of paper and jot down some thoughts.

"First day out alone. Good. So busy that that there isn't much time to feel lonely. Melissa called at lunch and provided humor for a bit...How interesting to be alone with your thoughts. I really have no choice. My cell phone is on it's last bar and I've nothing to read."

After my un-named friend got off work, we headed home and went to eat at a place called Hopps. For those of you from Columbus, it's a mix of the Cannon, Olive Garden, and TGIF's. After dinner, night shooting was on the list of things to do. We headed to the Jefferson and would have hit up the Lincoln as well, but it was getting late and the humidity was reaching the unbearable point.

Overall, I would say that day one alone was a success. I didn't have a map the whole day and I was only confused once. I think that's pretty good for a small town girl. Don't you?

Monday, August 04, 2008

D.C.-Day 1

Wednesday night as I got on Groome to head to the Airport, my thoughts were racing. I was about to set out on my first trip alone. My mind was full of the implications that came with this trip. For the first time in my life, I was acting completely on my own. I was flying to another city and exploring it all alone. For those who know me well, being alone is not something that I do often or well. However, I was more than ready for this. I knew that the time away would be good for me. I knew it would be good for me because my thoughts were not just on the immediate trip, but on the future as well. As an aspiring journalist and photographer, I know that time away from friends and family will be more often than not and that I will be in strange cities and countries on a regular basis.

Wednesday night went off without a hitch. My flight was on time, my luggage was there when I got there, and so was my ride. After dinner and some good catch up time, I went to bed knowing that the next few days would be non stop.