The Glass Castle

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A few weeks ago, I attended a week-long training in DC. Though I wasn’t looking forward to the humidity, I’m always thankful for any opportunity to travel. In my true fashion, I did my research and created long to-do and must-see list.

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It was past 7pm when I finally settled in my hotel. It was an exhaustive day of traveling, but I set off and braced for the sweltering heat. The streets of DC are flooded with tourists and workout enthusiasts, but the city itself is quite charming. Walking through the neighborhoods are scenic routes in itself. Each area gives off a unique vibe from edgy to down-to-earth.

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One of the things I dislike about traveling alone is dining by myself. I guess I care too much about other people’s formed assumptions of my current state, but that soon brushes over me once my meals are served. Here are some notable favorites:

The next morning, I went for a jog through the National Mall. It was such a surreal experience to be surrounded by so much history. The sight of the Lincoln Memorial never grows old.

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Most attractions in DC are free, but close shop by 5pm. Since my training lasted all day, I rushed to the museums just in the nick of time. I wish I extended my trip for another day because there’s just so much to take in. I guess it gives me more reason to return.

The Preamble in License Plates. Created by conceptual artist Mike Wilkins in 1987.

These photos were taken by a gopro set on a tripod. I definitely received some weird looks, and I’m sure I landed on someone’s snapchat. But I’m quite pleased with how these pictures turned out!

One of the highlights of my trip was listening to our conference keynote speaker, Jeanette Walls, author of The Glass Castle. If you haven’t read it, I highly recommend that you do. I’ve never been moved by a speaker until I listened to her. She spoke with such grace and kindness with an optimistic sense of humor. It was a powerful speech about confronting your past, facing your fears, and recognizing that each and every one of us is fighting a battle.

Work can be disheartening at times that we often lose sight of the difference we make in other people’s lives. Some days are daunting and deserving of an ice cold beer. Sometimes, I even feel like I’m living in the twilight zone. At any moment, a camera man will appear in my office, and tell me Punk’d has been rebooted.

“Things usually work out in the end.”
“What if they don’t?”
“That just means you haven’t come to the end yet.”

This recent trip to DC definitely restored humanity in what I do. Maybe it’s the east coast air or the encouraging words from strangers. I think sometimes we all need to experience traveling alone at some point. Somehow, being out of your element gives you a renewed outlook and the courage face your fears. Maybe sometimes, all you need are moments of solitude to overcome your personal struggles.

Until next time…

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