A Very Wordy Conversation Heart

This is going to be another one of those singing-from-the-mountaintops posts, so if you’re not feeling extra happy-dappy, swell, wonderful or otherwise with pep in your step do cease and desist.

Because holy crap: I think I am in love with this city.

_________

I am not sure that I’ve ever gone on into much depth as to the things I like to think about on a routine basis.  They are a jumbled array of subjects and assorted thoughts — from the metaphysical possibility of reincarnating into a different soul and living a new life after we die, like a FreeCycle for souls; to the fact that Disco music is shockingly underrated insofar as the amazing vocal ranges of the performers and the complex musical, um, divertissements, if you will (for lack of a more educated word, really); to the very specific fact that the song YMCA by the Village People is actually quite sweet and wholesome if you de-spackle it from the clear-as-bright-spring-daylight coat of innuendo.

But one of my favorite things to think about happens to be a secret, almost Christmaslike thrill of knowing that I live in the capital city of the United States.

I know it’s kind of silly, but it’s also, well…. it’s really quite thrilling.  Screw the quite: it’s SUPER DUPER TOTALLY COOL and sometimes I find myself lovingly gazing at the street signs or at the landmarks and I can’t quite get over the whole thing.  I’m a country mouse gone city, but I still hold on to my provincial awe of living here.

What’s more, I am not sure that I’d feel the same thrill and awe of living in New York City –which is the rightful heir to history and coolness and obnoxious people who think they are the shit because their zip code starts with a 10- or a 11-.  Not that I am saying that all New Yorkers are obnoxious know-it-alls who think that worldliness is an airborne disease: I am far too much of a chicken to start a fight with almost anyone.  But you know– as with many sterotypes, they may be odious and annoying, but they are there for a reason.

Not in every case.  Please don’t be mad.
Please?

_________

But I digress.

Um…. oh yeah.  So, getting back from vacation in beautiful (although not-incredibly sunny) California, you would think that I’d be pretty pissed off to be back here, especially with how cold it got today.  But I’m not.

This place is just so pretty and so alive, with its wedding-cake Capitol; its low skyline that allows one to see so much from higher elevations; and its precious little buildings peppered with strange modern structures and shiny-mirrored faceted buildings that hang at odd angles to honor the design of some Frenchman who probably could have used some meds to get his temper under control.

I love the melange of people of all kinds, from those in gorgeous coats, bespoke suits and impossibly high heels; the office-suit uniformed, who make their black-navy-khaki wardrobe work year-round; the classic tourists garbed with their inexplicably white sneakers in every weather; the deliverymen and the bike messengers and the ubiquitous tough he-men who can brave the coldest weather this region has to offer in little more than a thin sweater, or alternately can stand the hottest day covered from head to toe possibly in the hopes that someone will look at them and say, "wow– what a tough mother-SHUTYOMOUTH"; the indigents with their cavernous gypsy equipment and silent shuffling through every season, year in and year out. 

There is so much wealth and so much poverty; entitlement mixed with humility and grief and rage and everything coated with the scent of power and possibility. 

There is no cacophony: it’s just a town filled with people, all with stories to tell.

And I am held in thrall, knowing that I can be a microscopic part of their story, somehow.

__________

And as with a beloved, I want to be part of this city and its all. 

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This entry was published on February 11, 2008 at 8:36 pm and is filed under DC Dukkha. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

6 thoughts on “A Very Wordy Conversation Heart

  1. I enjoyed reading this. That’s so wonderful that you appreciate where you live in so many ways. It sounds like a stimulating place. And it makes me want to visit DC again. I haven’t been there in over 10 years.
    Though I don’t actually live there, but commute in a couple of times a week, I’ve been known to get similarly warm and fuzzy feelings about Boston and Cambridge. I love the charms and the diversity, the mix of old and new, the rich sense of history.

  2. *ahem* As an ex-New Yorker *cough cough* … Excellent post. I’ve considered writing about this at length, but I have yet to actually “live” there, so I’ve held off. I don’t believe I can really have an accurate picture until I do.

  3. Before my son moved to DC, I remember him calling me to tell me he was standing in front of the Capitol. He loves living there too, and being part of what you’re talking about.
    I had similar feelings about living in Memphis.
    I love your geographic love letter. It’s great to love where you live.

  4. awww…it’s a valentine to the city of DC. so sweet!

  5. I have never been to DC, but you make it sound wonderful!

  6. Anonymous on said:

    Wonderful desription of the beauty of the city…..

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