Forgive me reader, for I have sinned. It has been 20 days since my last confession.
Seriously, I apologize for the huge gap. I ended up helping my ex-girlfriend Melonie move to D.C. Yes, she's an "ex" now, sadly. Those of you who have read earlier posts on this blog will probably recall the overly-sentimental post from a few weeks back where I consider the end of our relationship. I guess it has to be, otherwise the possibility of wanting to ET might rear its ugly head again -- especially for such a good relationship like the one we had. Man, it was great. But time to move on I suppose.
So what the heck kept me from posting? Well, we spent a good week packing and cleaning her apartment, then we had the spontaneous notion that I should go to DC with her to help her move and unpack. We checked flights, and it turned out we could get a great price on a return trip, so up with her I went. Turned out to be a really good idea, because it allowed that really sentimental part of my brain to get more of a sense of closure than I would have otherwise had by just watching her drive out of my life. I got to see her situated in a new life, got to attach her with a physical location. Anyone who knows me, as I always say, knows how centered on "place" I can be. While I was in DC I got to go down and see our nation's capitol and the Smithsonians as she was at work during the day. I could write a whole lot about that -- I hadn't been there since I was 13, in 1985, and the place is on lock-down. It's scary, really. Security fencing, police everywhere, guards with machine guns, anti-aircraft missiles on buildings... The whole time I was down there I felt very unsafe. I'm sure with every fiber of my being that something horrible is going to happen that will make 9/11 look like a house fire, and DC may not survive. One truck nuke is all it would take. I fear for Melonie, so close to all those hard targets (she lives in Maryland, just over the border). I also felt quite pissed off, I have to say, because security was out of control down there. Bag searches, bomb-sniffing dogs... They won't let you into the Capitol building anymore with *bottled water* or even an EMPTY bottle of water. No sprays, no fluids of any kind. Is this the right solution? Is this what we want? Paranoia? A lock-down? Especially because it was our foreign policy that made us the targets we are in the first place!
But anyway, the good news is I got to see all the big sights down there: the White House, the Capitol, the Library of Congress, the Supreme Court, Washington Monument, Lincoln Monument, the whole shebang. Hell, I saw were the Forest Service is based! I spent Tuesday the 7th WALKING all over downtown DC and the Mall, and I saw dang near everything that day. My feet were killing me. Damn, but my dogs was barkin'. Then the next day I did it all again, this time taking in the Smithsonians (American History, what parts of Natural History I didn't get to see with Melonie a few days earlier, and then especially the Air and Space museum). Two days spent walking. I must have logged about 15 miles all told -- no joke.
So I came back the 9th. My 33rd birthday was the 8th, by the way... happy birthday to me. Yipee. My birthday gift was the last night of my relationship with Melonie. It was surreal, laying there with her and realizing when we wake up we won't be together anymore. I got pretty choked up, both then and the week before while we were packing, but I'm okay now. I think I'll be okay.
And for those of you following the hurricane season, no, I wasn't in Tallahassee during Frances, and yesterday Ivan only grazed us with some stiff wind and rain and lots of blowing leaves. Nothing major. I'm safe, fine, and comfortable. Maybe I'll get out of Florida yet without experiencing another hurricane (I was in Andrew, out of a strange coincidence, back in 1992).