Saturday, January 28, 2012

The Week That Was

Attending the White House Tour and covering the White House’s State of the Union Tweetup made for an eventful week. The tourists aligned outside of Hamilton Place behind the Treasury Department; however, unlike the Christmas tour neither camera nor purses were allowed. A man brought his camera and a lady brought her purse. I recommended to both of them to walk across the street to the W Hotel asking customer service to hold it for them until the tour concluded. The nearby hotels housed tourists so they understood. I met with fellow bloggers and others in the line. Walking into the White House, it felt different without the lights and trees. The residence looked naked. I remembered all of the adornment. My group did get the funniest tour guide that I ever had. He admitted that he was a Secret Service man (Who knew? I originally thought, but, then it made since they were responsible for protecting the President. That would be the best Secret Service job in the world!). The group also had a toddler who though made noises, didn’t cry. He was very well-behaved for 45 minutes.

Once the tour concluded, I walked home to drop off some of my White House memorabilia then scheduled lunch at the downtown DC Morton’s Steakhouse. Lunch was divine but more importantly the hostess remembered my name and seating preference over one year later. That customer service made me seriously reconsider the restaurant given that my favorite didn’t accept reservations for 1 anymore. I ate shrimp and scallops plus people-watch. The atmosphere resembled the Palm and every other high-end steakhouse. I returned home getting ready for my second Tweetup. 

This was my second time at the White House and was ecstatic that the Eisenhower Executive Office Building has wi-fi allowing me to carry my laptop there. The security procedure was late so the guards were scrambling. I sat four rows behind because of the rush making my photos blurry. Mind you I never used my wi-fi connection so I was very happy for assistance. Finally, I got the Internet connection and started asking my Twitter followers for more State of the Union questions. Once President Obama started there was so much Internet traffic I was forced to use Apple Safari over Internet Explorer. I tweeted so much that I thought Twitter would put me in Twitter jail. There were so many people retweeting my posts it amazed me that I could paraphrase President Obama’s speech. After the speech ended, administration officials spoke to the bloggers. I didn’t exit until 11:15pm. The 17th street McDonalds closed forcing me to huff all the way to 19th & M streets which stayed opened until 1am. I bought dinner returning home around 12 midnight. 

I was happy that I took Wednesday off to recuperate because I was up since 7am. Usually I worked from 7am to 4:30pm but the White House schedule stretched until early Wednesday morning. When I came back to work at Thursday I was so giddy knowing that I was registered for the Agency’s International Accounts training program. This course expanded my network letting me exploit opportunities in another directorate. I felt that I accomplished so much in my current position and though I loved my Agency, I needed new challenges. The training program exposed me to new stuff. Since it was down time, I also got to reexamine my personal interests. I decided to switch my science interests from physics to biology because I had more classes underneath my belt with the latter. In high school I took biology, botany and anatomy & physiology. NASA’s Astronaut program mandating pure science degrees over social science degrees (I have an economics one.), motivates me to pursue it. While enrolled in UDC and taking calculus III, I learned that the physics majors only had to take calculus II. If I had that kind of math proficiency certainly I could master biology or physics. Most of my math credits covered the UDC’s biology major leaving me only the science part. I ordered Biology Essentials for Dummies and was glad that I had because if I purchased Biology for Dummies it would had whooped my butt. That was too much information and biology required a lot of memorization!

Friday was the Commerce Department Combined Leaders Development program graduation. I volunteered as the floater/usher taking Deputy Secretary to her seat. How cool was that? I wanted to give back because the leadership development program helped me in my career. Tonight it helped me understand that I was frustrated not getting the proper management opportunities on my job so I registered for ServeDC and Greater DC Cares. I possessed project management certification so I was qualified to do the work. After completing the online orientation, I would RSVP for February leadership volunteer program. I would volunteer my way towards becoming a manager or a director. I owed that clarity to the Department’s program. It was very rare that every single day was eventful but this week was the exception.

The Best Time to Blog

This is a very good ReadWriteWeb article entitled about the Best Time to Blog. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Dinner at Lost Society

I ate at Lost Society off of U Street tonight because next Saturday the restaurant is the destination after the Young Guru Gilt City DC event. I mistakenly RSVPed for tomorrow because the hostess honored my reservation allowing me to dine there. I was happy that Lost Society still offered Restaurant Week one week afterward. I ordered the lobster quinoa, Parpardelle pasta and chocolate and butterscotch cookies with gelato. I loved all three dishes and immediately after finishing up my meal, I found the manager asking about the Gilt City DC details. I made a RSVP guaranteeing a smooth transition from the studio to the restaurant. The deal mentioned only light hors d'oeuvre I covered myself by placing a dinner reservation. Overall, I thought that Lost Society’s ambiance would complement Gilt City’s event. I cannot wait!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Masa 14 Dinner Restaurant Week Review

I went to Masa 14 for my final Restaurant Week meal because I saw the Kung Fu Chicken. Anything named that was worthy of a try. Since it was on 14th street instead of either downtown, DuPont Circle or Georgetown, I didn’t think that I needed to reserve on Opentable a day before; but, I was wrong. I called the restaurant for 8pm. I wore my black Neiman Marcus cashmere sweater, black Armani Exchange jeans and black Nine West booties there because I wanted to stand out against all of those low-rent hipsters. I was right. I looked way more polished than these peons. Well, I started ordering and first up with the Masa chicken salad which I loved because it had more chicken than salad. Second was the okra and chilies which was okay but the dish contained more chilies than okra disappointing me. Third, was the Kung Fu Chicken, the reason why I dined there. It was very good not tasting like generic Chinese food with MSG. The dish tasted like an actual chef created it. Finally, there was the banana cake dessert. It was moist and delicious! I would return to Masa because unlike other small plate restaurant, I left full which was wonderful because I had no desire to cook after returning home.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Thoroughly Enjoying the Brief January Warm-Up

The nice 65-degree weather (I don’t care what anyone says about global warming. I need this after that bone chilling cold weather earlier this week!) has made me put on my salmon pink Ann Taylor dress and Stuart Weitzman Mykonos sandals running all the way to McCormick & Schmicks off of F street for salmon rigatoni! I need this and an earlier nap to refresh my legs! I think because I have run so fast that the blood in my brain couldn’t get any oxygen forcing me to take aspirin. However, it is very rare to have a mid-60 day in January. Tomorrow it’ll be colder so enjoy it now!