|U Street in northwest Washington, D.C.|
This city has taught me so much. When I came here to study at Georgetown and work at a semester-long journalism program, I thought I came well prepared. I was wrong. It was humbling how much I had to learn and learn quickly. And now that I'm leaving I'm realizing I'm a more confident person than I've ever been before. As my wife recently noted, this city was a chapter in our lives where we really grew our resume and developed more professionally.
But beyond that I'll truly miss the PEOPLE of Washington, D.C. I felt the similarly when I left West Palm Beach--I still miss the people of West Palm Beach. But what's different this time is my attachment to the PLACE. I love the place that is Washington, D.C.
I love that it is a city as broken as it is beautiful.
I love that it's a city of residents who are so invested that there are recounts for ANC committee chair election and I love that it's a city of tourists in Mickey Mouse T-shirts and fanny packs.
I love that it's a city with dining so fine that I end up reading about neighborhood restaurants in airline in-flight magazines and I love that it's city filled with carry-outs, Popeyes, McDonalds and worse.
I love that there are places in the city that brew some of the finest sweet tea you ever drank and I love that there are places here that are so clueless that they'll bring you out a Nestea bottle.
I love that it's a city of professional climbers and I love that it's a city of passionate, invested workers.
I love that it's a city of unspeakable opportunities in education and love that there are people who lament with me the absolute black hole that is the DC public school system.
I love that DC folk make an annoyed sigh when a tourist stands on the left side of an escalator (Read: "Escalumps.")
I love Ben's Chili Bowl--it's totally worth two days of heartburn.
I love the "Snowpocali"--our multiple snowpocolypses last year.
I love that the areas of the city absolutely ravaged by the Martin Luther King riots (H Street NE and U Street NW) are now becoming jewels the arts in Washington, D.C.
And I love that this city I once hated is now a city I so love.