11 August 2015

August Adventures to GWU & other places in D.C.

Before August even arrived, one of my colleagues pulled me out of a journal presentation gathering to ask me if I would like to accompany them to D.C. again to work on his project (etc). Skipping all the details and politics of elimination and selection; a day later I got the confirmation that I would be the one to go with them, and fast forward another day- I got the O-K to purchase plane tickets etc. On the third day I got on the plane and took a red-eye flight to Washington DC.

I'm not going to post a picture post where I talk about what I do everyday because it's self-explanatory (sort of) on Facebook with the GWU-DC album I provide for viewing. But my daily schedule looks sort of like:
0900: wake up
0915: coffee run to illy
0930: get on campus and into the office space
1000: start running EBL or /whatever/ microscope needed for /whichever/ test(s)
1200: lunch near campus (so many options = heaven!)
1300: continue experiment
1700: go home (this could be at 1800)
1830: go out to get dinner
1945: go/get home and go online or start my studying

There's not a lot of time for me to really wander or explore DC, but when I had time I have visited some of the places. By far my favorite is the entire DuPont district because everything is so beautiful, mellow, romantic, and quiet there. I feel like if I really want to, I can spend an entire Sunday there...
As far as stay goes- the professor of the group I'm visiting here at GWU has covered my lodging using AirBNB.
My AirBNB place is quite nice. It is a condo that has a bellman, RIFD key security downstairs, elevator, a lobby with a waiting lounge down stairs, and a rooftop pool. In my place I have a queen bed, television with cable, kitchen/bathroom/dining table, AC and heating unit, as well as towels and sheets provided. My host was very kind to tell me about the neighborhoods.

My professor I'm collaborating with is so generous and I cannot express my gratitude enough for his efforts. The group is very kind and open-minded which makes them very excellent team players and easy to communicate with. I was able to sit in someone's master defense, which was rather an intimate one and gain knowledge on how those things work, as well as participate in a 5-6 hour long group meeting (dear goodness), and go out for celebratory champagne via the professor invite. The school is beautiful (at least the Science and Engineering Hall is) and the campus is together but scattered across many blocks. In front of the S&EH is a Whole Foods which is ever so convenient, GWU is next to the 2000 Penn Ave which provides some cafes for lunch (and also many other dining shops), the school is next to a metro station, behind me is the Park Hyatt and Fairmont and Ritz Carlton, and three blocks down from my condo is a Trader Joes. I've learned how to navigate the streets quite decently (which is funny because the diagonal streets threw me totally off the first two days), and use the metro/bus lines smoothly. The people here are quite friendly yet reserved, and the city is still beautiful and awake like how cities should be, but definitely CLEANER and nicer than NYC or SF. Could this city possibly be a/my new muse?
Perhaps I'll blog more in depth on my travel blog once I clear up my Italy 2014 trip on the blog first. But for now...that's about it.

Things to do when of if I come back to DC again:
-DuPont farmers market
-visit more museums
-hang out in Georgetown more
-try more cupcakeries or bakeries (mainly in georgetown)
-visit the Mosaic District
-try pho14 or pho75
-diversify my coffee shop ventures
-watch a movie on the lawn on the national mall
-rooftop lounge/happy hour/dinners
-try Beefsteak (maybe this will happen before the end of this trip)
-brunch in Dupont/West End x4290348904 (!!!)
-take a weekend trip to NYC or even to Cape Cod :D

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