Extended-Stay Tourism


Because of my temporary residence here in DC, I am allowed to be two things: a tourist AND a local.

I still carry around my map – especially if I’m planning a trip to a new part of town, and I still take lots of pictures. But, I don’t have to cram all my museum trips into one weekend; I’ve got all semester.

This weekend was a perfect example of enjoying the neighborhood, while still sampling new things. My Saturday morning run took me to Adams Morgan (for Indy folks: it’s a souped-up version of the bar/cafe neighborhood Broad Ripple.)

Adams Morgan was new territory for me, but I got to enjoy people watching: Yuppies returning from yoga, families headed to the zoo, and couples strolling around with a latte or checking out the local farmers market – they’re everywhere! (The markets, that is – keep reading). After my run, I head to the Rock Creek exercise park to stretch for a bit. That’s the hubbub for area runners, cyclists and other athletes.

I made my weekly trip to Giant, the local grocery food chain. I could have stopped at an organic store – which is closer to home – but my budget does not allow for that. Maybe someday, when I’m older and actually have an income.

On Sunday, my roomies and I took the metro to Union Station, headed down to the food court and into a movie theater. Yup – that’s where hundreds of people gather each weekend to sing God’s praise! It’s National Community Church, started by author Mark Batterson. (I just finished reading his book “In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day”) Some may think this church setting a bit unconventional, but I’ve really enjoyed my experience there so far. (The offering basket is actually a popcorn bucket!)

From there, we headed to one of the most talked about places in D.C. – Eastern Market in the Capitol Hill neighborhood (think Georgetown style, plus a dash of colonialism). It’s a combined Flea Market and Farmer’s Market just east of the Capitol. And here’s some trivia for you: It’s the olderst continually operated fresh food market!  I can’t say the prices on produce were much better or worse than the grocery stores, but it was fun to hand-pick food directly from the farmers.

We ended our day with one (and only one) of over 100 free walking tours from Cultural Tourism DC. There were so many themes walks to choose from, but ours was called “Symbols of the Capitol.” You can see how much fun we had capturing the Capitol in all sorts of ways.

It’s all part of my extended-stay tourist experience.

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About Meg Biallas

Thoughts From A DC Intern Turned DCist. A twenty-something goes beyond traditional tourism to achieve Washingtonian authenticity.
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