At my job, sometimes we have to discuss some of the things that might go wrong at an event. Like any event, more or less people may show up, there might not be enough food, weather might force you into your backup plan... But one recurring issue we run into is planning around the President. How many people can say that they've had to figure out Plan B,C,D, and E because of the possibility that the President might be passing by? We had a meeting this morning discussing an upcoming event where we weren't sure how food would be delivered because of the arrival of the President. And that made me stop and think how unique and awesome it is to live in DC. Here are a few:
Everything and Everyone stops when the President goes by. Literally.
When I first moved here two years ago, my first expereince with the President was his motorcade. I felt like a little kid as I watched the limos and policemen swoosh by with lights flashing and flags waving. As the months wore on, it wasn't uncommon to hear that some people were late for work or had to switch their usual route because Obama was coming through. Its still exciting for my parents and friends when they visit and see the motorcade (sometimes I wonder if its just the Secret Service without the President in tow), but even now to me its not as exciting as it once was. However. This past summer I worked at a wedding on a Saturday just outside the Corchran Gallery of Art, and ran into a HUGE problem. I was on one of three buses full of wedding guests going to the reception at the Art Gallery, when just as we had arrived and the doors opened, police appeared out of nowhere telling us to get out of there as fast as we could. I blinked and suddenly the road had been closed off, police officers were frantically yelling at people to go around the detour, and the poor bus driver I was with had to shut the doors and drive anywhere but there. I knew this meant the President was going through town and that would mean a road block for the next 20 minutes, so with thirtsy and antsy guests on my bus, I decided to walky talky the other two and drive a few blocks away and have the guests walk to the gallery. Well it turns out that the other two event planners on the other buses actually got off and left their guests onboard accidentally. So now I was in charge of all three buses. I made an announcement over the speakers that we would do a quick tour of the next five blocks of DC. Everyone was surprisinly excited about it as I pointed out some of the monuments and buildings (that even I was shocked to have remembered) and even homeless men and a CVS in case anyone ran into an emergency. My this story is getting long. Bear with me. So after ten minutes of sight seeing, I told the bus to turn around and we would head back to the gallery hoping everything had cleared. It hadn't. It was in what I refer to now as "frozen" stage. During this time, whatever you are doing, you STOP. I didn't know this so I unloaded everyone off the three buses and apologized to Grandma explaining that we would have to walk the three blocks because traffic was stopped. Well it turns out not only car traffic stops for the President, but human trafficking (har har) as well. We must have walked only ten feet when a police woman saw me and yelled "STOP!!!!" And we waited five minutes as pedestrians over the stretch of five blocks all stopped. Not a movement. No cameras, no crossing, no talking. It was weird. But as soon as the President passed, and I was sweating about how angry all the guests would be about missing cocktail hour, they all could not stop talking about how cool it was to have seen President Obama drive by. So yeah, I guess it is pretty cool.
Rally For Sanity
Do you remember when Stephen Colbert and John Stewart hosted Rally for Sanity? I was there. This is how awesome it was:
Fourth of July
I worked this event two years in a row, and its truly awe-inspiring
This is what I see when I go for a run:
And some other things I've gotten to experience in DC over just two years...
DC is amazing and even though i never planned on moving here, I'm glad I did. What about all of you? Did any of you end up somewhere you never expected? Do you love it?
1. It's 5:00 on a Friday! Wee!
2. I'm in such a hurry to get out of here I'm going to say the other 4 (quickly)are candy corn (still, yes)
3. dinner date with boy because he is FINALLY home
4. pumpkin patches
5. Free wine and cheese to support a girlfriend's new boutique opening!
Goal: Oystassssss, Pumpkins and Ravens football!
Have a lovely weekend!