The last in my series of a baby boomer-genealogist’s recent trip to DC: “Friendsgiving”, “Little Libraries”, “Curb Alerts”, & heading home
Day 4: Sunday November 15
It was my last day in DC, but a full one, nonetheless. First order of business: hanging out in my jammies with daughter #1 before getting ready for the first event of the day: “Friendsgiving”, an annual pre-Thanksgiving Open House offering a full-on “turkey-with-all-the-trimmings” spread, along with an assortment of foods from all those in attendance.
Best part? Getting to meet so many of Meg’s friends from various areas of her life: twenty- and thirty-somethings; single, engaged, and married—even some with kids—all enjoying their lives, their careers, and each other in our nation’s capital.
It was a brief stay at that gathering though, as we were set to meet up with Samory again at Meg’s church in Eastern Market, just a few blocks away in a very picturesque area of her previous neighborhood. Our little stroll to that church introduced me to two unique features of the traditional DC rowhouse neighborhood.
One is the “Little Free Library” a glass fronted structure the size of an over-sized birdhouse, which can be viewed at eye level. They’re constructed and used by those in the neighborhood to store books that passersby can drop off or pick-up to share with others.
A similar concept was the “Curb Alert”. On our walk down one street I noticed Meg gravitating toward a box on the sidewalk overflowing with various knickknacks. The mom in me, immediately cautioned safety, not realizing this is a common sight in neighborhoods like this.
“It’s our version of a ‘Goodwill’ drop off,” Meg informed me. “Most rowhouse neighborhoods have no garages and very small yards, so people just put usable items they no longer want on the sidewalk for others to take as they wish.”
The rowhouse version of a “garage” sale, I guessed, where everything is free.
(Uber is a car service gaining popularity in large American metropolitan areas which connects riders with registered drivers vetted by that company. No cash involved–all transactions occur via smart phones–and payments, including tips, are made online.)
Once back at Meg’s place, it was time to start preparing for my trip back home to Chicago the following day. Was it really almost time to leave? I just got here, I whined to myself.
Day 5: Monday, November 16
Up with the birds. Meg got ready for work, I finished packing, and we headed out to the bus stop. At Chinatown we parted ways—she off to work, and me off to the Metro, which took me back to Reagan International. I’d see her again in a few weeks for Christmas.
So many memories to savor from my brief stay, encompassing time with a daughter, meeting her friends, connecting with newly found Desmond descendants, researching at the National Archives, and a bit of DC nightlife to keep me in tune with the times.
All in all, a mother-daughter bonding genealogical weekend in our nation’s capital made up of, what else? …
Photos and post copyright © 2015, Patricia Desmond Biallas