Thoughts from Washington- trapped in a snow storm!

Trip Start Jan 23, 2010
Trip End Mar 05, 2010

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Flag of United States  , District of Columbia
Monday, January 25, 2010

It's been difficult to settle down and write my blog  since I've been away - there's just too much chatting and catching up with old friends! And now I'm ready to move on to California and it looks as if I may be trapped by the snow storm that's moving up the East Coast. The forecasters are telling us to expect 20 inches and my flight has been cancelled tomorrow. So now it's time to curl up with a borrowed laptop and let you know what I've been up to.

 I'm not a city person, but I must say that Washington is a beautiful city with wide streets and graceful buildings. A trip up the Washington Memorial (555 feet high) gave me a bird's eye view of the city and I could look down on the White House, Capitol Hill and all the Museums. It's like looking down on a 3D map.  My friends gave me a copy of Dan Brown's 'The Lost Symbol' for bedtime reading so all the places I was looking at were familiar to me through the book.

I spent quite a while wandering around the National Art Gallery and was amazed that I could take photographs of the paintings. Couldn't resist this one of Picasso's wife and the Matisse lady. And chatty Washingtonians who pop in for an hour during their lunch break. The museums of the Smithsonian Institute all sit so grandly , side by side as the wide street approaches Capitol Hill.

One afternoon Mahani got tickets for us to see the Washington Ballet rehearsing Romeo and Juliet. It was at the Kennedy Centre, so a good chance to see inside too. 

My friends in Washington are with the Brunei Embassy, and some of the time I've felt as if I were back in Brunei with wonderful curries and delicious noodles! So I've learned some new recipes for Singapore Suppers!

We had snow soon after I arrived, and although at home  I usually groan at the sight of the first flakes drifting down, Mahani and Yusof's enthusiasm was infectious and the city did look very pretty with a covering of snow. We went for a walk on Theodore Roosevelt Island in the middle of the Potomac River during a snow storm and it was really lovely.

Then , this week I flew down to Tampa in Florida to see Ruth. We taught together at ATT in Singapore in the late 70's. When she retired she came to live in Florida near her daughter Mei Mei and family. It was raining hard when I arrived but the next day was fresh and clear - like the beginning of a good summer day in the UK, and MeiMei drove us to St Petersburg where we walked along the deserted sandy beach , looking for a perfect sand dollar and watching the birds. Lovely for me to see the expanse of blue sea - and great excitement to spot dolphins very near the shore, rolling and playing in the shallow water.

I came back to Washington last night and it slowly began to dawn on me that a big snow storm was approaching. When we checked on the internet my flight had already been cancelled along with all the others for Saturday and it was impossible to get through to the airline. I sent an e mail to Trailfinders in the UK and was most impressed by the speedy response ..... but very little they could do. So at the moment I'm booked onto a flight leaving Washington at 10 o'clock on Saturday night- they must be hoping that there will be a lull and they can get some flights out. But I don't feel very confident as I look out of the window at Mahani's house. It's been snowing for six hours now, and is really beginning to take a white grip on the world outside. Last night the supermarkets were apparently heaving with people expecting to be snowed in for 3 or 4 days, and busy emptying the shelves. Ho Humm, California will have to wait. But unfortunately so will my friends in San Francisco and my son at lake Tahoe.......

Slideshow Report as Spam


Carol James on

And you thought you were getting away from all the white stuff!! Looks beautiful Sue, far nicer than the dull, grey drizzly stuff i can see this morning. x

popi on

Seems that the snow has followed you all the way there but sounds like you're haveing a great time. That picture of the deserted beach looks great!
looking forward to the next blog!!

Ela Rogers on

Must be lovely to catch up with friends, and it looks like you are having a very interesting time. Like the photo's.

Vicky Parr on

Sure beats soggy Suckley!

Eugene Conway on

Hello may/not remember me? I donated a little painting to your charity auction a few months ago...( the sepia coloured hamster picture which was bought by Sasha Macdonald from West of the Hills magazine)..anyhow I received your travel blog today and wanted to say how much I enjoyed seeing it. I once spent a very exciting couple of weeks in `DC.
I think your description of this "elegant" place was as I recalled it.
Thanks for the memory-also liked to see the portraits..if your`re missing `blighty take a look at my home grown painting
Best of luck getting out of snowy Washington.
Regards Eugene

Gail Rahman on

The Weather Channel is only focused on the freakish snowstorm on the East Coast that's trapping you, Sue. What a story you have to tell about your American trip. I am trying to plan a smallish earthquake for your California adventure - nothing scary just tintillating! Hope to see you within hours. . .

Julia x on

We've been hearing about your record-breaking snow from the Beeb news in Singapore. Hope you can keep warm and well-fed (more curries?).

Rachel Yallop on

Bet you thought you were escaping all the snow here! Very interesting to read your blog. I went to Washington 10 years ago and thought it a lovely city. A friend of mine did all the carved lettering on the Roosevelt memorial, Vietnam Wall, Kennedy graves, National Gallery of Art etc. Hope you get to California soon.

fishtails04 on

BRRRRR! Hope you manage to get a flight soon! I'm in Lincolnshire after Stephen's wedding and it's cold, grey, wet and miserable... looking forward to getting back to Aus!

Giovanna Hale on

Hi, hope you get out soon, snow due over here this week and we are flying out ot Argentina on Friday, just hope our flights are not cancelled!!

Ines Molero on

Hi Sue!
Nice to hear about you. It seems you are having a great time. I am know back in Spain and I`ve managed to find a good job.
I will follow your travelleing!

helen and jon on

poor you.we had just the opposite.120 degrees in south africa last tuesday but cooler now.saw leopards,white rhino,lions ,blackm rhino,giraffes and more on our game drive this morning.hear it is snowing in surrey so we may get back to find your car snowed in in our drive!

pat fairfax on

Hi, Sue. Have you met up with that Kenji boy yet? Going away at this time of year is the best thing you could have done - it's SO bloody miserable here. On half term but spent last two days writing reports so am going to Birmingham tomorrow to visit the Pre-Raphelites! Missing you but hoping you're having the best time ever. Loads of love to Kenj. Pat xxx

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