Winter Travels!

Trip Start Dec 26, 2011
Trip End Dec 29, 2011

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Flag of United States  , Massachusetts
Saturday, December 24, 2011

T-minus thirty-four(ish) hours until our family leaves for our Christmas Vacation trip to Washington D.C.!  I am excited to go - I loved D.C. last time we went, and that was quite a few years ago (summer 2004, I believe).  We're staying in a nice hotel that isn't too expensive each night, and so much of D.C. is free (the Smithsonian Museums, all of the outdoor memorials, and even the National Zoo).  I would love to see the pandas if possible, the Hope Diamond, the Lincoln Memorial, the White House, and just the city itself.  Of course, I'm up for almost anything, especially if it's free.

However, there are a few downsides/worries that I have:
One (and this is totally irrelevant and unimportant) - I fear that staying in nice hotels all the time will make me entirely ill-prepared for the not-so-savory hostels I'm sure to end up in while studying abroad in Europe.
Two - I have yet to pack.  I had a lovely, long Christmas Eve today, and I have a (hopefully) lovely, long Christmas Day tomorrow, and then Mom wants to be on the road by 9AM on Monday for our looooooooong and not-so lovely drive.  I have no idea when I'll pack; I'm not sure what clothes will be functional, warm, versatile (for weather), and decently attractive; if I rush pack I'll most likely forget some vital item.
Three - My camera situation is actually really bothering me.  A few days ago I broke my smaller but more useful camera lens, the 18mm-55mm.  It really was a random accident, where I was using my lens properly but it's getting up there in years and also a pretty cheap lens to begin with.  Now, I have to a.) find a lens to replace it (it's rather difficult to find especially around Christmas), b.) take the plunge and order it, and c.) wait for it to arrive.  (And I'm just now considering getting a better-made one, which means more time is needed to go back to the camera store and discuss options.)  In the meantime, I luckily have a zoom lens for my DSLR plus a pretty crappy quality (but thus far very resilient) point-and-shoot.  I'll have to make due, but it's going to bug me.  Dad was saying it'll help me be more creative in my photos, and in the past people have told me that I need to see less through my lens and more through my eyes (I'll admit; I do have a problem there), but I can't wait until I have my 18mm length back.

Not to mention how hard it is to leave Cedric alone at home for any length of time when I haven't seen him for four months.

Overall, I've had a pretty good past week, a great Christmas weekend so far (including getting new luggage!), and am very much looking forward to this trip!  

Also, it is officially five minutes past midnight and therefore December 25th.  Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays/I hope the first few days of winter are going great to everyone!

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