Am hob nobbing with senators, representatives, and their aides in the other Washington. Or rather, my friend Maria is talking to them and I periodically smile when they make eye contact. As the morning progresses, must admit. It is rather fatiguing - all this head shaking, hand shaking and smiling.
Everything is quite grand. The buildings are big and spread out. The blocks are long. It is noon and there is an hour and a half before the next meeting. Surely enough time to go back to the hotel which is just two blocks away from the Capital building.
My friend Liz comes along. This is good because didn't pay attention when we walked to the Capital earlier in the morning. Actually to be fair, usually don't pay attention to small matters like knowing where am going. So happy that Liz will lead the way.
We leave the cavernous climate controlled building and are hit with a sunny 90 degree blast of steam. Take off jacket. Put on aviators. Which way I say, and she points - that a way. Liz is a lovely, confident, composed authorative woman who knows what she's talking about. We go that a way. For block after blasted long block. Stop take a look at a map posted on a light pole. Oh definitely we go this way she points. Are you sure? Oh yes she says. So we make a turn and keep walking. For block after blasted long block. Am becoming adorned with little pearls of sweat. Finally, we ask a person with a badge - which way. He points in exactly the opposite direction. We will never be able to make it all the way to the hotel and back in time.
So we march on. Because surely there must be some place nearby where we can grab a meal. Liz fixates on a hot dog stand. Hello - can't eat that. We stop another person and he tells us to go in the opposite direction where we will find places to eat. Sure enough. We find a nice little deli. Eat. Then head back. Get to a junction. Which way. Liz says - that a way and I start following her for about a block when realize: what are the chances that she is right.
Find another person with a badge. Oh yeah. We are going in exactly the opposite direction again. Turn around and don't listen to another opinion Liz gives about where we are for the rest of the day. The bad part of this is that Liz had us walking and sweating outside about ten times longer than needed. The good part - finally met someone who is WAY more direction challenged than I.