Thursday, January 10, 2008

What's a swell dame like you doing in a dump like this?

It's good to be back. All vacations should be this good. I went away all unraveled and came back knitted up with new energy, committed to work.

I saw art, lots of art. The Hopper exhibit was everything I expected and more.

We walked up to the Renwick when he found out the Corcoran is closed on Tuesdays. Really. Tuesdays. What are they, barbers? Who closes on Tuesday.

The Renwick was a wonderful surprise. Every corner you turn reveals something strikingly beautiful and odd. The main exhibit right now are quilts from the 19th century, some so full of color that you wonder what sort of prairie grass those Nebraska pioneers were smoking.

The painting up there is from the Catlin collection, a guy who wandered west in the mid-1800's and painted portraits of Indians and the landscape. Overwhelmingly beautiful.

We wandered off the street into a little Chinese restaurant. That's the building up there. We saw as we were leaving that it was Mary Surratt's house, the place where the plot to kill Lincoln was cooked up. Now all they cook are great noodles and kung pao. No one was plotting assassinations that we heard.

We took a walk down U Street, site of a few scenes in this WIP I've been working on for the past three years. That's the world famous Ben's Chili Bowl up there, next to the Lincoln Theater. We did not eat chili being full of Assassination Chinese, but we did meet a man who knew everything there is to know about the neighborhood and was very generous with his knowledge. Thank you, sir.

We drove past the new WWII monument on the mall. I'm not the first one to say this, but the monument, along with all the heightened security around town (papers, please) makes me want to dot my i's with an umlaut.

Finally, we went to the Principle Gallery in Alexandria and I'm thinking of buying this painting by Brian Martin. What do you think? I like it, I'm just not sure I can convince Jenny that we need more art and less money.

I met a fellow blogger who actually admitted to reading The Planet, or maybe she was just humoring me, I don't know. But, Chancy, if you're out there, welcome.

So, that's my vacation slide show. I completely ignored the news, politics, all that crap. And damn, it felt good.

But it's also good to be back.


chandler said...

No, no, I really do read it. I am glad that you are back to writing, but it was a huge treat to meet you in person!

norby said...

I really like the painting, I say go for it. How often do you really find a painting that you like enough to want to have less money for?

Of course, I don't have any money, so, it's easy for me to talk.

Karen Olson said...

Welcome back, David.

How could you escape politics in D.C.?

Envious of your visit to the Hopper exhibit.

pattinase (abbott) said...

We were there the week before and saw the quilts (loved the comprehensive one of Nebraska), the impressionist seascapes at the Phillips and Jeremy Blakes' last exhibit at the Corcoran.
Always fun to visit.

Beneath the Carolina Moon said...

I haven't been to DC since 1990. Thanks for the reminder that there is a vibrant city there and it isn't entirely populated with weasels.