Thirteen Things Thursday

This week's Thursday Thirteen has a theme - Washington, D.C., our nation's capital. Why, you ask? Because I am headed there this evening, so it is very much on my mind.

1) I visited DC for the first time in the Spring 0f 2001. My ex and I had just moved to North Carolina and decided to take a trip before I started my first full time job. We chose DC. I have been in love with the place ever since.

2) My second visit to DC was only six months later, about three weeks after the September 11th attacks. My ex, the dog and myself stayed in the Washington Hilton (where they filmed this season's Top Chef) for two days while I did the finishing touches on an event being held at the South African Embassy. My dog had nearly been killed by the two cats a week earlier when they knocked a bottle of Advil onto the floor and she ate the entire contents of said bottle. We were in DC, and she was peeing blood. Awesome. Not.

3) I worked for a leadership development program for six years at Duke. Through that program, I had the extremely awesome opportunity to travel back and forth to Cape Town, South Africa ten times. It was through that program that I met some of the most amazing and strongest women I have ever known in my life. It is some of those women I am going to go visit this weekend! YAY!

4) Judy, one of the ladies I will be spending time with this weekend, and I met when she was a fellow in the leadership program. Our bonding evening came when I was able to get us in the back door of a very popular South African jazz venue, Manenberg's (which is now closed), to see Ali Farka Toure perform for a group of about 200 people.

5) That same evening, I danced with Miriam Makeba on the dance floor. The woman had some energy!

6) I miss South Africa terribly. I haven't been back since 2007. I still communicate with several friends I have there, but I haven't been back to the country for over 3 years. I'll have to change that soon.

7) Something tells me there will be lots of South Africa story swapping this evening. Judy had a run in with a certain Will Smith at a museum in Johannesburg back in 2007!

8) I have been battling a cold all damn week. Luckily, it has started to fade. That means I may actually be able to get in a nice run on Saturday while Judy is at poetry class! I've mapped out a route on a beautiful trail in Bethesda for a 6.5 mile jaunt. The weather looks to be lovely.

9) Did you know that Rahm Emanuel is a triathlete?? (I have a political crush on Rahm)

10) I've never been inside the White House. I would like to change that at some point.

11) My dream job is to be Chief of Staff for a President, but I would prefer it be a 9-5 job. Oh well, some things were not meant to be.

12) I'm flying back to Columbus early on Monday morning and coming directly to work. This could either be an awesome or a terrible idea.

13) I am done with this list. Sweet.

To anyone racing this weekend, good luck! My BFF Lauren is running a 30K trail run this weekend in Winston-Salem, NC - woo hoo! good luck, dear! My buddy Elizabeth is racing in the Nationals competition for olympic length tri this weekend, so best of luck to her!!!!! I will catch you all next week - maybe some mobile blogging if I see anything cool.

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