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Clarissa 29 Brighton UK. Atheist asexual cynic. Loves green. Hates kids.
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USA travelog
Wed, Jul 26 2006 @ 03:23   //   Category: Life & Me   //   5 comments

Ok I'm gonna try to write that travelog now. I've spent all day looking at the pics anyway so I might as well add the words. Might keep it short tho [ok scrap that, this ain't gonna be short]. Remember, pics for illustration purposes are here.

So. I got to the US on the 13th. It was my first flight on an American airline (not actually American Airlines tho, but NWA) and I liked it. I had a very fun seat neighbour, she was from around Detroit and we started bitching the minute I sat down. I do not know her name, tho I know many things about her life.

I got asked scary questions at immigration, like how I knew Jimmy (I gave his address as residence) and I said "the friend of a friend" cuz I figured if I said "I know him from the Internet" they might send me back. *lol* Also what his job is. Wtf is that to them?

Detroit airport has a Motown store. That was kinda cool. It also has a tram inside the terminal building, which I had to try of course, just for the fun of it, tho I had no need to.

Um yeah, then on to DC where I found a Charlie :x at the luggage belt. It was midnight and it was very very very hot. We drove to Jimmy's place and got only slightly lost but found our way out of it on our own. Jimmy was very impressed. :-)

Jimmy's place is very fun. We found a WLAN called thomas, how fun, and one with a weird name like 5B545302 which was the one I used mostly. Ja. We stayed up very late, in fact didn't sleep much at all but mostly talked and stuff. Jimmy went to bed at some point tho.

Jimmy and Charlie together are very cute. They're obviously cute on their own too, but in combination they're cute in a very special way. Both being American and stuff... and they'd never met before (tho they had been talking about it - I wasn't sure if I wanted to allow it back then, funny really considering I then dragged Charlie to Jimmy's place for almost a week hehe), but anyway they got on really well and had stuff to talk about and it made me happy listening to them. :x Like a lot of the stuff I couldn't follow/relate to cuz it was US stuff, so I just listened and loved. :-)

Ok. So the next day (Friday morning) the first thing on our schedule was the Greek embassy, Charlie wanting citizenship and all. We took a long time getting into DC cuz we spent ages at the place we parked the car (Ballston - we later found out it was the wrong metro stop, but it was the one the site suggested!), eating, making photocopies, getting lost, going back to the car and whatnot else. It was fun tho. :))

Ja. The embassy was both good and bad, good cuz Charlie didn't get a "no", but bad cuz there's more tedious document-collecting involved. Ever heard of an apostille? *hehe* Neither had we. Anyway. We found the Lux embassy on our way (cf pics) and Charlie tried to get me to go in there to ask some irrelevant question, just for the fun of it. We settled on "do you allow dual citizenship" (tho we know they don't)... however sadly *ahem* you can only see them by appointment and I managed to discourage Charlie from calling them to make an appointment right then and there. :))

Ok so after that we did supertouristy stuff. It was very hot. The pics will mainly speak for themselves here. We had a nice walk around that lake thing and stuff. The Holocaust museum was a bit weird and confusing. Um yeah. Then we met up with Jimmy and it took us ages to find somewhere to go for a drink. We ended up at Starbucks.

Then we were tired and went home, where we hung about doing nothing in particular for a while, then we went to a Thai restaurant, then back home for more hanging out, then Jimmy went to bed at some point, and we went to bed much later (can you see a pattern emerging here? lol).

Ok, this takes us to Saturday, which is Jimmy's day off. Guess what we did? Exactly nothing! :D Well for most of the day anyway. We took green perfection pics and stuff. My guys were online much and stuff and talked about US stuff... I had a bit of a downer in the afternoon, as exemplified here... we ended up going into DC again and I mainly slept and... wished I was asleep. *lol* It got better tho and as usual Charlie and I stayed up talking most of the night again.

The 16th was very hot. So we didn't leave the flat all day. Well I went foodshopping at some point. Poor Jimmy had to work, I do not envy him, but I guess he's used to it. Ja, then we went to see Pink, we did not get lost, we found a great parking spot, we had fun. Until I got scary stomach cramps and dizziness and was scared I'd caught a bug much like when I was in Mainz and would faint much like I had in Mainz. So we sat down... it got better in the end tho and tho I was feeling queasy I didn't pass out and it was very fun.

Then we went home and, er, stayed up late talking again. Mhm. On the 17th (Monday) we were going to NYC. We got up very late cuz of staying up very late and very tired Charlie. Then we left. The trip was good mostly, I drove for about... half of it? We got a bit lost in New Jersey (where we parked, close to where Charlie used to live, to get the train into NYC) but found it in the end.

Ja, once we were in NYC we went to Brooklyn to see Charlie's old college. We sneaked onto campus and he showed me stuff and it was very fun, and then we had pizza at that place that he used to have pizza at, and then we got back to the subway... and waited and waited and waited for like almost an hour, and then finally we were told a train was stuck somewhere, whatever, here's your fare refunded now you can see how you get back to Manhattan. :)) We ended up sharing a big cab with 2 girls who were going out (they sorted the cab) and 2 Frenchies (father and son) who we chatted to in French, much to Charlie's delight. They were rather fun actually, the father an artist who was in NYC for the summer.

Then we did some more walking around, to Times Square, Grand Central (cf pics), then went back to the hotel and stayed up til 5am chatting. :)) :wh

Yeah then on the 18th we started by going to Starbucks and looking for Pink tickets... then up to Central Park to see the place Charlie's parents used to live at. Then we spent one hour or so at Barnes & Noble. I decided to read the PostSecret book instead of buying it, and Charlie read Found magazine book, which was hilarious, esp. this one bit I was gonna take a photo of but we forgot. :-(

Um ok next my notes say "walk back down via pizza place and Times Sq" but I can't remember much of that. I think I do remember the Swatch store tho. We then took the subway down to Canal Street and walked back up, doing nothing in particular. We stayed in the room for a while, then went out again in search of alcohol. Then we fell asleep before we could drink most of it. :))

Next day... we stayed in late, I ended up going to Starbucks for onlineness on my own. And I had a reply from Pink ticket seller and got very excited but you can read all about that here. Yeah then we went to Harlem for the Royal Tenenbaums house... we stayed there for ages because we couldn't decide what to do next. *lol* In the end we went to South Street seaport which was mainly shopping, and fun. We found skinny bracelets and postcards, and then green underwear at Gap.

Theeeen it was P!nk time again. Again, details are in this entry. Basically the concert was really amazing. I was very happy. Ok I was very happy during pretty much all of that trip anyway. :)) But this was even more special than special. Doing crazy things is great. :D Then we stayed up late talking and drinking again etc.

On the 20th we moved to the new hotel which I'd booked the day before, and cuz we were so excited we stayed in way too long and annoyed Lo and daniel with our faecal jokes... as mentioned previously. Finally we dragged ourselves away from geekness and went to Staten Island. See, last year when I went with daniel they had this leaflet at the ferry about things to do, and it all sounded hella exciting, but it was a Monday so was all closed. So I figured we could do it this year.

But there was no leaflet. :| So we had no fucking idea what to do. So we went to New Dorp cuz that was where some of Charlie's ancestors settled centuries ago and it seemed as good a destination as any. :)) But it was boring so we went back... there was a crazy lady on the platform talking to herself so that was entertaining at least.

That was more or less it for the day, we enjoyed more geekdom, went for dinner at a Japanese place, walked around 2nd Avenue for a while, the end. I think we fell asleep at a fairly reasonable time.

Next day was New Jersey day. We had to go renew the parking ticket, and so we decided to drive to Maplewood so Charlie could show me his old neighbourhood. He was very excited and very cute! So we saw his old house, lots of his friends' houses, his school, the street Lauryn Hill lives in (!! I wanted to kiss the ground but Charlie didn't stop. I think he didn't take me seriously when I said it lol), and we had pizza at the best pizza place in the world - which was actually very nice!!

Then we drove back to Summit (the parking town)... or we tried to. Instead we got amazingly lost... in the pouring rain. Well I was kinda asleep for the first half cuz tired. In the end we got a cool rainbow map and found our way back. Which was kinda fun actually. Lost in New Jersey. :-)

Er. Yeah. I didn't update my notes after this and my memory fails me, so I don't remember what we did that night. [edit after consulting with Charlie - we went for very late night dinner at a diner on 2nd Ave after a long walk all the way to 5th Ave lol.] The next morning we had to check out. That was sad. Goodbye geekdom. We went to St Patrick's, had breakfast, then went to the Lower East Side to go to the Tenement Museum and to Teany, cuz this was what we'd planned to do with Jimmy but Jimmy was too tired to join us. But we yet again decided against Tenement museum cuz the guided tour would've finished too late. Teany was fun tho.

Then back to the hotel to collect the luggage. We decided we wanted the Pink CD for our drive back, so we had to download the songs from my webspace... so once we'd collected our luggage from the bellman we went to a random bathroom in the hotel and used their wireless while sitting on the bog. :)) We found this very amusing, tho it was also very hot cuz their bathrooms don't have A/C. We didn't get caught. We were proud. (meh I miss Charlie :(()

Then back to Summit to collect the car, and back to Maplewood for one last pizza feast at Roman Gourmet. =P~ We did not get lost... just yet. We did a little later, and it was very scary cuz it was in some dodgy area and I was burning CDs so had Tommy on my lap (hello, come and steal my laptop lol) and also I hadn't been paying attention as usual, so when Charlie said "did you see the sign that said where to go" etc I was like "um, no, I didn't see nuthin." :)) :|

Buuuut we (he) managed in the end. And then it got dark and horrible rainstorms and I got very scared cuz I hate driving in the dark and in the rain and the two together are like my worst nightmare. Luckily he didn't make me drive, but I felt bad cuz he had to, and I was scared shitless even tho I wasn't the one who had to deal with it. :| Some really cool lightning bolts tho.

But then it got better and I drove for the rest of the trip, and it was ok despite some rain, and we found Jimmy's place again, tho with a small detour as usual. But I know Falls Church really well now. We can move there. :D

Sunday was our last day. I wasn't feeling so good Sunday. I had a crying fit on Saturday night, and Sunday morning was general mehness and wahness. Charlie was sleeping/tired and I was mehing and wahing lol. But once Charlie had got up he dragged me out and that was good, cuz we had a lof ot fun in the end and saw the White House and stuff, and didn't just sit at home moping about.

So we went to see that church that Falls Church is named after, it was kinda unexciting but fun all the same, we sneaked about and stuff. Theeen the White House, and then we went to Georgetown, which was far to walk but very pretty and we're gonna buy a house there. :-)

That was more or less it actually. Back home via Safeway to get Goldfish for Alisdair, then the usual late night hanging about. For one last time. *sigh*

Monday morning we said goodbye to Jimmy, then packed. *sigh* Charlie drove me to the airport and I, um, left. *sigh*

The trip home was mainly sleeping. Lol I managed to drop my driving license at the check in desk and someone came running after me after I'd been through security and stuff... cute. I was in business class from Dulles to Minneapolis, but this was unexciting cuz short haul. In Minneapolis I was meant to meet Kal but he had somehow forgotten that he had work... or something. So he wouldn't have made it on time or it would've been very stressful and we decided to drop it, tho it was sad.

There was a scary hailstorm warning and they told us to stay away from doors & windows, however planes were still taking off. Weird shit. But we were a bit delayed because of it.

US airports hate me. On my way in I tried to call Charlie from a payphone, it didn't fucking want my card, so I tried with coins, didn't like that either (ok that was cuz I got the phone number format wrong) so I ended up calling him from my Lux SIM. In Minneapolis I tried again - didn't like either of my credit cards tho said it accepted VISA. Tried to buy a prepaid card, didn't like my fucking $20 bills (WTF?!?!). Tried to go online with my new TMobile hotspot account, didn't recognize my login/password (aargh!), so eventually called both Kal and Charlie from my Lux mobile again. 8-| But then I found a "proper" public phone with a number so Charlie called me back on that. Still tho. Fuckers.

Yeah. Slept on the plane again, managed to lose my Zen while asleep, and the guy behind me tapped me on the shoulder when I finally woke up to return it to me. How cute. Also there was no on board entertainment on that flight - weird. I mean I wasn't fussed cuz sleeping, but weird all the same.

Got back, was hot, was sad, was weird. Am here. Must go. Call Charlie.
Everyone hates me cuz of this trip. Is sad to be back but was most amazing thing to go. Would do it again right now. Even if it cost twice as much. Now hang on...

Apparently I have to get a job now. Oh I dunno about that one yet. :|

People say...

Super cool!! After looking at all the pictures, I am so jealous. I wanna go back to New York. or better yet live there. oh well... hope you recover from the shock of coming back.

Posted by: Anne on Wed July 26, 2006 at 9:56

Thanks. Am working on it.
And yeah I wanna live there too.

Posted by: Clarissa on Wed July 26, 2006 at 10:22

@ the embassy story.

Posted by: stagiaire on Wed July 26, 2006 at 13:56

BTW you look good on those pictures at which you said you hated yourself.

The Stone House thing is fun. In the USA it's so extraordinary to live in stone houses that they put up memorials for stone houses.

Posted by: stagiaire on Wed July 26, 2006 at 14:04

and thanks tho I don't

Posted by: Clarissa on Wed July 26, 2006 at 14:44