The (not so) triumphant return

17 01 2009

The last time I arrived in DC the city was also gearing up for an inauguration, but the similarities pretty much end there.

It was late 2004, and I pulled into the District fresh off Sen. Tom Daschle’s losing re-election campaign in South Dakota with all of my worldly possessions crammed into my dingy little Sentra. I was 22 and broke, with no job and no prospects, but I had found an apartment—a rowhouse with barred windows and unreliable plumbing at 6th and G NE that I shared with my college roommate and somebody else we’d gone to school with.

Nobody was hiring Democrats then. The GOP had strong majorities in both the House and the Senate, and Dubya had just defeated wooden dildo John Kerry to win another four years in the White House. Dems had so little political currency then that you couldn’t even get an interview in the District with names like Daschle and Edwards on your resume.

So, I did what any enterprising young lady would do in my situation–I got a job as a sales clerk at Victoria’s Secret in Union Station, helping Senate staffers whose jobs I desperately wanted figure out if we had the black one in their cup size, and biting my tongue to avoid telling the more amply-built women from the neighborhoods north and east of us who asked if we carried anything in 44-GGG that for the kind of support they were looking for they’d probably have more luck at Home Depot than Victoria’s Secret.

Now it’s 2009, and I’m arriving in DC in a decidedly different style. I still have the Sentra, bless it’s little heart, but it’s parked behind my house in Santa Monica and I’m on a plane, flying in to DCA to attend Barack Obama’s Inauguration as the 44th President of the United States. I’m a million miles away from where I was in 2004, and yet I’m coming back to the exact same place.

I’m a little bit apprehensive that once I get off the plane I’ll realize I made a huge mistake leaving DC. The city certainly feels a lot different when your party controls the House, Senate and White House and you’re in a position financially to rent an apartment where water doesn’t come pouring through the bathroom ceiling every time it rains. On the other hand, the weather is still crap, everyone still works way too hard, and Georgetown is still full of collar-popping douchbags and overpriced, watery martinis.

I have a wonderful life in LA, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. But coming back to DC in another year, for another inauguration, it’s hard not to wonder what might have been.

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6 responses

17 01 2009
readergirl

i’m willing to bet you might miss it, but that doesn’t mean you aren’t in the right place, currently!

18 01 2009
John in CA

With your political resume, have you considered signing up to work on Harry Reid’s 2010 reelection campaign? Nevada is close to Ca. The weather’s good. And you’d be doing Republicans a big favor.

18 01 2009
Donna Cook

we all wonder what might have been if the Democrats dominated in DC 2004 . Enjoy your visit! Wish we were there!

18 01 2009
Leigh

Don’t know you at all, but this post means a lot to me. I attended Bush 41 Inauguration as a new & young Hill staffer for a member from Louisiana. I attended simply because I could and because it was history, not because I was excited about his presidency. Nonetheless, it was interesting. However, I also wish I could have been there when a Democrat was in office. Who knows where’d I be now? … Inconsequential, but NOW, I live in Los Angeles, too, working in the film business (just another job in entertainment). AND, preparing to relocate to New Orleans (will keep L.A. home, tho). … Best wishes with your future and I look forward to reading your future posts.

21 01 2009
You’ll get your Inauguration photos when I’m good and ready « U R B Z E N

[…] not be today. In the meantime, you can catch up on Urbzen’s thrilling Inauguration coverage here, here and here. Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Here we go!“if at all” […]

24 01 2009
GirlPie

I’m glad we’ve got you here, it keeps your eyes clear about what’s going on back there. Thanks for the recollection, seems like it’s nicer to visit as you did.

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