Monday, July 12, 2010

The Friends We Choose

Life is partly what we make it, and partly what it is made by the friends we choose. ~Tennessee Williams

I believe in surrounding myself with amazing people, both online and off. I’ve been incredibly fortunate in the friendship department. My friends are beautiful souls with open hearts; loving individuals that remind me to embrace life, help quash my fears, and just overall enrich my life in ways I can’t properly express.

This weekend, I traveled to Washington, DC for some long overdue bonding time with a few extraordinary people, people whom I consider to be among my inner circle of friends but prior to this trip had never met face to face. With a flurry of planning both by email and twitter, plans were made, times were scheduled, and ideas of what to do carved out.

As I was sitting on a metro into the city late Friday evening, my stomach was a flutter with nervous butterflies and a steady stream of anxious thoughts running through my head. However, that all disappeared the moment I stepped off the escalator from the metro and saw a handful of bloggers waving excitedly and yelling my name. I literally ran across the street without looking frogger style (remembering halfway across that in big cities people use lights and crosswalks for a reason) and immediately set out to finally hug a dear friend who lives in DC, a faraway friend who was my reason for making the trip, and a fabulous friend who organized a big meet up for all of us bloggers randomly in the area. After we proceeded into the bar shots and beers were had, conversations commenced, and new friends were made. The next few hours flew by with laughs, discussions, more introductions and more hugs. It was a bit of a whirlwind experience that left me feeling energized and eagerly anticipating the next day’s adventures.

Saturday’s plans were to include visiting various monuments but Mother Nature had other plans and quite honestly, the day couldn’t have been better. After awaking to rain, a last minute changing of plans, big hugs and a few failed but humorous attempts at hailing a cab, Becky and I found ourselves in Georgetown. Within minutes of arriving we settled into a table at Furin's with Nora and her mom for brunch. The food was great, the conversation excellent, and the company even better than that. I’m quite sure I could have happily spent all day just sitting there talking and enjoying the time but there were bookstores beckoning us. The rest of our time together included wandering the cobblestone sidewalks of Georgetown, strolling through a residential section taking in the sights, lounging around Nora’s hotel, an impromptu eyeliner lesson and ended with tight hugs and promises to see each other again soon.

Photo by Becky

Becky and I headed back to Old Town Alexandria for dinner and some great conversation with Ally (and a few funny self takes in which I proceeded to cut one or more of us out of the shot). The day ended much too quickly for my liking and I ended up back at my stepsisters house thoroughly exhausted but confident in the knowledge that I have some of the most amazing people in my life.

Photo by Becky

This weekend came at a time when I needed a change of pace, even if only for a few days. My trip to DC reminded me that life with all of its joys and frustrations is breathtakingly beautiful, especially when surrounded by the wonderful people I'm lucky enough to call my friends who routinely make my life better on a multitude of levels.

To see a video of the weekend, pop on over to Becky's blog! HUGE THANKS to LivitLuvit for organizing the shenanigans on Friday night.

I'm also guest posting on Darcie's blog Traveling This Path.