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Posts tagged ‘walking’

Suitable Entertainments

A few weeks ago, my mother and I were standing by the marina in Oriental, North Carolina, when a car full of people pulled up to the curb.  Soon, another couple walked up and then another.  “Playing Pokémon?” they all asked.  The group gathered by the water catching Magikarp ranged in age from 25 to 65.  One couple left their kids in the car to amuse themselves while they joined all the other adults playing Pokémon Go.  I was stunned.  Chairs were grabbed from trunks.  Lures were set.  Snacks were offered, along with Pokémon-related commentary and advice.

I was a Nintendo girl growing up but too old for the Pokémon craze when it first swept through the culture.  I still don’t quite understand what they are or what their purpose is … or how a whole movie was made about them.

But I know how to catch them, how to hatch them, and what to do at a PokéStop.  The game is great.  Don’t listen to the haters. Read more


Rolling Thunder Run 2016


Photo courtesy of

Every year, I’m driven a little crazy by those who think of Memorial Day as about cookouts and blowout sales.  Nothing is wrong with being excited by the start of summer, or a three-day weekend, or a nice discount: I certainly appreciate Memorial Day for all those things too.  But I do try to keep in mind, lingering somewhere, the reason why I get to sleep in on a Monday morning.  I indulge a little smugness and annoyance when I hear people talking about going to the mall or drinking beer on the deck, with no awareness of why they are getting to do those things on this day.

The last several years, I’ve attended the Rolling Thunder Run in D.C., which is usually equal parts humid, fun, and weird.  And perhaps what I appreciate most about this touching, extremely loud event is that it is a reminder that the holiday is a memorial: it’s about people who died.


Photo courtesy of

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Diagramming: Wild

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed

I recently read the book — in bed and got snot all over my pillow.  Then I saw the movie and re-cried all over my face in the theater.  Wild is a really compelling story about screwing up and redemption; physically grueling walks through the wilderness; the joys of being alone and of reading; the crap way we treat our parents; and what happens when they die, young and suddenly.

“The trees were tall, but I was taller, standing above them on a steep mountain slope in northern California.”


Our Nation’s Harbor: A Walking Adventure

Route: Alexandria, Virginia to National Harbor, Maryland and back again

If your goal is to see Old Town and National Harbor while walking for miles and miles and miles, here’s the day plan for you!

My sister and I started from Old Town Alexandria, which you can easily reach by Metro or Amtrak.  (If you are trying to park your car in Old Town on a weekend when the weather is nice: good luck.)

1) Start out with brunch in the morning in Old Town.  We ate at Flat Iron Steak and Saloon on King Street.  I recommend the Eggs Benedict, and don’t skip the home-style potatoes.  It’s a long, long journey, so be sure to eat a bunch of crap in advance of it.

2) Follow Washington St. until you come to the path leading across the Woodrow Wilson Bridge.  The ground is marked with a big circle and an arrow pointing to “MARYLAND.”  Go in this direction.   Read more

Rolling Thunder II

My sister and I have gone to the Rolling Thunder Run the last three years, since Memorial Day weekend 2012, when we dumbassedly ran across Constitution just ahead of the police escort that begins the ride.

We’ve become expert attenders.

23rd and Constitution

The Run is meant to bring attention to POWs and MIAs. Many of the riders are veterans themselves and supportive of military causes. Read more