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Sunday, March 17, 2013

All Quiet on the Blogging Front

Things have been a little quiet lately. Not in real life, mind you, where the past week has been a blur of citizenship interviews and oaths, passport and visa applications, medical examinations and the ongoing struggles with studies of Mandarin Chinese. But in my little corner of the blogosphere, there hasn't been much to write about. Mainly that's because in my free time I haven't done much since banging up my elbow and knee on Old Rag Mountain last month. I certainly haven't been able to do any serious hiking since then, and instead of walking around different parts of Washington, D.C., we've been spending our weekends between either going to stores or parks, or just being lazy at home. Hopefully, now that I'm feeling much better, I can getting back into a few of the old habits, and thus have a few pictures to post here.

Today wasn't a terribly exciting one, but at least my daughter and I did get out of the apartment for a little while. Seeing as my friends Jeff and Barbara will be visiting us at the end of this month, and how that will entail picking them up at Union Station in Alexandria as they arrive by train from New York, I decided to use the afternoon to plot the best route between FSI and the station. Amber came along and kept herself busy on the station platforms. In wasn't long before a southbound Amtrak train rolled in...:

...followed not long after by a northbound one:

Mission accomplished (as in I now know how to get there), we drove across the road and up the hill to the George Washington Masonic National Memorial. Although it was after closing time and rain had started to fall, it was still fun to walk around the tower and take in the view from atop Shooter's Hill. With all the things we have to do between now and our scheduled departure for Shanghai 上海 in the middle of next month, the Washington Memorial will probably have to wait until we get back in two years' time. Unless, of course, I fail my exit exam and/or I need an operation on my knee, in which case...

The memorial stands 333 feet (101 meters) high

The view looking towards Old Town Alexandria, as well as the Metro and train stations, from the steps of the memorial.

If the weather cooperates tomorrow, I'm planning on testing out the knee with a light hike somewhere in Maryland. On Monday, I meet with an orthopedist to go over the results of the MRI I had done last Wednesday, and find out whether surgery might be needed on what has turned out to be an arthritic knee. Speaking of the MRI exam, while I was lying there on the table listening to the sounds emitted by the machine, I was reminded of those industrial music tracks I used to hear in the wee hours of the morning on KDVS. In particular, I wondered if anyone had been inspired by these sounds to mix them into something musical. YouTube has answered that question.

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