Friday, June 08, 2007

Washington DC

We left Wednesday night to begin my Continuing Education time. We're still traveling, I'm eventually headed for the Smoky Mountains to retreat with three other seminary friends, Misha and the girls will stay in Richmond with her family while I drive on to Western North Carolina.

Today we are in Washington DC participating in an ELCA conference advocating for a moral and just Farm Bill - the law, re-written every five years, that has the most impact on food stamps, emergency food pantries, and other domestic anti-hunger legislation. We're juggling child care (I'm back in the dorm room at American University where we slept last night with Bekah napping and Charis and I hanging out listening to music and watching movies) so we both can participate in the conference - Misha in her professional capacity as an advocate, and me as a church pastor.

For more information about the conference and the Farm Bill and Bread for the World, click here.

Yesterday, we arrived earlier in DC than we'd planned so we had time to Metro down to the Mall to visit some of the Smithsonians (Charis chose Air and Space, which was my top vote, also). We pushed a stroller and herded a toddler through the Mall, with views of the monuments and the Capitol. We navigated buses and the subway through a city that we each have great memories of: I spent three summers here working as a journalist and Misha began her advocacy work with her first job out of college at the National Head Start Association. We even have memories of the dorm we slept in last night: my first summer here, when we had started dating, I lived in this building and we met here once or twice to go out into the city for a date (most of the museums here are priced for college students: free).

This city represents so many things to me: memories of courting Misha, my brief career in journalism (I covered the Supreme Court and went to White House press briefings a few times), representative government by the people and for the people. I'm thrilled to be here again, even if for a day, and glad to share it with my girls. They are too young to know it now, but I hope to instill in them, as my Dad did for me, a respect for citizenship.


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