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Locked down but not out in Italy

Singing from the balconies! One nice thing about this crisis ... solidarity! “Guess you’re not living like a tourist anymore,” was the funny, truthful and somewhat gut-wrenching message of a friend the day the lockdown in Italy began. Today is day 6. My beloved Italia has been hit hard with the COVID19 epidemic. With the second largest elderly population in the world, the epidemic has meant a disproportionate amount of deaths in the country. So though I haven’t been worried about contracting it myself, this isn’t about me or someone like me who, if contracted it would probably have a sucky couple of weeks and then recover. It is about if someone like me contracted it and then spread it to a person with a complicated health history or an elderly person with a weakened immune system. Eerily orderly: Lines for the grocery store, each person one meter apart In a country with no concept (and no physical room really) for personal space, and in a city with reproachable hygie

Wanderlust meets D.C.

Although I don't kiss and tell, I suppose I owe you details about the date that I mentioned.

Here are some things D.C. and I have done together:

Visiting Benin, Serbia, Sri Lanka and Indonesia, among other fascinating countries...

DC's Passport day let me explore the embassies of a ton of foreign countries. It was totally up my ally! There was even an official paper to collect passport stamps. It reminded me of my Around the World party, where I created a similar contraption to capture all the different drinks available at the party.

Meeting a fully-uniformed Bobby...

Going to the U.K., Italy, Ireland, Greece... well, their foreign embassies at least. Another Passport day, European countries this time. I can't really get enough.

Hearing Jovanotti sing in person...

A Jovanotti concert at the 9:30 club. Jovanotti is an Italian Rapper/Pop icon. He can perhaps be compared to Eminem (a non-vulgar version) in that he is not to everyone's liking, but he is certainly well known.

Seeing overly tall French women known as "Les Marquises"...

Part of a street performer's festival at the French Embassy.

Eating falafel and hummus at an International Bazaar

The Muslim Women's Association put on this fantastic Street Bazaar with amazing food, beautiful clothing and great jewelry.

Drinks at Mie N Yu in Georgetown

A pan-Asian-Middle Eastern lounge and restaurant.

Savory Crepe Dinner at Cafe Napoleon

Just like being in a Parisian Cafe!

Mid-day Dessert at Georgetown Cupcake

(Of the Lava Fudge variety!)

If you haven't noticed a pattern, perhaps I should admit that yes, most of these aren't what you think of when you think of D.C. In fact, save the cupcake, all of these things are fairly foreign, or at least foreign influenced. I can assure all loyal D.C. residents that I do intend to do the traditional D.C. sites as well (most of which, shamefully, I have not done... even having grown up nearby).

However, that is what I am enjoying about D.C. When I feel like being in this city, I can walk in front of the White House or go for a stroll on the National Mall. When I get those inevitable feelings of wanderlust, I can humor myself and pretend to be in any variety of countries. Short of living in Disney's Epcot Center, I don't think there are many places that can cater quite as well to my delusions of travel.