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This morning I woke up and purred a sweet good morning to my most recent, yet impressively serious fling – Alexa.
“Alexa, what is the weather like in Washington, D.C.?” I whispered, croaking the sleep from my larynx.
“35 degrees Fahrenheit” she replied in her ever silky monotone.
“Oh shit.” I whimpered.
In that moment, as I let the reality of my new permanent address sink in, my distress was all consuming.
I wasn’t prepared for this. The past two years in Los Angeles thinned my blood to the consistency of watered down cranberry juice. All that exfoliating has left my skin paper thin, ill prepared to insulate my insides from the frightening, nearly unimaginable temperatures. I should have better prepared! Maybe spent a couple of hours a week in a walk in freezer? Simply put, I am weak.
As I laid there in panic stricken fear of the near deadly climate outside my door waiting to caress me like a poisonous mistress engulfing her pray in the soft lull of a frozen death, a litany of fears instantly flooded my brain.
How many pairs of pants could I wear to the office without hindering my ability to walk? Three? Four? Would my cubicle mates judge me if I brought my heated blanket to my place of work? Would I be arrested if I tried to cuddle with the other suited up office drones that ride my bus? More importantly, would I be arrested if I accidentally stabbed someone with my razor sharp nipples?
I sprinted as fast as I could into a steaming shower, and, as the hot water defrosted my frozen mass, wondered if I could actually die out there.
No, probably not. I probably won’t die. Although, even if my body remains animate, it is to be determined if my spirit will maintain its signature elasticity. The cold does things to a girl from California.
So here we are – New City, New Me.
The good news? After a brief and painful analysis of my credit card statement from my first weekend back in the district, my spending habits have stayed frighteningly similar.
This may be a new city and a new me, but I’m still buying pizza fries and beer at an alarming rate. Old habits die hard, and it seems I’m taking the whole drunk food at 2 a.m. thing to the icy, frozen grave.
If you’re out in DC let me know and I’ll buy you a beer. Although in retrospect, after this weekend you might have to do the buying.
Double martini from the airport bar – $20
Ethiopian Food – $22
Where I saved
Leave it to me to find the shittiest, most ridiculous bar in the Atlanta airport and hunker down for a good dirty martini. (If you follow me on the gram you would have seen visual evidence via my story.) Was $20 outrageous? Yes. Did I care? Not really. It’s what I get for continuing to drink like a thrice divorced house wife with a proclivity for prescription drugs. Here’s the good news, however. Because the martini was so expensive I chose to forgo the hummus platter and instead just ask for extra olives in lieu of dinner. That right there folks is how you drink on a budget.
Where I should have saved
Due to the aforementioned dinner of olives and vodka I got off the plane so entirely famished I could barely make it to my Uber. I didn’t even wait to arrive at my destination before ordering the vegetable curry platter (THAT SERVES THREE!) from an Ethiopian restaurant down the street, much less inquire with my roommate if we had any groceries to make dinner. I arrived to my apartment and launched myself head first into the warm embrace of spicy curry. I’d say that next time I’ll probably order for one, but I don’t intend to make promises I can’t keep.
Dunkin Dounuts – $5
Beer and Food – $15
Ubers around town – $20
Pizza Fries – $7
Where I Saved
On Saturday morning I met up with some old college friends and attended the March For Our Lives at the capital. They went to brunch, but my roommate and I walked the 45 minutes from our apartment to the march so we saved some BIG money and stuffed ourselves with coffee and donuts from Dunkin instead of blowing the budget on eggs benedict. Nothing feels better than successfully combatting peer pressure one donut hole at a time.
Where I should have saved
Because protesting is fatiguing, my roommate and I re-fueled with a few PBRs and a flatbread. We hacked the system by walking back to our not-so bougie neighborhood to our local, cash only watering hole instead of paying premium for lunch near the capital. $14 drinks are for tourists and I’m a local once again. You can’t fool me.
I spent Saturday afternoon on my couch, consuming Ethiopian leftovers and 3-5 mixed drinks. I raided my roommate’s liquor cabinet so those suckers were on the house. While I ate and drank, I chatted with my latest interviewee for this week’s job column. You guys know him well, I’m excited for you to read what he has to say.
The rest of the evening went by in a blur of Ubers and various house parties. Normally I’m a bike to the bar kind of girl, but alas, the weather still prohibits my two wheeled transportation. I ended my tour de drinking force in a stop for pizza fries at a secret location near my home. Definitely didn’t need the pizza fries, but honestly who am I to get between drunk me and pizza fries. You know?
CBS Streaming Service – $5.99
Satellite Room Drinks – $10
Dry Cleaning – $40
Bike Tube – $8
Bumble – F R E E
Rug for apartment – $80
Where I Saved
I spent my afternoon at my favorite bookstore, nestled into the darkest corner of the cafe I could find. I had a gift card to said books store, so I did a ton of free reading and coffee drinking. I tried to write, but the firm grip of writer’s block still has me trapped like a scared animal, so mostly I read.
In between reading and drinking coffee I re-activated my Bumble profile. (You probably haven’t heard of Bumble because it’s this super niche dating app). I thought it best to get back out there considering, you know, new city new me and all. Bumble is completely free and offered a solid hour of enjoyment. Plus, I’ve got two dates lined up this week. If I’m lucky I’ll get some content and banish the writer’s block for good.
Where I should have saved
Does anyone really notice when I dry clean my blazers? I’m not so sure. I hate the societal pressure to dry clean. It’s so stupidly expensive.
I bought a subscription to CBS so I could live stream the Stormy Daniels 60 minute interview because I like to stay on top of the most academic of news programming. Turns out a bar near my apartment had a screening with very cheap drink deals, so I made a last minute decision to meet a friend at the bar and do what young people in DC do – drink and yell about current events.
I ordered a bike tube for $8 from Amazon for my semi-broken ride, which is of course the wrong size. I could return the tube, just like I could cancel my CBS subscription and refute the $5.99 charge – but I won’t. I am who I am.
Considering I anticipate my weekends only getting more and more expensive as the weather gets nicer, I texted my old restaurant boss to inquire about bartending on Saturdays. She’s all in, so hopefully sooner rather than later I’ll spend my weekends mixing margs instead of blowing cash. Look for me at your local Mexican watering hole – I’m the one called Victoria..