I’d forgotten how much I love this city. Working in our nation’s capital puts me right at the center of so many activities. There are so many things to choose from; so much to see and do. When I lived in the area the first time, however, I didn’t do any of it. I never visited the monument or the Lincoln or Jefferson memorials. I never toured the White House. I didn’t take full advantage of the museums or the theatre or the festivals. I figured I could do it any time; after all I did live in the area. But anytime never came.
Not long after that I moved to Harrisburg the capital of Pennsylvania. I thought it would be like moving from one capital city to another. Boy was I wrong! No subway. Downtown shuts down at 7:00. There was no metro system and the bus system left much to be desired. There were things to do, but nothing like DC.
Eight years later, I find myself back in the DC Metropolitan area and I realize how much I missed it. I missed walking to lunch and hearing rhythms of a local amateur drum band floating on the air, or walking past the subway on the way home and hearing an acapella group crooning an oldie or a trumpet player entertaining passers by with a classic jazz cut. I shake my head and smile to myself and think – only in DC!
While all these goings on delight the senses, there are few things that have taken my breath away, which is why today stands out so much. It’s Good Friday. For Christians it’s a significant day marking the Crucifixion of Jesus and the following events that changed the world forever. In the working world, however, it’s just another Friday. So there I was on the way back from picking up lunch waiting to cross the street when I saw it.
Four men dressed in full Roman centurion garb followed by Jesus and two other men dragging their crosses along and weeping women shrouded in black following behind. It was as though time stopped for a moment and the reality of what today means settled into our modern existence. The conversations of those waiting to cross the street with me came to a halt as we all watched the scene pass before us in reverent silence. It was a powerful. When I finally composed myself enough to cross the street and head back to my office, I had no words. Instead, I shook my head, smiled to myself and thought – only in DC!
Happy Easter to you all!