Monday, May 18, 2009

Another day, another DC run.

So having nothing much better to do today, since it was so nice out and not too hot, I took another run around Washington DC.

Parking--as usual--down on Hains Point, I ran north along the Potomac River, up past the Lincoln Memorial and the Kennedy Center, then I kept going up Rock Creek Parkway until I got to P Street, which I took east a block or two, looking for 23rd Street or Massachusetts Avenue, either of which I expected would take me to today's intended target, Sheridan Circle.

I wanted to go here for several reasons. First, I like General Sheridan. Second, I hadn't been here before. Third, it was in the middle of Embassy Row, and I like looking at all of the mansions housing the foreign diplomats, most of whom can't drive or park worth a damn. Finally, at approximately 3.6 miles from my parking area, the mileage just seemed to work.

It actually took me a bit to find it, because I did not know where to get off of the parkway and the first five people that I asked on the parkway bike path had never heard of it and didn't know where it was.

I'd have called them idiots, but then I didn't exactly know where it was, either.

So I got a bit off-route, but eventually some nice lady who actually did know where it was pointed me in the right direction and I found it.

It's basically a statue in the middle of a traffic circle. DC has lots of traffic circles, but only one with a statue of Gen. Phil Sheridan and his horse, Renzi. It looks like this:

On a side note, that statue was designed by Gutzon Borglum, the sculptor who went on to design and begin the work on Mount Rushmore. Cool, eh?

So I took in the statue for a bit, then headed back down to my car, eschewing the parkway for a trip through DC's streets so I could see something new. The people were out on the sidewalks, some of them seriously not paying attention, and while passing through the area around Washington Hospital Center, I had to dodge through a whole family of head-in-the-clouds tourists who were looking everywhere but up the sidwalk. I missed most of them but finally collided with a boy of about 12 or 13, knocking him to the sidewalk. But he seemed ok so I carried on, Hopefully next time him and the rest of the Gawker family will pick up a little situational awareness.

When I passed a 7-11 store at 912 New Hampshire Avenue, I stopped in because I was pretty thirsty and getting a bit dehydrated. I was going to buy a bottle of water but damn it--I dropped the two dollars that I'd put in my pocket to buy a drink with somewhere along the route. But the manager on duty was a good duck and seeing how sweaty I was, he gave me a drink of water gratis. Note to self: patronize this store the next time that I have money!

I got a bit bottled up trying to run through the Watergate and Kennedy Center, causing me to backtrack significantly and adding several blocks to my run. But I didn't care, because I was just feeling good and enjoying the day. I took Virginia Ave down to 23rd Street, past the Magic Gourd--DC's best Chinese restaurant--and continued on down to the Lincoln Memorial again. (I could almost have my mail forwarded here...) I ran across the plaza, stopping for just a second to enjoy the view of the Capitol dome and the Washington Monument at the far end of the Reflecting Pool, and then it was back down the Potomac and back to my car. estimated distance covered: 7.75 miles, thanks to my meandering. Time: 1hr, 30 minutes. Going to have to pick the speed up a bit, but then dodging pedestrians on the sidewalks and waiting on traffic lights doesn't exactly help the speed.

All in all, it was a great day to be running, and well worth to trip down. DC is such a nice place at times, and it could be a great place if they'd just get rid of all the people.


  1. Careful running in DC.. Wouldn't want that rarefied air to damage your brain cells... It seems to happen to everyone who hangs out there too long!!!! :)

  2. MMMM... Magic Gourd. YUM. You took me there once. We need to go again.