Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Driving Connecticut Ave. with my son

Washington Monument, Washington D.C., United S...

Washington Monument, Washington D.C., United States as viewed at twilight/dusk. Taken by myself with a Canon 5D and 24-105mm f/4L IS lens. Español: El Monumento a Washington al atardecer Magyar: A Washington emlékmű Polski: Pomnik Waszyngtona o zmierzchu (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For Paco’s 7th birthday, he asked if we could drive the length of Connecticut Ave.

As you may know, DC has streets named after every state and Jokinen is fascinated by streets and geography.

His wish is to drive one state street each year on his birthday.

What’s more, he wanted to drive at night, because, in his words, “it’s more exciting!”

So, we went out on Sat. night and drove to the end (we’re towards the end) and circled back to head downtown to reach the beginning of the street.

His joy was palpable. I guess being on the road at 10:30pm is a new experience at some point, right?

He made great observations about how the types of buildings changed and how the parking became more premium/difficult.

When we finished, we debated for a moment if we should return and do “all of Georgia Ave.” (not a simple task-it’s long).

It was late and I was tired, but Paco wasn’t. He was fully of energy and was egging me on.

“We can do it! We have to do it! It’s my birthday. Come on!”

And, in those exhortations, I heard a bit (more actually) of myself as I realized that my son was in the process of out-“me-ing” me in terms of “go for it” gusto.

Any idea we had—and we had a lot of them—”Let’s call Aunt Kiki and have her wave to us!” or “Let’s stop by Aunt Dina’s house” was fair game for him.

The boy was on a pure adrenaline rush.

All I could think of—aside from how much fun it will be to go out with him when he’s 23 Winking smile is…”man, this boy knows how to LIVE it up!”

The best part was the 2.5 hours of father-son bonding we had as we discussed the City, the Washington Monument and White House (we passed them both), the Battle of Marathon (once we hit the 26 mile mark on our drive) and every other question he asked-and there were a lot of them.

I couldn’t have thought of or wished for a better birthday for him…or for me.

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