Saturday, July 11, 2009

Meet the Parents, by Mitch Paschen

First of all, I want to say that yes, my picture looks just like Adam's.

Next week, my parents are going to come for a visit with my two brothers. Some of the other AAPD interns will get to meet them. When meeting a fellow intern’s parents, you want to make a good first impression, but you also don’t want to appear like you are trying too hard to get their approval. The main thing is to just be yourself. I have heard this many many times, but it holds very true.

Last Saturday, after the magnificent 4th of July fireworks, I called up Adam and asked if he wanted to go somewhere on Sunday. He was at home, and after about five minutes of talking, he suggested that I come spend the night at his house, and we would then tour around the next day with his family. This sounded like a great idea; a chance to get out of the city and spend the night in the suburbs. I was a little nervous about spending the day with his parents, but since I had met them several times before when they visited Adam at GW, I was comfortable enough to take him up on the offer. I boarded the orange line Metro out to Vienna where he and his dad picked me up and took me to their house. We arrived there at around 11:30pm.
After I got arrived at his house, I learned a little more about his family in a rousing game of 9-ball with him and his dad. In fact, his dad let me try some Dutch cheese, which turned out to be very strong and very delicious.

The next morning after a nice home cooked breakfast (I don’t get many of those anymore), we headed out. In all, there was Adam, his mom, his dad, and me. Our first stop was Riviera Beach, Maryland. We thought that with a name like “beach” in the town, there was bound to be little shops that are common to coastal towns. It turns out that we were wrong, and the only thing worth stopping at was a Dunkin Donuts. After that, we headed to Baltimore’s inner harbor to walk around. This is where we spotted some people riding Segway scooters and decided to give it a try for ourselves. I never quite got used to the feeling on a Segway, because in order to go, you just push forward and in order to stop, you pull backward.

After walking by the world’s largest working cell phone, Adam’s parents took us to the Udvar Hazy center, the extension of the Air and Space museum out by Dulles. While there, I saw the Enola Gay, a Concorde jet, the space shuttle Enterprise (not to be confused with the USS Enterprise from Star Trek), and a full size Boeing 707 jet. We also went up the observation tower and saw a few planes take off.

For dinner back at Adam’s house, we had barbecue chicken, corn on the cob, and waffle fries all while watching Tiger Woods win the golf tournament that he hosted. Overall, Adam’s parents are very gracious hosts, and I want to thank them for helping me to see some attractions that I might otherwise not get to see while in DC. Meeting someone else’s parents can at times be a little intimidating, but if you just be yourself, you can have a great time with some wonderful people.

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