Sunday, May 4, 2008

A good-bye brunch and scavenger hunt

The Sunday before I left DC I invited a bunch of people over for a going-away brunch. Just before people were supposed to arrive, my friend Lauren asked me to help her pick something up at a nearby house. Something in her tone made me suspect that something fishy was up, but I agreed to help her. We rode over to a house in Mt. Pleasant and Lauren disappeared into the house, exiting a few minutes later with two large boxes that I soon learned were filled with vegan and gluten-free muffins. I was so touched that Lauren would get something special like that for me! When we looked inside the box to admire the beautifully decorated peanut-banana and chocolate-mint muffins, Lauren noticed an envelope and said “huh, what’s that, you should open it, maybe it’s the invoice?” Scratching my head, I opened the letter to find the first clue of a scavenger hunt! The clue informed me that I was to go to a place where I could get burritos, mojitos and libros all in the same place and that all of my friends knew I would be scavenge hunting and were planning to show up later in the day.

I love scavenger hunts but I’ve never had one planned just for me, so I was pretty excited and blown away at the same time. With a little clue help from Lauren, I headed off to Kramer Books, a 24-hour book store/cafĂ©, to look for my next clue and Peter and Heather waiting for me. I found my next clue inside a Spanish dictionary in the bookstore, which said: "Go north and seek shelter on the street of brunch food and bars. Find what refugees are seeking when they flee abroad.” It had to be Asylum. I found Scott, Laura and Becca waiting for me at Asylum with my next clue which included directions to a nearby building and vague references to toasting. I arrived only to be stopped by the security guard who was doing a really good job of policing the building. After 20 minutes of arguing, making pleas, joking and phone calling, I finally got up to the roof top where Chris was waiting for me with mimosas. Chris put together this video of his champagne opening mishap as well as some photos from the day.

Chris then gave me my next clue which said “Before you head west we think it would be best if you let a good fiend know that you're on your way, nice and slow. Call your sailboat friend...” When I called my sailboat friend Chris who lives in Seattle, I got a message on his voicemail to go to a place where I could see a bridge over Rock Creek Park from another trail or bridge." It was a bit vague, but I thought I knew where to go. I pedaled to the Calvert Bridge and looked across the expanse below to see in the distance a giant sign hanging from the Connecticut bridge with the words “LOREN: GO HOME” written in large letters.

So home I went to find all of my closest DC friends waiting for me with brunch ready. All around it was one of the nicest things my friends have ever done for me.

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