Week 1: City Living, a Stinky Flower, and Floating on Waves

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Sunday, June 5, 2022


Katie Futrowsky

Our first week in DC has concluded in an astonishingly short amount of time - although this isn't truly my first week in DC. I grew up in Silver Spring, Maryland, and went to college in College Park, Maryland, so DC has alwasy been seemingly (and nearly literally) around the corner. However, in the five days that I have called Foggy Bottom my home, I have experienced quite a lot of the city that I hadn't before - primariily things that I would expect to experience living in any city, but with a unique DC experience mixed in. Most notably, this includes purchasing more groceries than I could reasonably carry and taking quick breaks at every half-block on the one mile trek home. I would say I won't be making that mistake again, but in reality, I most definitely will, again and again and again...

As I was making my first journey to the Rayburn House Office Building, where I will be working this summer in Congressman Bill Foster's office, I walked past the US Botanic Garden. Of course, I had to peak inside, and discovered that the conservatory's corpse flower - Arum titan - was about to bloom! This is a rare event. The corpse flower bloom is named for its ~unpleasant~ smell, similar to that of a rotting corpse, meant to attract pollinators. So, naturally, I gathered a group of fellow interns and we went to the garden on Saturday and observed the brief, huge, stinky bloom in all its glory. It took a couple of minutes for the horrific smell to hit us, and once it did, we took the opportunity to explore the other beautiful parts of the garden. We finished the week by going to a somewhat local (a 20 minute drive away) water park where we partook in swimming and floating in a wave pool and playing mini golf. As expected, I lost at mini golf, but had immense fun in doing so.

Now, I haven't mentioned anything relating to the actual internship itself yet. That part of the week was also very fun and quite informative, but I have decided to focus this post on the other fun aspects of this program that I wasn't expecting. Here's to more riding the (aritificial) waves and existing in the presence of the corpse flower or other awesome plants at the Botanic Garden. I expect to have more interesting things to share about working on the Hill as the weeks progress, as this past week consisted of setting up our tech and drafting some constituent letters.

Until next time!

Katie Futrowsky