Week 2: Controlled Chaos on the Hill

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Monday, June 13, 2022


Katie Futrowsky

Our second week came with my first in Representative Foster's physical office, and my gosh - what a change that is from teleworking! After commuting to Rayburn House Office Building on the metro in a sea of other hillterns, and after going through security, the busy day begins! In the office, we work on the same things we would teleworking: writing constituent letters and memos, answering phone calls, skimming through local and national news stories of the day and those involving the Congressman However, in the office, there is so much more that goes with the job! This includes giving tours (for which we completed training this past week), exploring the other House and Senate office buildings and the Capitol, possibly attending hearings, watching votes and congressmen speaking on the floor via the office TV turned to C-SPAN, and likely other activities that I am currently forgetting. Having multiple, varying tasks to complete is exciting, and I am grateful to be doing something a bit different than theoretical astrophysics research as six years of graduate school in the subject is on the horizon.

Adjusting to the 9 to 5 plus the morning and evening commutes was a bit exhausting, but fortunately, I still had time for fun with the other interns and in the DC area. On Friday, we attended a Nationals game, which was quite enjoyable despite the ~$30 cost of dinner (the burger was worth it, though). On Saturday, I had the chance to visit a plant nursery with some rare plants about an hour away, and got to visit my family as I am local to DC. [Note: plants are likely to be a running theme in my blog posts... they bring me such joy!] On Sunday, I visited the Spy Museum with Valeria, Div, Justin, and Saksham, and it was a blast. Surprisingly, I had never been despite growing up in the DC area, and I honestly don't think that I will go again, but it was a fantastic one-time experience. The idea of being a spy is intriguing on its own, but my gosh, the various technologies and gadgets - many made possible by physics - were both a bit terrifying and riveting. There were a few things that made me question the family friendliness of this museum, but after all, I enjoyed it thoroughly. I am now fascinated by microdots. Look them up! And code breaking of course. Go Alan Turing, especially during pride!

There are more exciting activities to come in the week ahead. The January 6 insurrection hearings have just begun, and being in the complex where they're taking place is beyond exciting and feels as though I am part of history. I am giving my first tour this week and am looking forward to getting to walk around during the day and sharing personal stories along with learned facts about various parts of the Capitol. It will be a good week!

Katie Futrowsky