Join Justin and me, Not the HR Lady, on a three-day workcation in Washington, D.C. as we explore the city's rich history, diverse cuisine, and dynamic culture while working remotely and facilitating a leadership summit for a government client.
Day 1: Arriving in DC, Checking into The Thompson and Eating Great Food
As Justin and I walked through the terminal at Reagan National Airport, I felt a sense of e
excitement building inside me. We were on our way to DC for a workcation and it was our first time visiting the city together. We had just been upgraded to First Class on our Delta flight, which added to our good time. The extra legroom and comfortable seats made the flight a breeze.
As we walked, I shared with Justin that I used to live in DC and that I was there during the tragic events of 9/11. I explained that I was facilitating a training session for a multifamily housing company at a hotel right across from the Pentagon when the plane crashed into it. It was a difficult and traumatic experience, but it also taught me the importance of resilience and adaptability.
As we made our way to the hotel, The Thompson Navy Yard, we talked about our plans for the next few days. Justin suggested we try some of the city's best cocktails, and I was excited to show him some of my favorite Black, LGBTQ, Women, and Minority-Owned businesses.
After checking in at The Thompson Navy Yard hotel, we headed to the hotel's rooftop bar for a quick drink. The bar had a trendy vibe and offered stunning views of the city. Justin ordered an Old Fashioned and I ordered a French 75, which was made with gin, champagne, and lemon juice.
As we sipped our cocktails, we talked about our plans for the evening. I suggested that we take the Metro to the Museum of American History, which was one of my favorite Smithsonian museums. We took the Green Line to L'Enfant Plaza and walked a few blocks to the museum. The museum's exhibits were engaging and interactive, and we learned a lot about the history of our country.
After the museum, we headed to Jaleo, a Spanish restaurant that is owned by Chef José Andrés. We ordered the tasting menu, which included a variety of dishes such as gazpacho, shrimp paella, and the famous "liquid olive" sphere. We also tried some of the restaurant's signature cocktails, including the gin and tonic with saffron and the sherry and vermouth cocktail. The atmosphere was lively and the service was excellent.
Day 2: Emceeing a Political Leadership Summit and Exploring the City
Today was a busy day for Justin and me as we were both facilitating a government client's leadership summit at The Hay-Adams hotel. We woke up early and headed to the conference center where the summit was taking place. We wanted to make sure we were prepared, so we went over our notes and coordinated our outfits.
I wore a navy blue suit by Dries Van Noten, a white blouse by Equipment, a necklace by Tiffany & Co, and black pumps by Jimmy Choo. Justin wore a grey suit by Hugo Boss, a white shirt by Thomas Pink, and black shoes by Allen Edmonds. We wanted to look professional and put-together for the event.
The summit was held in a grand ballroom at The Hay-Adams, and the room was filled with government officials and industry leaders. Justin and I kicked off the event with an opening speech and then led a series of interactive activities and breakout sessions. We covered a range of topics, including emotional intelligence, effective communication, and team-building. The participants were engaged and asked thoughtful questions, and we were pleased with how the event went.
After the summit, we headed back to The Thompson Navy Yard hotel to freshen up before dinner. We decided to check out more of the city's culinary offerings, and we found a nearby restaurant, Maketto, that caught our eye. Maketto was an Asian-inspired restaurant and marketplace, and we were intrigued by its combination of food, retail, and art. We ordered the crispy pork belly buns, the General Tso's chicken, and the seafood curry, and we were blown away by the flavors.
As we ate, we talked about our favorite parts of the summit and the feedback we had received from the participants. We also talked about how grateful we were to be able to work and travel together, and how much we were enjoying our time in DC.
Day 3: The Metro, Activist Diners and Museums
Today was our last day in DC, so we wanted to make the most of it. We started the day with breakfast at Le Diplomate, a popular French café located in the Logan Circle neighborhood. The café had a charming atmosphere and the menu featured a range of classic French dishes. We ordered the croissants, eggs benedict, and café au lait.
After breakfast, we took the Metro from Shaw-Howard University station to the National Mall and visited the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum. The museum had a vast collection of airplanes and spacecraft, and we marveled at the engineering and technology that had allowed us to explore the skies and beyond. We even got to touch a moon rock that was brought back by the Apollo 17 mission.
For lunch, we went to Busboys and Poets, a café and bookstore that is also a hub for social and political activism. The menu featured a range of dishes inspired by the cuisines of Africa, the Americas, and the Middle East. We ordered the vegan chili and the fried catfish sandwich, and we talked about some of the ways we could apply the leadership principles we had discussed at the summit to our personal and professional lives.
In the afternoon, we decided to take a stroll through Georgetown, a historic neighborhood known for its cobblestone streets and upscale shops. We window-shopped at some of the designer boutiques and stopped at Baked and Wired, a local bakery, for a sweet treat. I ordered the red velvet cupcake, and Justin ordered the chocolate chip cookie.
As the sun began to set, we made our way back to The Thompson Navy Yard hotel to freshen up before dinner. We had reservations at Rose's Luxury, a Michelin-starred restaurant that was known for its creative, seasonal dishes. We ordered the smoked brisket, the grilled octopus, and the eggplant pasta, and we savored every bite.
As we finished our meal, we reflected on our time in DC and how much we had enjoyed our workcation. We had learned a lot at the leadership summit and had explored some of the city's best sights and flavors. We were grateful for the opportunity to work and play together in a new city, and we felt energized and inspired for our next adventure.
Day 4: Farewell DC
On our last day, we packed our bags and checked out of The Thompson Navy Yard hotel. We took the Metro from the Navy Yard station to the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, using the Blue Line. As we rode the train, we reminisced about our favorite parts of the trip and the memories we had made. We both agreed that DC was a city that we would love to visit again and explore more.
Reasons Why Blending Work and Pleasure is Good for Your Mental Health:
It provides a change of scenery and pace, which can help to reduce stress and increase creativity.
It can promote work-life balance by allowing you to pursue activities that bring you joy outside of work hours.
It provides an opportunity to bond with colleagues outside of a traditional work setting, which can foster better communication and collaboration in the workplace.
It can be a chance to explore a new city, learn about its history and culture, and gain new perspectives that can inspire personal and professional growth.
It can provide a sense of accomplishment and motivation to complete work tasks, knowing that there is a reward or fun activity to look forward to.
Leadership Lessons from Our Nation's Capital:
Embrace diversity and inclusion, as Washington, D.C. is a melting pot of cultures and backgrounds that come together to create a dynamic city.
Practice adaptability and resilience, as demonstrated by the city's ability to recover from challenging times such as 9/11 and its ability to evolve with changing times.
Communicate effectively and clearly, as demonstrated by the city's politicians and diplomats who use diplomacy and tact to navigate complex issues.
Foster a culture of innovation and progress, as demonstrated by the city's commitment to scientific research and technological advancement.
Show a commitment to public service and social responsibility, as demonstrated by the city's government officials and community leaders who work tirelessly to serve the needs of their constituents.
Where did we Go? What did we Do? What did we Eat? What did we Wear?
The Thompson Navy Yard: https://www.hyatt.com/en-US/hotel/washington-dc/the-thompson-washington-dc/dcarn
The Hay-Adams: https://www.hayadams.com/
Le Diplomate: https://lediplomatedc.com/
Busboys and Poets: https://www.busboysandpoets.com/
Baked and Wired: https://bakedandwired.com/
Rose's Luxury: https://www.rosesluxury.com/
Dries Van Noten: https://www.driesvannoten.be/
Tiffany & Co: https://www.tiffany.com/
Jimmy Choo: https://us.jimmychoo.com/en/home
Hugo Boss: https://www.hugoboss.com/us/
Thomas Pink: https://www.thomaspink.com/us/
Allen Edmonds: https://www.allenedmonds.com/