Travel and Day 1 – by Lachlan Poel
I’m writing this after my first day of work as an intern on Capitol Hill and I am knackered. To be honest, not sure if that’s because of the long day at work, or whether it’s the jet lag that I naively thought I’d managed to avoid. Adam and I got into Washington on Tuesday morning after two long plane flights and a layover in Dubai, whereas Georgia rolled into town in the late afternoon following an even longer flight to Los Angeles and then a short hop to D.C. Of course, with not much open, we had to settle for the only grocery shop we could find in order to get ourselves setup and meals organised. Much harder than you would think when everything has a different name and some things that we’re so used to don’t actually exist – at least not at the shop we’d chosen! Adam checked out some of the Smithsonian museums, whilst I braved the metro to pick up a couple more items we needed and ended up in Virginia, before a reasonably early night to try and get into some form of a regular sleeping pattern.
As for work, it was a bit fresh walking to work and even colder walking home, but apart from that I definitely had an enjoyable first day. Lots of new members were entering their offices for the first time, the halls were busy with interns and staffers running errands or getting organised for the new 116th Congress, which starts tomorrow (Thursday the 3rd). I got my first experience of answering telephone calls from constituents, which is not really something you hear much about in Australia, but in the US it’s quite the thing. Apparently my Aussie accent is a dead giveaway on the phone, with a number of constituents commenting on it throughout the day. I also got to explore some of the House Office buildings (yes there are multiple) and start to piece my way around – which I’m sure is going to take me a little while because the place is huge.
Anyway, that’s all for now, don’t think it’s going to be a late night here as we prepare tomorrow for the new Congress to be sworn in and the government to continue attempting to find a resolution to the shutdown which is the big issue in town at the moment.
Cheers for now,